As Drake once said, the first martini is an espresso. The rich, frothy, and indulgent cocktail is one of 2023’s most popular alcoholic beverages since solidifying its comeback last year, when it became one of the 10 most-ordered drinks in America. It didn’t take data to tell us that; just one look at all the espresso tini’s queued up at the bar, each splattering a little bit at the drop of the three espresso beans on top. Our social feeds show some pretty solid proof, too.
Now, let’s crack open the history books for a moment. The espresso martini dates back to 1983 when a young model asked Dick Bradsell, a London bartender, to make her a cocktail that would “wake her up, then f*ck her up.” Sleep-deprived but ready to drink: apparently, not much has changed for young people over the last few decades.
The resurgence of demand for the cocktail can be credited to two inarguably American traits: we’re obsessed with quality coffee, and we’re exhausted. As flocks of young adults returned to the bars post-pandemic (us included), we realized we couldn’t drink as much (or stay out as late) as we used to, and that’s when we laid eyes on the most perfect concoction of alcohol and caffeine that man has ever known: the espresso martini. As the old saying goes, what goes around comes back around.
With a dumb amount of videos racking up millions of views on TikTok, the creamy cocktail has gone mainstream, and not just in a fancy martini glass. We noticed an acceleration in the craze for canned cocktails thanks to the pandemic, triggering the creation of ready-to-drink canned espresso martinis like Deloce and Loverboy. Brands and restaurants are even shaking it up (no pun intended) from the classic recipe. For example, BuzzFeed shared a recipe in partnership with Aboslut for an ‘Oat Milk Latte Martini,’ which is basically just a pretentious way of saying a classic espresso martini with a splash of oat milk.
Of course, we couldn’t leave you without a recipe. We suggest experimenting with different types of liquor (e.g. tequila, mezcal, Baileys, Kahlúa, etc.) to craft the perfect espresso martini for your taste.
Easy Espresso Martini Recipe
This one is as simple as it gets. You just need equal parts:
It’s prettier to watch than to list ingredients.