Conceived in London, the Espresso Martini is a rich and creamy cocktail that gives you the perfect kick any time of the day.
With coffee as its hero, it’s ideal for entertaining guests or just as a classic after-dinner drink!
What’s all the fuss about the Espresso Martini?
The Espresso Martini is a creamy cocktail with the butteriness of hazelnut liqueur.
It’s not a true martini since it doesn’t contain gin or vermouth, but this cocktail has been the reason the Espresso Martini Fest has been held in London since 2017.
I actually used to make them on a daily basis when I worked as a cocktail bartender in London. In fact, Espresso Martini won me a competition for the prettiest looking cocktail back in the day 😉
Created by Dick Bradsell in the early 1980s, there is a history behind this kicker of a drink.
The history of the Espresso Martini
One day in 1981 or 1982, a tired supermodel walked into a London bar called Fred’s Club, and asked then bartender Dick Bradsell for something that would “wake her up, and f*** her up”.
He proceeded to create an on the spot concoction that he called a Vodka Espresso. This espresso soon rose to fame.
When Dick moved to his next job as a consultant at the Pharmacy in 1998, the drink was renamed the Pharmaceutical Stimulant. Over time and with it’s rising popularity in the UK, US, and Australia, the drink evolved and came to be called an Espresso Martini.
That’s why you must drink an ode to this popular drink today!
The recipe for Espresso Martini varies from source to source but look at the recipe at the International Bartender Association to see that the base ingredients of vodka, espresso coffee, and Kahlua don’t change.
How difficult is it to prepare an Espresso Martini? It’s as easy as ABC; A – add ingredients to the cocktail shaker, B – blend together, C – chug down your drink!
Recipe Pointers For Espresso Martini Recipe
- To make a drink that is slightly sweeter, add the Godiva Chocolate Liqueur or Creme de Cacao or ½ ounce of simple syrup.
- You can chill the espresso or concentrated coffee liqueur before using it. Since coffee is slightly acidic, it can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for a few days.
- Shake all the ingredients with extra ice in the cocktail shaker for a cooler drink.
- Top the drink (after creating a foam) with roasted coffee beans or if serving as an after-dinner drink, use cocoa powder.
- If you’re preparing drinks for a large group of people, prepare the mixture in a jug, and stir it together. But shake each batch in a cocktail shaker for at least 20 secs before serving.
- Chill the martini glasses in the refrigerator for 30 minutes before serving to create the right effect.
FAQs about making Hazelnut Espresso Martini
If you don’t have espresso, you can also use a store-bought coffee concentrate or leave it out entirely.
If you don’t have Coffee Liqueur, you can add an additional ounce of espresso.
If you don’t have Frangelico Hazelnut Liqueur, Amaretto will also be delicious. Adding amaretto will change it to a delicious Almond Espresso Martini.
Please do not use standard egg whites as they may contain bacteria that can cause foodborne illnesses. Using pasteurized egg white is critical in this recipe! If you do not have pasteurized egg whites, or if you have a weakened immune system, leave the egg whites out. Without the egg white, the drink will still be delicious— just not as foamy.
To get a good amount of froth, add the pasteurized egg to the mixture. Also, shake the cocktail shaker till it’s well chilled.
To make an espresso martini with baileys just replace the Kahlua Coffee Liqueur and the Frangelico Hazelnut Liqueur with 2 ounces of Baileys Irish Cream.
It will make your cocktail more creamy so personally, I don’t know why anyone would prefer that.
The best creamy cocktail with Baileys is Oreo Cocktail.
- 1 ounce espresso or strong brewed coffee
- 1 ounce vodka
- 1 ounce Kahlua Coffee Liqueur
- 1 ounce Frangelico Hazelnut Liqueur
- 1 ounce Godiva Chocolate Liqueur (optional)
- 1/2 ounce pasteurized egg white, optional *see notes*
- Fill a cocktail shaker (or glass jar) with ice.
- Add the espresso (must be cooled down if made fresh), vodka, Kahlua, Frangelico, Godiva and egg white, if desired.
- Shake well until chilled and frothy - about 30 seconds.
- Strain out the ice and serve immediately.
- If you don’t have espresso, you can also use a store-bought coffee concentrate.
- If you don’t have Coffee Liqueur, you can substitute an additional ounce of espresso and sugar syrup.
- If you don’t have Frangelico Hazelnut Liqueur, Amaretto would also be delicious.
- If you would like a drink that is slightly sweeter, add the Godiva Chocolate Liqueur or Creme de Cacao or ½ oz of sugar syrup.
- Using pasteurized egg white is critical in this recipe! Please do not use a standard egg white as they may contain bacteria that can cause foodborne illnesses. If you do not have pasteurized egg whites, or if you have a weakened immune system, leave the egg whites out. Without the egg white, the drink will still be delicious— just not as foamy. You can create foam by shaking the cocktail for a bit longer.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 259Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 4mgCarbohydrates: 35.3gFiber: 0gSugar: 11.2gProtein: 0g