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How to make James Bond’s favourite drink at home for National Martini Day

The head bartender at London’s legendary Dukes bar shares his most popular cocktail recipes

Sean Connery in Dr No drinking a martini

It’s one of the most famous drinks in the world, synonymous with one of film and literature’s most infamous characters, James Bond. When he utters the immortal line, “shaken, not stirred”, there is no doubt as to which cocktail he is talking about – the classic martini. And when it comes to finding somewhere to enjoy his favourite tipple for yourself, there is only one place in London to go: Duke’s Bar at Dukes Hotel.

It was here that the author Ian Fleming came to drink dry martinis, served from an elegant martini trolley, and where he invented the Vesper martini, named after Bond’s love interest Vesper Lynd in Fleming’s first novel, Casino Royale. And while the hotel’s doors may remain closed for the time being, that doesn’t mean you can’t recreate some of its cocktail magic in your own home. Here, ahead of National Martini Day, Dukes’ longtime bar manager Alessandro Palazzi shares his tried and tested recipes for making the perfect martini.

A Classic Martini at Dukes bar

Classic Martini

Ingredients

One frozen Martini glass
100ml frozen No. 3 Gin, from Berry Bros. & Rudd
5ml Sacred Dry vermouth, from Sacred Spirits
One zest of an organic Amalfi lemon (unwaxed)

Description:

The original and the best, this classic drink has earned itself legendary status. It’s made with just two key ingredients – gin and dry vermouth – which means they need to be of the highest quality.

Method:

Drop 5ml of Sacred Dry Vermouth into the frozen glass, then top the glass up with 100ml of the frozen No.3 Gin. Finish off with a large twist of zest of an organic Amalfi lemon, and squeeze the lemon zest to extract the fragrant oils. Finally, gently swirl the lemon zest around the rim and drop it into the glass.

A Vesper Martini at Dukes bar

Vesper Martini

Ingredients

One frozen Martini glass
Four dashes of Angostura Bitters
10ml Sacred English Amber Vermouth
80ml frozen No.3 Gin
20ml frozen Potocki vodka
One zest of an organic Seville orange​

Description:

This potent take on the original combines both gin and vodka to pack a mighty punch. Here the vodka used is Polish Potocki, a nod to the real-life inspiration for Vesper Lynd, Polish-born Christine Granville, a wartime spy who was said to be Fleming’s lover.

Method:

Drop four dashes of Angostura Bitters into the frozen glass before adding 10ml of Sacred English Amber Vermouth, 20ml frozen Potocki and 80ml frozen No.3 Gin. Finish off with a large twist of the zest of an organic Seville orange, and squeeze the orange zest to extract the fragrant oils. Finally, gently swirl the orange zest around the rim of the glass and before dropping it in.

An Oddjob Martini at Dukes bar

Oddjob Martini

Ingredients

One mixing glass
One frozen Martini glass
One pinch of saffron (which is about 20 medium saffron threads) 80ml Konik's Tail Vodka
10ml Sacred English Amber Vermouth
10ml Galliano L'Autentico
One zest of an organic Seville orange​

Description:

Named after the villainous henchman from Goldfinger, this twist on the martini sees the addition of delicate saffron, which lends the drinks its warm golden hue.

Method:

Fill the mixing glass full of ice cubes (preferably to freeze it) before adding a pitch of saffron to the mixing glass and stirring. Then top it up with 80ml Konik’s Tail Vodka and 10ml Sacred English Amber Vermouth, stirring in between, before adding 10ml Galliano L’Autentico liqueur. Pour into the frozen martini glass and finish off with a large twist of the zest of an organic Seville orange, before squeezing the orange zest to extract the fragrant oils. Finally, gently swirl the orange zest around the rim of the glass and drop it in.

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