The martini cocktail is one of the most versatile mixed drinks you can make.
Most martinis have very basic ingredients, and this classic cocktail has been featured endlessly in literature and film. In fact, many people first heard about the martini with the James Bond character ordering it and asking that it be shaken and not stirred. This cocktail was also a favorite with Ernest Hemingway.
Also, a martini is iconic and sophisticated. People have been enjoying martinis for about 100 years, so it has staying power.
There are two basic types of martinis: dry martinis and sweet vodka martinis.
When it comes to classic cocktails, martinis are among the most iconic and versatile options you can find. With a rich history dating back to the early 20th century, there is no denying the elegance and sophistication that surround this drink. Thanks to the many different ingredients and variations available, you can easily find a martini to suit your taste and preferences.
Begin your journey through the diverse world of martinis by exploring the main types, which you will discover are often characterized by their base spirits and unique flavor profiles. Gin, vodka, and vermouth are commonly used to create a wide variety of martinis, with different garnishes and preparation techniques adding even more depth to the experience.
When ordering a martini or crafting your own, understanding the distinctions between these types will help you appreciate the subtleties that make each one special. Experiment with different flavors and styles, and you will soon discover a world of possibilities, all while sipping an elegant beverage with a rich history.
Dry martinis are made with gin and vermouth, while sweet vodka martinis (or a wet martini made with sweet vermouth) are fruity and sweet.
How do you make a martini? Let’s dive into this list of all the different types of martinis.
The Bikini vodka martini (sometimes called the Hawaiian martini) is a fun and fruity martini drink that will impress your friends who who love a sweet fruity drink.
The Bikini vodka martini has a tropical vibe and looks gorgeous in a martini glass or cocktail glass. This is one of our favorite fruity martini recipes.
This flavored vodka martini is similar to a Malibu Sunset cocktail, and the Bikini martini is made with vodka, coconut rum, sweet grenadine, and pineapple juice.
You can layer this vodka martini cocktail for even more gorgeous color effects, and you will feel like you’re an expert mixologist.
Be sure you pour slowly so that you don’t create waves. Garnish with an olive.
If you are looking for a unique fruity vodka martini, you will love the French martini.
This perfect martini bears almost no resemblance to the classic dry martini that’s made with gin. Rather, the French martini is balanced and fruity.
The secret to the perfect French martini is the pineapple juice and black raspberry liqueur.
Every single sip is nuanced and intriguing, and you may find yourself craving a fruity French martini instead of your classic martini.
Garnish your French martini in a chilled cocktail glass with a raspberry or two.
There aren’t precise records that show exactly where the classic martini originated. However, the most commonly accepted theory is that the gin martini is based on a similar cocktail called the Martinez that was created in the 1860s in the area of Martinez, California.
In 1988, a recipe for the classic martini made with dry vermouth first appeared in print in a recipe book.
Are you wondering how to make a martini? This classic martini recipe made with dry vermouth is exactly what you need to make the best gin martini.
A classic martini has only two official ingredients: gin and dry vermouth. Also, a classic martini should be stirred, not shaken.
Garnish your martini with a green olive or a lemon twist.
Do you want to know how to make a vodka martini or a dry vodka martini? Simply substitute vodka for gin.
Perhaps one of the most decadent types of martinis, the chocolate martini definitely sets itself apart with flavor and sophistication.
Think of the chocolate martini as a boozy dessert in a martini glass.
To create this delicious dessert martini, you need chocolate liqueur, Baileys Irish Cream, vodka, and chocolate syrup.
You’re going to drizzle your chocolate syrup inside your martini glasses and also create a chocolate syrup rim on the glass.
To create your chocolate rim, pour some chocolate syrup into a saucer and then rim your chilled martini glass.
For garnish on this classic cocktail, shave good-quality chocolate over the top of your chocolate martini.
If you love fruity types of martinis, you’re going to adore this watermelon martini.
A vodka martini that’s made with fresh lime juice and mint leaves, this watermelon martini will take your breath away in all the best ways.
The recipe calls for an orange liqueur such as Cointreau or Triple Sec, but you can also include a splash of Limoncello to give it more citrus flavor.
Also, if your watermelon is beautifully ripe, you won’t even need to use simple syrup to make this watermelon martini sweeter.
Garnish your watermelon martini with a wedge of ripe but firm watermelon with the rind still on it.
When you want to serve a gorgeous fruity martini, this blood orange martini will be perfect.
A blood orange martini has strong citrus notes and presents that perfect balance of bitter, tart, and sweet.
To create this beautiful martini cocktail, you need a London dry gin, blood oranges that you’re going to use to create homemade orange juice, Cointreau or Triple Sec (or Grand Marnier), and fresh lime juice.
Shake all of the ingredients in a cocktail shaker (for a shaken martini) with some ice cubes and strain them into a martini glass.
Garnish your blood orange martini with sliced blood oranges or lime wedges.
The lemon drop martini is one of the most popular martini recipes.
A lemon drop is also one of our favorite cocktails to make with Cointreau.
Use fresh lemon juice to make your lemon drop martini, or in a pinch, bottled lemon juice.
To make the lemon drop martini, place all of the ingredients into a cocktail shaker and shake it well with ice cubes.
The secret to the perfect lemon drop martini is the lemon sugar rim. To get a lemon sugar rim, simply rub the lemon zest into plain white granulated sugar.
Garnish your lemon drop martini with a lemon twist or lemon peel.
Perhaps one of the first of the unique martini flavors was the simple dirty martini.
A dirty martini is super easy to make. You make a regular martini with gin and dry vermouth, but then you add a splash of olive juice (or twirl your green olive around in the cocktail glass).
In the 1930s, the dirty martini became popular when Pres. Franklin Delano Roosevelt served one to British Prime Minister Winston Churchill.
Whether or not that story is entirely accurate, it does make for a nice tale and has cemented the dirty martini into historical lore.
We love the gorgeous pin color of this raspberry martini, but best of all, we love the sweet smooth taste.
You can serve this raspberry martini during the holidays, and it’s also the perfect fruity martini for Valentine’s Day or New Year’s Eve.
This martini is served cold, so you need to shake it with crushed ice.
For alcohol, use gin or vodka, and you need dry vermouth.
Cranberry juice gives it an even more fruity flavor, and the raspberry flavor comes from the raspberry simple syrup.
To make the raspberry simple syrup, you need water, sugar, and fresh raspberries.
Garnish with more fresh raspberries.
For a classic martini cocktail with a twist, we present the cranberry martini.
If you have a cocktail party or do any entertaining around the holiday season, this gorgeous cranberry martini will delight your guests.
A cranberry martini offers the perfect balance of tart and sweet.
With orange liqueur (Triple Sec or Cointreau), vodka, and cranberry juice, this martini is absolutely perfect when you garnish it with an orange slice and sugared cranberries.
Shake your cranberry martini with ice in a cocktail shaker and strain it into a martini glass.
For garnish, create a sugar rim around your glass and use skewers of sugared cranberries, along with a gorgeous ripe orange slice.
You can also make a cranberry martini with gin.
11. Cucumber Martini
Did you know that cucumber vodka is a thing? Yes, it is, and we’re here for it.
However, if you can’t find cucumber vodka to make your cucumber martini, you can easily make your cucumber martini by muddling your cucumbers and using regular white vodka.
This cucumber martini gets its flavor from the elderflower liqueur St. Germain, which brings in some wonderful floral notes.
This recipe calls for fresh lime juice, but we also love a cucumber martini that’s made with simply cucumber, vodka, St. Germain, and dry vermouth.
Garnish your cucumber martini with some thinly sliced cucumbers and you have cool perfection in a glass.
12. Vesper Martini
If you fancy yourself a literary person, the Vesper martini may be a sophisticated martini you can appreciate.
The beloved Vesper martini was invented between the pages of a book and was the signature cocktail of none other than James Bond, or 007.
The author, Ian Fleming, created the Vesper martini in the book “Casino Royale,” which was published in 1953.
In the book, 007 approaches the bartender and specifies exactly what he wants to drink. The Vesper is named after Bond’s current lady friend, Vesper Lynd.
A Vesper martini contains gin, Lillet Blanc, and vodka, so you know it packs a punch.
13. Key Lime Martini
If you love key lime pie, you’re going to be delighted by this fun and tasty key lime martini.
Key limes are nice and sharp, and this drink is all of that plus creamy and sweet.
To achieve the delicious key lime pie flavor, you need vanilla vodka and fresh lime juice or key lime juice.
Use cream of coconut (we like Coco Real brand) to give this key lime martini a rich coconut flavor.
Pineapple juice adds just the right amount of balance without an overpowering fruit flavor.
Heavy cream makes this key lime martini super creamy.
Garnish with a graham cracker crust, just like in a key lime pie.
14. Espresso Martini
For a sweet, strong martini with an extra kick, try the espresso martini.
The espresso martini is the perfect after-dinner cocktail to enjoy after a big meal.
If you love coffee and booze, the espresso martini will delight you on both counts.
The espresso martini may remind you of Irish coffee, but it’s even easier to make.
All you need is four ingredients to make an espresso martini: coffee-flavored liqueur such as Kahlua, vodka, cooled coffee, and simple syrup.
These ingredients are shaken in a cocktail shaker with ice cubes and then strained into a martini glass.
For more fun and sophistication, garnish your espresso martini with coffee beans.
15. Mexican Martini
This copycat Mexican martini is a copycat version of the famous Mexican martini from Austin, Texas’ Trudy’s restaurant.
The Mexican martini is a dirty martini because it has a dash of olive juice (the brine that comes in a jar of green olives). Olive juice is what makes a martini a “dirty martini.”
For this copycat recipe, you need fresh lime juice and fresh orange juice.
Use an orange liqueur such as Triple Sec or Cointreau for more citrus flavor.
Good-quality tequila is what makes this Mexican martini super special, and a bit of lemon-lime soda like 7-Up or Sprite adds a touch of sweetness.
Rim the glass with coarse salt and garnish with stuffed green stuffed olive and a lime wheel.
If the idea of a sweet martini appeals to you, give this delicious pomegranate martini a try at your next cocktail party.
The pomegranate martini is light, fruity, and has a tart sweetness.
The pomegranate martini is similar to a Cosmopolitan, but a Cosmo has cranberry juice instead of pomegranate juice.
This fruity martini is light and refreshing, and it gets even more flavor from fresh lemon juice.
We love that this martini calls for the orange liqueur Cointreau, which adds even more citrus flavor because of the orange notes.
Simple sugar syrup makes the pomegranate martini perfectly sweet.
Garnish this fruity martini with a lemon peel.
17. Gibson Cocktail
Picture a dry martini with a garnish consisting of some tiny pickled onions and you have one of the more interesting martini variations: the Gibson cocktail.
The Gibson cocktail (sometimes called the Gibson martini) has been around for a super long time, too.
Most mixology experts believe that the Gibson cocktail was created by a businessman named Walter D.K. Gibson in 1898.
But why did he choose to garnish his signature cocktail with pickled onions? Apparently, Mr. Gibson had the idea that onions prevent colds, so he used this tasty but strong garnish for his Gibson cocktail.
For a Gibson cocktail, you need gin, dry vermouth, and pickled cocktail onion.
Do you want to learn how to make the best martini recipe? Watch the video below.
Our Best Types of Martinis (+Bikini Martini)
- 4 ounces coconut rum
- 4 ounces fresh pineapple juice
- 3 ounces white vodka
- 1/8 teaspoon grenadine
- Maraschino cherry for garnish
- Pineapple chunks for garnish
- Combine the rum, vodka, and pineapple juice with ice in a cocktail shaker.
- Shake until well chilled.
- Pour into a glass and add the grenadine.
Organize all the required ingredients.
Enjoy the food.