Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini

For this week’s #MasterofCocktails we’re having a go at a modern classic. An Espresso Martini. Now before we begin, we’re going to start by getting a few silly preconceptions out of the way…

The biggest one is probably the ingredients. If anyone says that you need a coffee liqueur to make an espresso martini, chances are they’re trying to sell you some coffee liqueur. Or have been paid by a Coffee Liqueur Brand.

The thing about coffee liqueur is that it’s made of coffee, and alcohol. We’re using incredibly fresh coffee for this, which means you’re going to get more than enough coffee punch, and won’t have to sacrifice any flavour (as larger, more complex flavour molecules tend to degrade over time). We’re also using dry ice today. As detailed last week, you can get this by ordering from online stores that ship frozen.

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini ingredients

You’ll be needing these…

List of Ingredients

So, to begin, knock up some espresso. If you’ve got a choice, you probably want fruit and acidity over power. Something Ethiopian would be ideal. Let it go cold if you can wait as this will reduce dilution.

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini espresso shot

Measure out 50ml, excluding crema, and add it to a cocktail shaker packed with ice.

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini measure espresso

Next up, 10ml of Sugar Syrup. Don’t overdo it here – it’s easy to lose good coffee in sweetness.

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini measure sugar syrup

The next ingredient will take a bit of explaining. It’s from one of our less mainstream ranges – ‘Batshit Mental Ideas‘. It’s basically a cold-infused, cold-distilled coffee distillate made with wheat spirit.

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini Batshit Mental Ideas Coffee Distillates

The idea here was to grab as much of the fresh, ‘high’ compounds contained in freshly-roasted coffee as possible, so…they’re all infused and distilled within a maximum of 7 days of roasting. We’re going to use 50ml in this cocktail.

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini measure coffee distillates

Now you absolutely *could* use normal vodka instead here, but the distillate just gives it extra depth. So – into the shaker, shaky shaky shaky…

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini shaker

Then strain into a tumbler. A wine-glass-shaped one if you have one. Not a Martini Glass…

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini tumbler

When you first pour, it’ll be cloudy, but it’ll settle, like Guinness, in a couple of minutes.

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini

Now grab yourself a slightly larger glass, and put about 10ml Master of Malt Cardamom Bitters in.

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini cardamom bitters

And so, onto the dry ice. About 10ml of so? Be careful, as it’ll burn you if you hold it for too long! Reduce it down to gravel-sized rubble with your knife…

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini dry ice

…then dump it into the glass containing the bitters, and pour the resulting fog over the drink.



(and yes, I’m apparently now going to that special place in hell reserved for people who record videos in portrait – I thought my first born should stop featuring quite so prominently though!)

The idea of the fog, by the way, isn’t simply to be trendy – it adds aroma, but with virtually no flavour. You can use pretty much any bitters, and it’ll carry across beautifully. Needs to be bitters or powerful liquor though.

And there you have it, a gorgeous Espresso Martini.

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini




You can find all the ingredients we’ll be using next week below. As ever, you can mix along on twitter via #MasterofCocktails this Sunday evening from 6pm or find the entire recipe here on the blog the very next day.

Master of Cocktails Espresso Martini next week

Next week you’ll be needing these…
Filliers Dry Gin 28, Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur, Benoit Serres Liqueur à la Violette, a Lemon.