Garnished with coffee beans, the espresso martini is the sexiest way to get your booze and caffeine kick in one fell swoop.
We’ve got Kate Moss to thank for this caffeinated cocktail … the story goes that back in the early 1990s, the supermodel walked in to a Soho bar and asked bartender Dick Bradsell for something that would: "pick me up and f*ck me up". Bradsell blended an espresso with a martini and the rest is history.
Word is the key to a good espresso martini is to use a high quality espresso shot and with a good slug of alcohol, you'll get more than just a caffeine kick!
Here are the best espresso martinis in Brisbane to get into as soon as the clock strikes 5 o'clock!
Brew Café & Wine Bar
With the name Brew Cafe & Wine Bar, you’d expect the team to a stellar Espresso Martini and these guys don’t disappoint with four variations to choose from made on bases of bourbon, black coffee liqueur, rum or Drambuie. Our favourite was the Le Chocolate made with Evan Williams Bourbon, Mr Black Coffee Liqueur, Mozart Chocolate Liqueur, Louie Louie Espresso and chocolate syrup.
Ask anyone in Brisbane where to get a good espresso martini and in most cases, the New York-style Bowery Bar will almost always make the list. You may need to fight your way through the crowd to reach the bar, but we can tell you, it’s worth the wait.
We didn’t think it was possible to improve on the standard Espresso Martini, but Madame Wu has gone above and beyond with their Malteser Espresso Martini. A shaken blend of Mozart chocolate crème, Tia Maria, a double shot of espresso and honeycomb, it’s a chocoholic’s dream.
A sophisticated taste of Italy with killer views of the Brisbane river, Bar Pacino is an espresso bar by day, making the seamless transition to cocktail bar and bistro once the sun goes down. Given that coffee is part of what makes this venue so great, it’s no surprise they can shake an Espresso Martinis that’s among the best in Brisbane. Saluti!
Pony Lounge & Dining
When it comes to their cocktail list, Pony Lounge & Dining likes to twist things up and their ode to the espresso martini does just that. Made with Don Julio Anejo tequila, dark chocolate liqueur, cinnamon agave, espresso Spicy, rich and robust, the Jalisco Java is shaken over ice and served straight up.
Emporium Hotel’s Espresso Martini has stood the test of time with it’s blend of Absolut Vodka, Tia Maria, Dark Espresso Coffee Liqueur, Massenez Brown Crème de Cacao, Caramel Syrup & a shot of espresso coffee. Not for the faint hearted, it will certainly get your heart started.
Known for it’s mouth-watering menu, Gerard’s Bistro is one of our favourite places to eat on James Street, so we were thrilled to discover their ode to the espresso martini is just as delicious as the food they plate up. With a base of Absolut Elyx Vodka features freshly ground Lavazza coffee, Kahlua and vanilla sugar syrup.
Soak up the warmth and sunshine of a Brisbane summer from the sleek and stylish Stokehouse and sip your worries away with the Mexicano, a heavenly blend of Belvedere vodka, Avion espresso tequila and a shot of espresso.
Story Bridge Hotel
Forget one shot of alcohol, the Story Bridge Hotel’s Espresso Martini is made with Absolut Vanilla Vodka, Kahlua and Frangelico with the required shot of vodka, guaranteeing that it will leave you buzzing long after your glass is empty.
The perfect go-to cocktail for after-work drinks, Cru Bar serve up not one but four variations of the espresso martini, all with a foundation of Belvedere vodka. If you like your caffeine extra hot, try the Tiger Blood with butterscotch schnapps, chilli sugar syrup and an espresso shot.
Although predominantly a whisky bar, Cobbler in West End know the importance of a good espresso martini to get you through the week so they mix up a heart-racing blend of vodka, Licor 43, white chocolate and coffee. But be warned, with more coffee than alcohol, it will keep you awake long into the night!
Soleil Pool Bar
Best described as sipping on tiramisu, the Velvet Downtime at Soleil Pool Bar is a dessert-style martini with it’s blend of Patron XO Café Dark, Licor 43 and fresh espresso. Shaken and stirred in a chilled glass, it’s topped with grated dark chocolate.
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Image credit: Ariana Gillrie