Nothing says ‘party’ better than a cocktail, and my current obsession is the classic and delicious espresso martini. This luscious, smooth and rich cocktail shouts decadence and glamour, from its sumptuous texture and elegant coffee bean garnish, right down to the sleek, dark colour of the liquid itself. Perfect (and easy) to prepare at a New Year’s Eve party and certainly something that will impress your guests.
A long-time lover of coffee (and vodka!) but only a recent enjoyer of the drink itself – I had simply never tried it, always opting for a fruity or fizzy concoction instead – I now can’t get enough of this tasty tipple. I’m making up for lost time after all!
This delicious drink made its debut in a London club in the late eighties and has firmly cemented itself into popular culture as the go-to post dinner cocktail and alternative to a classic cappuccino. The only thing better than ordering one of these in a bar is being able to make one for yourself at home and, better yet, for guests at a seasonal soiree.
It really is quite simple to make – read on to find out how to prepare the perfect espresso martini.
You will need
Coffee Liqueur 20ml – Conker Cold Brew is my top choice with its creamy, dark and flavoursome nature. The brew is so smooth with natural vanillas and caramels and just a touch of demerara sugar needed to complete the alchemy – no flavourings, no additives, no nasty thickeners – just a tasty drink. (£30 for 70cl at conkerspirit.co.uk)
A cocktail shaker, strainer and martini glasses – VonShef Barware offer up some super-stylish cocktail sets like this smart, eye-catching green and gold 9 piece set for £29.99. The set includes a 500ml shaker, muddler, bar spoon, 25 and 50ml measuring cup, hawthorne strainer, mesh strainer, two optics and recipe book. I also love this Espresso Martini Cocktail Gift With Two Coupe Glasses from popular online retailer Not on the High Street. Serve your drinks in the sleek gold-coloured large martini glasses (£16.99) and your guests will only be able to assume you’ve spent a previous life whipping up drinks in a cocktail bar.
An espresso machine – to make 25ml of espresso – The Y3.2 iperEspresso Espresso & Coffee Capsule Machine is elegant, compact and easy to use – it’s been designed by an architect after all! One touch of a button is all it takes to create a harmonious and delicious coffee. Each capsule is created to give the essence of the famous 100% Arabica illy blend in every coffee preparation making it perfect for this luxurious party cocktail. (£110.00 from Amazon).
Vodka 40ml – Crystal Head Vodka is a great choice for this cocktail – quadruple distilled and seven times filtered, this vodka tastes good and looks the part too. Presented in a spectacular skull-shaped bottle and founded by Dan Ackroyd – what could be a better story for your drink? (£39.95 for 70cl from 31dover.com)
Sugar syrup or even a pinch of salt – optional – depending on how sweet your tooth is.
Garnish – optional – the classic is a couple of coffee beans but you could try a sprinkling of nutmeg instead or perhaps a soupçon of dark chocolate for a delicate decoration. Give it a go and see what tickles your fancy!
Pour the ingredients into a shaker filled with lots of ice (to cool down that hot coffee), shake vigorously (this more you shake the frothier the top) and strain into a martini glass, then add your chosen garnish. Remember, have some fun and create this to suit your personal preferences – a great host will be able to adapt to their guests tastes as well. Enjoy!