How to Make a Vesper Martini Like Bond, James Bond

PREP TIME 5 min

Cocktail Type

Martini

Great for

Dinner Party

Difficulty

Easy

Close-up of Vesper Martini, garnished with a lemon twist

There are so many different types of martinis, but the one that stands out from the crowd is the Vesper Martini. This famous James Bond drink is simple to make and will leave you with plenty of time to mingle with your friends.  

When you stir this up, expect one result: a little taste of danger before dinner. But be warned, you should probably only do one per guest. As Casino Royale author Ian Fleming once said: “I never have more than one drink before dinner. But I do like that one to be large and very strong and very cold and very well-made. I hate small portions of anything, particularly when they taste bad.”

How to make the famous Vesper Martini in four simple steps

You don’t need to be a Bond Girl, Miss Moneypenny, or even the man himself to make this classic cocktail. All you need is some good quality gin, vodka, a dash of vermouth, and a constitution that can handle a strong drink. Our Vesper Martini recipe is one for the books and definitely worth a try. 

QUICK TIPS

01

Chill your martini glasses in the freezer for about 30 minutes to an hour before serving.

02

For a more diluted and slightly less potent Vesper Martini, shake the ingredients in a cocktail shaker instead of stirring.

03

Vodka and gin are the stars of this Martini show (sorry James). So make sure you reach for premium brands.

INGREDIENTS

MAKE FOR

1 Person

3 Oz

90 Ml

3 Parts

Bulldog Gin
1 Oz

30 Ml

1 Parts

SKYY Vodka
0.5 Oz

15 Ml

0.5 Parts

Cinzano Bianco
1
Dash of bitters
Lemon peel, to garnish
Ice

INSTRUCTIONS

01

Pour the gin, vodka, vermouth and bitters into a mixing glass filled with ice

02

Stir until icy cold

03

Strain into a chilled martini glass

04

Garnish with a slice of lemon peel 

Vesper Martini: to shake or to stir?

James Bond will be the first to tell you that he likes it shaken, not stirred. But what’s the difference in taste? As it turns out, quite a lot! When you shake this drink, the Vesper Martini ingredients will become overly diluted—and there’s nothing dangerous or spy-worthy about that!  

We love to experiment with cocktails—but when it comes to this classic recipe (and if you’re aiming for the perfect serve) this is it. When making spirit-based cocktails, the rule is to stir the ingredients until chilled (around 30 seconds) before straining it into a glass. Turns out as cunning and street smart as he is, even 007 can get it wrong.  

The best gin or vodka for Vesper Martini

Unlike other popular martini recipes, this one calls for both gin and vodka—and for a good reason. The vodka helps calm down the overpowering taste of juniper berries from the gin and helps make it a drier drink. If you want to be a purist, reach for a top-shelf gin like Bulldog.  

When it comes to vodka, Bond doesn’t have a preference, but we suggest a high-quality vodka like SKYY. As for the vermouth, if you want something close to the original James Bond martini recipe, choose Cinzano Bianco and a dash of bitters. It’s one of the most famous vermouths in the world and easy to get your hands on. 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

This martini is named after Vesper Lynd, a fictional character and double agent in Ian Fleming's Casino Royale. She is the first Bond Girl, and legend has it she was his first true love...although definitely not his last!  

The Vesper is slightly sweet and bitter with herbal tones and a dry finish.  

Both! James Bond drinks both vodka martinis and gin martinis in Fleming's books. But, when it comes to the movies, vodka was the sexier, more popular choice, with no gin in sight.  

The short answer? Strong! Once you've had one, you definitely have a license to drink. With a potent mix of four-and-a-half ounces of liquor, this is not a cocktail for the novice drinker.