How To Make A Classic Espresso Martini + 5 Holiday Bar Tips

This post has been sponsored by Pernod Ricard USA. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

A Classic Espresso Martini

Are you into after dinner drinks? I remember my Grandfather making espressos or even just a coffee after dinner and twisting lemon peels into them. Very Italian, right? Or maybe a Sambuca neat. With three espresso beans of course for good luck. As an adult, I now love an after dinner drink. But to be honest, I rarely ever think to get them. One of my all time favorite cocktails to finish a night off with though is an espresso martini. They’re insanely easy to make. And I honestly don’t know why I don’t make these more often at home. They’re the perfect way to end the day.

How To Make An Espresso Martini

The great thing about an espresso martini is that there are minimal ingredients. I love simple cocktails that feel fancy, but aren’t. Duh, that’s my thing, elevated everyday. And you can also very easily swap the espresso for the morning coffee or even cold brew concentrate if you keep that on hand in the fridge (I usually do!). Another great thing about this simple cocktail is how easy you can tweak the recipe too. Add a little cinnamon, or nutmeg if you like. Try a little pumpkin spice coffee instead of a regular cup of Joe.

  • Kahlúa Original
  • Absolut® Vodka – you can also use Altos Tequila for a Mexican Espresso or Jameson Whiskey for an Irish Espresso
  • Espresso (or any kind of coffee you have on hand!)
  • Ice
  • Coffee beans for garnish

This recipe is SO easy. Just take equal parts Kahlúa Original, Absolut® Vodka and espresso and add them to a shaker. Add ice and shake LIKE CRAZY for about 20-30 seconds. You want to shake like crazy so you get a good foam on top when you pour it. Strain your espresso martini into a martini or coupe glass and top with 3 espresso beans. That’s it. It’s THAT simple. The Kahlúa Original really amplifies the coffee flavor and makes it a creamier cocktail, my favorite part of it. It’s so smooth and delicious. It really hits the spot after a delicious meal with friends.

Now that we’ve got your signature after-dinner cocktail down, I want to share a few tips for your bar. Especially since we’re in peak holiday season, you want to make sure you’re ready to go for friends. Plus, you can easily swap out the vodka for Altos tequila for a Mexican Espresso martini, or with Jameson for a Kentucky espresso martini. So easy and a great way to make everyone happy!

A Bottle Of Kahlua Poured On A Decorative Cup
Absolut Vodka Poured On A Decorative Cup
Bottles Of Kahlua, Malibu, Absolut Vodka, Etc.
A Classic Espresso Martini
A Classic Espresso Martini
A Classic Espresso Martini

5 Tips To A Well-Stocked Bar For The Holidays

Multiple Liquor Options

Have enough liquor for your signature drinks, but also some other options just in case. You don’t have to have your ENTIRE bar out. But a few essentials include a vodka (Absolut® Original is great and everyone can get on board with it), a whiskey or scotch like Jameson® Whiskey. Jameson Whiskey is great because it’s one most people just drink neat or with ice or water. Rum is great for cocktails and mixes well with cola and juices. Malibu® Original has always been my go-to. And my personal favorite, tequila! The Altos® Tequila is a great silver that is perfect for margaritas or just sipping with ice and fresh lime juice.

A Good Dessert Liquor Option

It’s nice to have a dessert liquor you can use in coffee or cocktails and that’s why my bar always has Kahlúa Original. This is great alone or over ice. It’s also nice to spike your coffee with. But personally, I love an espresso martini. They’re so simple and easy!


You don’t need a ton of things, but a few rocks glasses will do the trick. It’s nice to always have some sort of champagne flutes for any toast you may be doing as well. I love coupe glasses for this because they double as cocktail glasses too so you have less “stuff”.

An Ice Bucket

This helps to let guests make their own drinks. Set up your ice bucket next to your liquor and mixers making it super easy for guests to mix up their own drinks so you aren’t playing bartender all night long.

Limited Mixers

I’m usually all for help yourself a pre-made cocktail when hosting, or just wine/beer. But if you’re offering a variety of liquors, you’ll want to accompany them with a handful of mixers for your guests too. You don’t need an entire grocery store of options. But based on having Malibu® Original, Kahlúa Original, Jameson® Whiskey, Absolut® Original, and Altos® Tequila there are a few staples I’d include. Below are some cocktail ideas that are simple for guests to create on their own.

Make Mules with ginger beer and lime. Ginger beer is a great mixer to have on hand because you can also swap out the vodka with Jameson or Altos tequila. A Cape Cod is also a popular favorite which is simply cranberry juice with vodka garnished with lime. And lastly, cola. Adding cola to Jameson® or Malibu® is a simple mixer that’s also a great crowd-pleaser.

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Photos by Hannah Lozano

Jessica is an Atlanta life and style blogger. Aiming to bring practical tips to your every day life. Tips that you can easily tackle and make your life feel just a tad more 'put-together'.

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  1. 12.8.19
    Maureen said:

    I love martinis and I love espresso! This is such a great idea and seriously, who couldn’t use a little pick me after a food coma?!

    Maureen |