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32 Best Gin Martinis (+Recipes)

Best Gin Martinis

There’s nothing quite like the sophistication and refinement of a perfectly crafted gin martini.

These gin martini recipes are sure to elevate cocktail hour.

From classic gimlets to more modern twists, these gin martinis are sure to impress.

Whether it’s a fancy soirée or a cozy night in, shake (or stir) things up with the best gin martinis.

But first …

Here are the types of gin martinis in this listicle:

  • a “clean” martini is made without a garnish
  • a “dirty” martini is served with a garnish
  • a “dry” martini uses less vermouth
  • a “wet” martini uses more vermouth
  • a “perfect” martini uses equal parts gin (or vodka) and vermouth
  • a “extra dirty” or “filthy” martini adds extra brine
  • a “neat” martini uses room temperature ingredients, which are not shaken or stirred over ice

Best Gin Martinis

Without further ado, the best gin martinis ever!

1. Classic Dirty Gin Martini

This classic martini is easy to master. The olives create a salty drink that’s perfect for sipping — the olives are a bonus snack.

Want more boozy inspiration? Try 30 Best Amarula Cocktails.

What is a dirty martini?

A “clean” martini is served without a garnish. “Dirty” martinis usually add an olive and olive brine. But olives aren’t your only option. Try onion, capers, pickle, lemon, and other garnishes. Specify ‘extra dirty’ or ‘filthy’ if you want more brine. Most bartenders add equal parts brine and vermouth.

2. The Vesper Martini

The Vesper is a gin-based cocktail that traditionally includes vodka and Kina Lillet. The original form of Lillet is no longer available, so contemporary versions of the cocktail may require adjustments in order to replicate the original flavor.

What was 007 drinking in Spectre? James Bond shook things up with dirty martini in Spectre with vodka, vermouth, muddled Sicilian green olive, and olive brine.

Did you know? Shaking a martini dilutes it. Stir for a stiffer drink.

3. Gibson Gin Martini

The Gibson is the Martini’s savory cousin. It uses a pickled onion in place of the typical olive to add an umami undertone to the classic drink.

Make it “filthy” adding extra onion brine according to your taste.

4. Original Martini

Add a splash of lemon juice to dirty up the an original martini.

The original martini was made with gin (not vodka) and sweet Italian vermouth along with sugar syrup and orange bitters.

Classic gin martinis use just dry French vermouth and an olive (or lemon peel) garnish.

5. Dill Pickle Martini

Dill pickle martinis are surprisingly good! 

My favorite are snappy gerkin pickles which pair perfectly with gin.

6. Perfect Martini

“Perfect” martinis uses equal parts of sweet and dry vermouth.

The perfect martini is a gin-based version that calls for premium ingredients.

London dry gin is a good choice. Serve with extra olives and splash the olive brine liberally.

7. Dry Martini

A dirty, dry martini? Yes, please.

Revel in the umaminess of the whole endeavor. 

If you prefer your martini “extra dry,” you can reduce the amount of vermouth used or omit it entirely.

Some people also like to add a dash of orange bitters to their dry martini for added depth of flavor.

8. Filthy Gin Martini

I’m partial to the classics. This classic gin martini contains gin and dry vermouth served very cold with an olive or lemon garnish.

Make sure your gin and vermouth are premium—the cheap brands won’t do.

Your vermouth should also be fresh. After it is opened, vermouth has a shelf life of only three months.

Whether shaken or stirred, you’ll feel classier after your first sip of a premium gin martini.

9. Chai Espresso Martini

I love garnishing my dirty espresso martini with shaved chocolate!

Feel free to get creative on the toppings. Try adding adding crushed Oreos to the rim or flavored chocolate whipped cream.

Use high-quality gin, as well as fresh chai tea and a strong espresso shot. The quality of your ingredients will greatly impact the flavor of your final cocktail.

10. Martini Shots

This shot iteration of the dirty martini is revelatory.

The ratio of gin or vodka to other ingredients can be adjusted to taste.

Feel free to play around with different ratios to find the perfect balance of flavors for your taste buds.

A shot glass with a narrow base will help prevent the Martini Shot from spilling when you take it.

11. Spectacular Dirty Martini Salad

Many enjoy a salad martini without hesitation, but others fear the judgery that martini purists have for this “healthy” version.

To add a unique twist to a simple greens salad, try dressing it with an olive-based dressing and serving it in martini glasses.

The addition of a shot glass filled with the dressing makes for a fun and visually appealing presentation.

12. Reverse Martini

A Reverse Martini, which means that the usual ratio of gin to vermouth has been turned on its head.

Instead of the usual ratio, this cocktail features a larger amount of vermouth, giving it a depth of flavor and a richness that is simply unparalleled.

The Reverse Martini is a cocktail so daring, so bold, it practically begs to be savored and sipped slowly, savoring every last drop.

Feeling really creative? Freeze your green olive brine

13. Dirty, Sopping-Wet Martini

Like your martini wet?

Equal parts gin and vermouth, manzanilla olives and a splash of olive brine adds notes that wet and dirty martini lovers crave.

The term “sopping-wet” refers to the use of a larger amount of vermouth than is typically used in a traditional dry martini.

14. Aviation Cocktail

Aviation gin and créme de violette are the key ingredients.

Splash olive juice until the concoction goes down nice and smooth, without the slightest pucker.

The floral taste is accents the maraschino liqueur, and lemon juice.

15. Saketini

Toss a pickle in your Saketini (instead of cucumber) to stir things up a little.

Look for sake that is made with good-quality rice and water, and consider trying a variety of different brands and styles to find the one that you like best.

Some people prefer a stronger gin flavor in their Saketini, while others prefer a more balanced blend of the two ingredients

16. Lemon Drop Martini

The lemon drop martini is so easy. You just need premium gin, lemon juice, and simple syrup.

The lemon juice provide a strong, clean flavor. Overall, a Lemon Drop Martini tastes refreshing and citrusy, with a smooth and slightly sweet finish.

Some variations may also include additional ingredients such as triple sec or lemon-flavored liqueur to add extra depth of flavor.

Regardless of the specific ingredients used, a Lemon Drop Martini is typically a light and refreshing cocktail that is perfect for sipping.

17. Empress Martini

A dirty cocktail martini fit for a queen. 

The appearance of an Empress Martini is typically light purple or lavender in color, due to the presence of the Empress 1908 Gin.

This gin is made with a blend of botanicals including butterfly pea blossom, which gives it its distinctive color.

In terms of taste, an Empress Martini is typically smooth and floral, with a balanced blend of botanical flavors and a hint of sweetness.

These flavors combine with the other ingredients in the cocktail to create a unique and sophisticated flavor profile.

18. Martinez

The Martinez was likely the predecessor to the martini.

A Martinez gin drink is a type of cocktail that is made with gin, sweet vermouth, maraschino liqueur, and bitters.

The appearance of a Martinez gin drink is typically a rich amber color, due to the presence of the sweet vermouth and maraschino liqueur.

In terms of taste, a Martinez gin drink is typically rich and complex, with a balanced blend of botanical flavors and a hint of sweetness.

Overall, a Martinez gin drink is a sophisticated and well-balanced cocktail that is perfect for sipping on its own or as an aperitif before a meal.

19. Gimlet

The gin Gimlet is a classic cocktail featuring gin and lime juice, typically mixed with simple syrup or Rose’s Lime Juice.

It is typically a pale green or yellow color, due to the presence of the lime juice.

In terms of taste, a gin Gimlet is typically tart and refreshing, with a strong lime flavor balanced by the sweetness of the simple syrup or Rose’s Lime Juice.

Some variations of the Gimlet may also include additional ingredients such as cucumber, mint, or other citrus juices to add extra depth of flavor.

20. Twentieth Century Cocktail

A Twentieth Century Cocktail is made with gin, Lillet Blanc, lemon juice, and crème de cacao.

The taste is typically complex and well-balanced, with a combination of sweet, tart, and botanical flavors. While the crème de cacao provides a rich and chocolatey flavor.

The specific flavor profile of the cocktail may vary depending on the type of gin and the proportions of the ingredients used.

This well-balanced cocktail that is perfect for sipping on its own or as an aperitif before a meal.

21. 50/50 Martini

The 50/50 Martini is a equal parts gin and vodka. A concoction of pure elegance and sophistication, worthy of the most discerning palate.

Each sip is a revelation, a celebration of the art of mixology.

Imagine, if you will, a crystal clear gin, perfectly balanced with the smooth, velvety texture of vodka.

These two ingredients come together in perfect harmony, creating a symphony of flavors on your tongue.

22. Watermelon Gin Martini

It’s a budget drink of gin and watermelon sloshing around in a glass.

It’s a nice boozy drink you can totally serve with watermelon slices.

Cheap and easy. You’ll like it, too.

23. Cucumber Wasabi Martini

This gin martini tipple just sounds sooo cool!

Cucumber Wasabi Martini is a crisp, refreshing drink infused with the subtle, earthy flavors of cucumber and the sharp, spicy kick of wasabi.

As these ingredients come together in perfect harmony, they create a flavor profile that is both sophisticated and daring, challenging your taste buds and your senses.

24. Chartreuse Martini

A tall, slender glass filled with gin and a splash of chartreuse, a delightful, green French liqueur with a complex and herbaceous flavor.

As you take your first sip of this gin Martini, you’ll be transported to a world of luxury and refinement.

The crisp flavors will invigorate your senses, while the elegant presentation will have you feeling like the star of the show.

25. Gin Blossom

Serve in a coupe glass and garnish with citrus peel.

This elegant sipper mashes fruity apricot notes and orange bitters.

The drink calls for Plymouth gin and vanilla-y Martini bianco vermouth.

26. Lavender Martini

The Lavender Martini will transport you to a field of blooming lavender.

You’ll be swept away by its delicate, floral flavors and its sophisticated, elegant presentation.

Whether you’re enjoying it at a formal event or simply relaxing at home, the Lavender Martini is sure to impress and delight.

27. Hanky Panky

The Hanky Panky cocktail is a sweet gin martini, balanced between sweet, bitter and herbal flavors.

It was invented by a famous woman bartender in the 1920’s named Ada Coleman.

Fernet-Branca is an Italian bitter: a liqueur made with a mix of herbs and spices.

The Hanky Panky is garnished with an orange twist.

28. Elderflower Martini

The elderflower gin martini has flowery notes from elderflower liqueur, chased by tart lime.

Elderflower’s taste profile is floral, fruity, fresh, and green with hints of tropical pear and lychee.

Sip. Sip. Hooray!

Related: 10 Best Blueberry Gin Cocktails

29. Lemon “Neat” Martini No. 1

Lemon and orange bitters make this “neat” (room temperature) martini a bit “dirty”. See what I did there?

A neat martini is also served straight up, without ice.

Neat cocktails are typically served in a small glass and are meant to be sipped slowly, allowing the flavors of the spirits to be fully appreciated.

Neat martinis are strong and smooth, the lack of ice or other mixers allows the full flavor of the spirit to shine through.

Overall, a neat martini is a classic and sophisticated cocktail that is perfect for sipping.

30. Tanqueray No. Ten Martini

If you love Tanqueray gin this martini is for you.

It’s good. Really good.

31. Fishy & Dirty Pintxotini

Fish sauce, oysters, smoked salmon, peppers, and onions take the dirty Martini to another level.

At Ernesto’s in New York City, dirty martinis come with a skewer of layered anchovies, olives, pickled guindilla peppers, Spanish gin, dry vermouth and olive brine.

This outside-the-box drink uses fish sauce in place of olive brine for a savory martini experience.

32. Lemon Basil Martini

My homemade dirty martinis have also slipped into a filthy riot of olive brine, stuffed olives, and herbs that most gin lovers would scoff at.

But almost everyone admits they’d take a dirty martini over its drier cousin anytime.

Cheers!