22 Types of Martinis You Should Know

April 25, 2022 by Michelle Randall

Jump to:

Martinis are some of the most well-loved cocktails, mostly because there are now so many types of martinis to choose from. While the traditional martini combines gin and vermouth, many of the more modern, fruity iterations are made with flavored vodkas and liquors.

Want to impress your friends with different types of martinis? Discover some of the most common martinis below and learn how to whip them up for your next get-together.

1. Classic Martini

Gin Martini garnished with olives

Before we dive into the many types of martinis that exist nowadays, let’s go back to where it all began. One of the best cocktails for beginners, a Classic Martini calls for a simple mix of gin and vermouth, with a garnish of either cocktail olives or a lemon twist. Perhaps just as iconic as the cocktail itself is the signature V-shaped glass that it’s poured into. Designed to keep the drink chilled, many other kinds of martinis are still served in these today.

2. Dirty Martini

Dirty Martini garnished with olives

A Dirty Martini takes the core ingredients of a Classic Martini – gin and vermouth – and adds one (rather unexpected) ingredient: olive brine. By adding a dash of olive brine, the drink is given a uniquely salty and savory flavor that many people love. Dirty Martinis are made with dry vermouth and deciding what type of vermouth to use for Dirty Martinis and the ratio of vermouth to gin used will impact the overall flavor.

3. Pornstar Martini

Pornstar Martini Cocktails

Created in London in the noughties, the tropical-inspired Pornstar Martini was the brainchild of bartender Douglas Ankrah. Containing vodka, passionfruit liqueur, passionfruit juice and lime juice, a freshly cut passion fruit half is added on top to garnish. What really sets the Pornstar apart from other types of Martinis, however, is the shot of Prosecco on the side.

4. Espresso Martini

Front view of three decadent Espresso Martini cocktails served with sweet and savory snacks

Coffee lovers will adore the rich, creamy flavors of the Espresso Martini recipe. A smooth bittersweet cocktail, it brings together fresh espresso and coffee liqueur with a rewarding foam layer on top. Perfect for when you need perking up, it makes for a great after-dinner cocktail.

5. Vodka Martini

Virgin Martini

If gin is not your thing, the Vodka Martini might be more up your street. Vodka has a more neutral taste than gin, resulting in a smoother flavor that allows the vermouth to shine through. Many of the more innovative ‘Martini’ drinks found on cocktail menus are actually types of Vodka Martinis.

6. Chocolate Martini

Lush Chocolate Martini cocktails garnished with chocolate sprinkles

The Chocolate Martini is a chocolate lovers’ dream. Chocolate liqueur and vodka are shaken together with ice, which is then added to a glass with a cocoa-powder dipped rim. Serve as a delicious dessert cocktail to round off your dinner party menu.

7. Apple Martini

Homemade Green Alcoholic Appletini Cocktail with Apple Garnish

Apple Martinis pack a sour punch thanks to the combination of sour apple schnapps and lemon juice. Fruity and refreshing, the ‘Appletini’ as it’s also known, is an ideal type of Martini to serve at a summer picnic or garden party.

8. Pomegranate Martini

Pomegranate Martini

A Pomegranate Martini is similar to a Cosmopolitan but uses pomegranate juice instead of cranberry. This vodka-based Martini makes a great choice when the sun is shining, and BBQ season is in full swing.

9. Reverse Martini

Close up of a drink with orange peel

Flipping the ratio of gin to vermouth in a Martini creates what’s known as a Reverse Martini, although you may also hear it referred to as a ‘wet’ or an ‘upside down’ Martini. This simple switch puts all the focus on the vermouth and lowers the overall alcohol content, making it a great pre-dinner aperitif to kick off the night.

10. Blue Martini

Blue Martini with a lemon twist garnish

Like many blue cocktails, the Blue Martini gets its striking blue hue from blue curaçao. As if the ocean blue hue isn’t enticing enough, the tropical flavors coming from the pineapple and citrus will make you feel like you’re on vacation.

11. Eggnog Martini

Homemade Eggnog Martini in a Glass

The best type of Martini for the holidays, eggnog fans will go crazy for this seasonal spiced Eggnog Martini cocktail. Vanilla vodka and amaretto liqueur come together with spicy cinnamon and nutmeg to create a drink that tastes like Christmas.

12. French Martini

Two French martinis on an outdoor table facing the Eiffel Tower

Despite its name, the French Martini actually hails from New York. Bartender Allen Katz came up with the creation in the eighties and it’s one of the fruitiest types of Vodka Martinis around. Made with just 3 ingredients—vodka, pineapple juice and raspberry liqueur—you don’t need to be a pro mixologist to try this one at home.

13. Vesper Martini

Martini with a twist of lemon on wooden bakground

Hosting a James Bond themed party? The Vesper Martini was made famous by 007 himself and gets its name from Bond girl Vesper Lynd, the love interest in the first James Bond novel, Casino Royale. Bond’s original mix contained gin, vodka and Kina Lillet, a now-discontinued bitter aperitif and was served—of course—shaken, not stirred. These days, the Kina Lillet is usually substituted with either Lillet Blanc or Cocchi Americano.

14. Mexican Martini

Mexican Martini - The Mexican Martini, a flavorful and zesty cocktail.

A Mexican Martini is essentially a Margarita with a Dirty Martini twist. This tangy blend of tequila, lime, and dry vermouth is served in a salt-rimmed glass and adorned with a slice of lime and olive.

15. Gibson Cocktail

Gibson Martini with skewered cocktail onion garnish

The Gibson cocktail was on everyone’s lips thanks to its cameo in the multi-award-winning Netflix series The Queen’s Gambit. Combining Bulldog Gin, Cinzano Vermouth Bianco, and the delightful acrid bite of a pickled cocktail onion, this drink is an acquired taste, but a true classic.

16. Lemon Drop Martini

Two pretty Lemon Drop Martinis on a glass table, garnished with a sugar rim each

Perky and pretty with a tempting sugar rim, the Lemon Drop Martini was named after a zesty candy popular in the 1970s. Odds are you’ve probably seen it in your granny’s candy bowl. Happily, the cocktail itself is not fuddy-duddy by any means. Combining SKYY Infusions® Citrus Vodka, Grand Marnier, lemon juice, and simple syrup, it’s a lively sip with plenty of pep.

17. Cucumber Martini

Cucumber martini close up with a sliver or cucumber on a cocktail pick

Cool, crisp, and clear, our Cucumber Martini is a deliciously different sip that is tailor-made for a summery cocktail hour. It also makes a wonderful counterpoint to smokey, meaty flavors, so try serving it at your next summer barbecue.

18. Watermelon Martini

Two Watermelon Martinis garnished with a lemon wedge and slice of watermelon each, against a blue backdrop

The humble watermelon is perhaps one of nature’s most versatile fruits, and we love using it to brighten up a summertime Martini. Create a refreshing Watermelon Martini at home by combining SKYY Vodka, fresh lime juice, and ripe watermelon. A great tip for leftover fruit is to freeze it in cubes to use in smoothies or more martinis later.

19. Cranberry Martini

A pretty Cranberry Martini garnished with fresh cranberries, against a white backdrop studded with pine cones and ginger biscuits in the shape of stars

Particularly popular around the holidays, the festive Cranberry Martini is a dainty drink that has a zingy bite of bitter-sweetness thanks to the addition of fresh Cranberry juice. If you love a Vodka Cranberry, this is a drink you’ve got to try!

20. Key Lime Martini

Indulgent Key Lime Martini with coconut and lime garnish and a palm frond in the background

Made with SKYY Vanilla Vodka, key lime juice, cream of coconut, pineapple juice, and heavy cream, the Key Lime Martini will go down an absolute treat. Just be sure to use cream of coconut, not coconut cream – the former is a syrupy ingredient rather than the creamy one you get in a tin.

21. Pear Martini

Pear Martinis with sliced pear garnish against a neutral backdrop with fresh pears in the foreground

Perfect for fall, the crisp Pear Martini is quick to whip up and only requires four ingredients. It combines pear-flavored vodka, elderflower liqueur, lemon juice, and simple syrup. You can also make it a little stronger by using dry vermouth in place of the lemon juice and syrup if you’re keen on an extra kick.

22. Peppermint Martini

Two Peppermint Martinis with candy rims against a snowy backdrop with Christmas decorations to the side

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, Peppermint Martinis, and warm woolen mittens… These are a few of our favorite things when the festive season rolls around! Creamy and minty fresh, this cocktail will be the cherry on top of your holiday menu.

Watch: How to strain your cocktails like a pro


The three types of martinis refer to the three martinis that most bartenders will know how to make from memory—the Dirty, the Vesper, and the Gibson.

This is entirely up to you and your flavor preferences. Traditionalists argue that the best type of Martini is the classic Gin Martini there are so many different kinds of martinis to try.

A traditional Martini contains gin and vermouth, while a Dirty Martini has a dash of olive brine added, usually taken from the bottom of a jar of olives used for garnishing. The olive brine gives Dirty Martinis a salty, acidic flavour, making it one of the few savory cocktails.

If you’d like your Martini sans vermouth, ask your bartender for it ‘bone dry’ and they’ll whip you one up that contains either very little or no vermouth.

Now known by many as the ‘James Bond Martini’, 007’s drink of choice in Casino Royale is the Vesper Martini. In the 1953 book, Ian Fleming writes that it’s made by shaking together gin, vodka and Kina Lillet.

Stay in the mix

Sign up to our drinkspiration newsletter.