About The Chilli Chocolate Espresso Martini Recipe
The Espresso Martini has been a cocktail institution since it’s creation in 1983 in a Soho bar.
It’s relative ease to make, combined with that winning blend of smooth vodka and coffee makes it a go-to drink for many a cocktail connoisseur.
Though we love the original recipe (so much so that we created a bottled version) we’re always tinkering with the classics, looking for new flavours.
For this recipe which featured in our cocktail discovery box, we looked at flavours which work well with coffee and vodka. Very quickly we landed on chocolate.
From there, it was a quick leap to add a spiced element to the mix – there’s nothing better than a bit of a heat to offset the creamy cocoa flavour.
We always love to champion British spirit brands, and we were also looking for a creamy vodka which would complement the other ingredients.
After a few tests we found that Puffing Billy Steam Vodka from The Border’s Distillery hit all the boxes.
This unfiltered malted barley vodka is named for the rare still which plays a key role in its production.
The spirit is distilled from locally grown barley from near to the Scottish borders. Regular filtration would strip away flavour, so the liquid is instead steamed through charcoal, resulting in a characterful and creamy mouthfeel.
Choosing the right liqueur
Kahlua is often used in Espresso Martini cocktail recipes, and we do love it – in cocktails or to sip!
However, there are a range of fantastic coffee liqueurs out there.
For this recipe, we chose Conker Distillery’s Cold Brew Coffee Liqueur.
It has a wonderfully bittersweet espresso flavour, punctuated by vanilla and browned caramel notes. A lingering long coffee aroma and cocoa finish make it the perfect addition to the Espresso Martini cocktail.
The Espresso Mix
If we’re honest, the one downside of the iconic Espresso Martini recipe is the addition of raw Espresso mix.
Having experimented at home we can tell you that it’s harder than it looks to get the right balance of espresso just right. You don’t want it to be too watery, but you also don’t want it too bitter and overpowering.
Plus, it can be a pain to have to get your coffee brewed and then chilled before guests arrive.
If we’re entertaining, you’ll usually find us opting for a canned cold brew coffee like Bottleshot or EL&N London.
Creating The Syrup
For the syrup, our drinks team created a bespoke spicy chilli mix for our cocktail box subscribers.
Whilst we can’t give this secret recipe out, an easy option to make at home would be to use Monin Premium Chocolate Syrup.
Infuse with one red chilli cut in stripes (without seeds) for 12 hours.
Or if you like a real spicy kick, then add more chilli.
For more inspiration on creating your own syrups, check out our guide to easy syrup recipes.
How to Make the Chocolate Espresso Martini Recipe
Spicy Chocolate Espresso Martini Ingredients
25ml Puffing Billy Steam Vodka
25ml Conker Distillery Coffee Liqueur
60ml Cold brew coffee
10ml Chilli Infused Chocolate Syrup
To make the cocktail, add your vodka, coffee liqueur, espresso mix and syrup to a shaker.
Add cubed ice and shake hard until the outside of the shaker frosts.
Strain the mix into a chilled martini glass, and garnish with three coffee beans.
Three Coffee Beans
Who Wants Coffee?
The original 1983 Espresso Martini recipe by bartender Dick Bradsel is an essential cocktail for any drinks lover to master. Make it next, or try our own take with Salted Caramel Espresso Martini bottled cocktail.
Available in 200ml or 500ml bottles – either give it as the perfect gift for coffee lovers, or save it for a treat.
Or for the perfect date night, why not treat yourself or a loved on to an Espresso Martini Cocktail Making Kit?
Coming with ingredients to make four serves, also included is a premium cocktail shaker.
We even made a version of the Espresso Martini cocktail with Rum for the rum-lovers out there.