Cold Brew Martini Recipe: No Need For Espresso In 2024

A Cold Brew Martini is an innovative cocktail, it’s an ideal choice for coffee enthusiasts seeking to enjoy not only the morning cup but also the evening drink. And the best part? You do not need an espresso machine.

The use of cold brew concentrate ensures that coffee’s bold flavors are extracted without the bitterness that can sometimes accompany heat extraction methods. This results in a cocktail with a smooth and highly customizable profile, exciting for both casual social gatherings and formal celebrations alike.

The recipe is simple and flexible, allowing you to tailor it to your own taste preferences, whether you enjoy a sweeter drink, a stronger coffee flavor, or a silky foam on top.

Origins of the Cold Brew Martini

Cold Brew Martini Recipe by Starbucks

The Espresso Martini, a classic you might already be familiar with, was first mixed in the 1980s by a London bartender named Dick Bradsell. As the story goes, he created the original concoction—a blend of vodka, coffee liqueur, sugar syrup, and espresso—at the request of a model who wanted something to “wake her up and f*ck her up.” This laid the foundation for coffee cocktails.

In contrast, the Cold Brew Martini doesn’t rely on freshly pulled espresso. Instead, it highlights cold brew coffee, a method of brewing coffee that steeps grounds in cold water over an extended period. This process results in a smoother, less acidic cup, which when used in the martini, offers a more nuanced taste profile compared to its espresso-based cousin.

It’s relatively new to the scene and doesn’t have a definitive origin story. Yet, it has rapidly grown in popularity due to the rising trend of cold brew consumption and the desire to enjoy coffee cocktails beyond the traditional options.

You get to enjoy the depth of coffee flavor without the need for an espresso machine, making it more accessible for home mixologists and a favorite for evening coffee fix.

Ingredients: What You’ll Need

 Two Cold Brew Martinis in stemmed glasses on a marble countertop, garnished with coffee beans, with a wooden coaster and a bowl of coffee beans nearby.
by Pinterest

👉🏼 Coffee Selection

Your Cold Brew Martini starts with cold brew coffee. For this, you can either use a ready-made cold brew or make your concentrate at home using coarsely ground coffee beans steeped in cold water for 12-24 hours.

When selecting coffee beans, aim for a smooth, rich blend that will complement the strong flavors of the alcohol. To make it easy for you, we hand-picked the best coffee to make cold brew coffee.

👉🏼 Alcohol Choices

The alcohol foundation of your martini is crucial:

  • Gin: The class choice.
  • Vodka: A clean, high-quality vodka is also an option, that lets the coffee flavor shine.

👉🏼 Sweeteners and Extras (optional)

While the cold brew and alcohol give the drink its signature kick, sweeteners and extras can balance and enhance the taste:

  • Coffee Liqueur: A coffee-flavored liqueur like Kahlua adds depth with its sweet coffee essence. But it’s optional.
  • Sugars: A touch of sugar or simple syrup can sweeten your martini if desired.
  • Irish Cream: For a creamier twist, add a splash of Baileys or another coffee cream liqueur instead of plain sugar or syrup.

By carefully selecting each of these key ingredients, you’re on your way to creating a delightful Cold Brew Martini that’s tailored just for you. Enjoy the process and the drink!

Step-by-Step Guide:
How to Make Cold Brew Martini

 Pouring a Cold Brew Martini into a martini glass against a white tiled background, with another filled glass in the background.
by Pinterest

Crafting a Cold Brew Martini isn’t just a mix-and-pour affair—it’s a ritual that enhances the drink’s robust flavor and crispness. Ensuring you have the perfect cold brew concentrate as the foundation, followed by skillful mixing, yields a drink that’s both invigorating and smooth.

Step 1: Make Cold Brew Concentrate or Just Buy It

To start, you’ll need a cold brew concentrate that is rich and flavorful. Begin by combining coarse ground coffee with cold, filtered water in a 1:4 ratio in a large jar. Cover and let this mixture steep in your refrigerator for at least 12-24 hours, which allows the coffee to infuse slowly, resulting in a less acidic and more pleasant taste.

Step 2: Filter the Cold Brew Concentrate

Once your steeping time is up, use a fine-mesh sieve or a coffee filter to strain the mixture into a clean jar, creating a smooth concentrate free of grounds. This concentrate is strong, packed with caffeine, and can be stored in your refrigerator for up to a week, ready for whenever you need that coffee kick.

Step 3: Get a Cocktail Shaker and Ice

Fill your cocktail shaker halfway with ice to ensure your drink is refreshingly cold.

Step 4: Mix the Main Ingredients

Pour in equal parts of vodka, cold brew concentrate, and coffee-flavored liqueur (optional). A common ratio is one ounce each, but you can adjust according to your preference.

Step 5: Add Syrups (optional)

If you favor a touch of sweetness, consider adding a dash of simple syrup.

Step 6: Start Shaking

Secure the lid on your shaker and shake vigorously for about 30 seconds. This not only chills the drink but also creates a delightful, creamy foam.

Step 7: Straining

Strain the mixture into a chilled martini glass.

Step: Serve!

Garnish with coffee beans or a light dusting of cocoa powder to enhance the visual appeal and add an extra hint of flavor.

Serving and Presentation

 Two Espresso Martinis in martini glasses garnished with coffee beans, with a cocktail shaker and a bowl of coffee beans in the background.
by Pinterest

When you’re ready to serve your Cold Brew Martini, presentation is key. A martini glass, with its iconic shape, is the traditional choice and enhances the elegance of your drink. Before pouring, ensure your martini glass is properly chilled; this keeps the drink cool and adds a crisp edge.

Consider the following when garnishing your Cold Brew Martini to add visual flair and depth of flavor:

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04/05/2024 11:55 am GMT

Garnish Options

  • Coffee Beans – Float three whole coffee beans on the surface for a classic look.
  • Cocoa Powder – Lightly sprinkle on top for a touch of chocolate.
  • Whipped Cream – A dollop can add a creamy texture if you prefer a sweeter cocktail


If you have leftover cold brew, consider making extra cold brew ice cubes for next time. This way the cocktail won’t be diluted by the melting ice.

Comparison to other Espresso Martini Recipes

When you’re exploring the trendy world of espresso martinis, you’ll discover variations that cater to different preferences and ingredients on hand. Let’s look at how the Cold Brew Martini stands apart from other espresso martini recipes.

  • Espresso Martini: Made with espresso and gin or vodka. Often has a foamy top due to the freshly pulled espresso.
  • Dirty Chai Espresso Martini: Combines espresso with chai tea or chai tea spices, like cinnamon, cardamom, and ginger – giving it a spicy flavor.

💡Interested in other recipes?

Explore our blog post on how to make a Dirty Chai Espresso Martini.

FAQ – Cold Brew Martini Recipe

Can I use cold brew instead of espresso for martini?

Yes, you can absolutely use cold brew coffee in place of espresso when making a martini. Cold brew provides a smoother, less acidic coffee flavor that blends well with the other ingredients in a martini.

What’s in a coffee martini?

A classic Coffee Martini typically includes vodka, coffee liqueur like Kahlua, and espresso or cold brew concentrate. These ingredients are shaken over ice to create a chilled and invigorating drink.

How much cold brew concentrate for Espresso Martini?

To make a Cold Brew Espresso Martini, use about 2 ounces of cold brew concentrate. This will match the typical amount of espresso used in traditional recipes and provide the right flavor balance.

Can I use cold brew instead of espresso?

Yes, cold brew is a popular substitute for espresso in coffee martinis. It offers a similar coffee taste that’s often preferred because it’s less bitter and lends a smooth finish to the cocktail.

Can you have espresso martini without Kahlua?

While Kahlua is a common choice for a Coffee Martini, you can also experiment with other coffee liqueurs or omit it entirely for a less sweet flavor profile. If you skip the coffee liqueur, consider adding a touch of simple syrup or a flavored syrup if you desire some sweetness.

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Wadim Urbanowitsch

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