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How to Make a Vesper Martini

The Vesper Martini cocktail may have been invented by author Ian Fleming in the James Bond novel Casino Royale, but this mythical beverage sometimes described as “the perfect martini” is a classic on to its own!

Vesper Martini 1

What makes this classic cocktail so poignant is that it is names after fictional double agent Vesper Lynd, James Bond’s great love interest. It was in the first James Bond novel that Ian Fleming came up what is the classic Vesper Martini recipe.

“Three measures of Gordon’s, one of vodka, half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it very well until it’s ice-cold, then add a large thin slice of lemon peel. Got it?” 

James Bond, Casino Royale

It’s a stiff drink not for the faint of heart, being a spirit-only cocktail. Unlike a classic martini recipe which uses either gin or vodka, this recipe combines Gordon’s Gin with vodka and is sweetened slightly by the Kina Lillet, a liqueur made with white wine.

Vesper Martini 2

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Where to find ingredients for Vesper Martini cocktail

You can find all the ingredients at Spirits Kiosk (10% off the entire site by quoting this code: ALushLife10SK.) in the UK; or in the USA!

What goes into a Vesper Martini recipe

Just the three spirits and an lemon peel!!

  • Gin: Although James uses Gordon’s gin, you can use any gin that you wish.
  • Vodka: The vodka gives the drink its characteristic appeal, while also adding that silky smoothness.
  • Lillet Blanc: In the original recipe, Kina Lillet is called for. Since it no longer exists, we suggest using a splash of Lillet Blanc which is a liqueur. The Lillet Blanc adds a delicate sweetness to the Vesper Martini, and its subtle flavor complements the gin and vodka perfectly.
  • Lemon Peel: The citrus oils from the peel add freshness and brightness to the cocktail. Some bartenders will even express the oils from the peel into the drink.

What tools you need to make Vesper Martini

You won’t be needing a cocktail shaker for this one! Grab a jigger, a barspoon, mixing glass, Hawthorne strainer, fine mesh strainer and Nick and Nora glass for this Vesper Martini.

Bull in China Stirred Set

You don’t have to have a special set to make a cocktail, but I have to admit that having one makes you do feel like a professional. I adore my Bull in China Stirred Set and use it every time I make cocktails at home!

It comes in a lovely fitted box, so there is no chance of breakage. Everything you need is there – the mixing glass, the bar spoon, the strainer, and the all important jigger. It’s all handmade in Portland, Oregon!

  • Step 1: Add ice to a mixing glass, then add vodka, Lillet Blanc and gin.
  • Step 2: Stir until all the ingredients are well combined and chilled.
  • Step 3: Double strain with a fine mesh strainer into the Nick and Nora glass or Martini Glass to catch the ice shards
  • Step 4: Then you can express the lemon peel over the surface of the drink
  • Step 5: Add the lemon twist to the cocktail. Bottom’s up!

Vesper Martini 3
  • 🍸Top Tip(le): It’s best if you put the gin and vodka in the freezer to get it really cold beforehand.
    • As a golden rule, the better the quality of the gin and vodka, the better the taste of the Vesper Martini.
    • Be sure to use plenty of ice when stirring the cocktail. This will help to ensure that it is properly chilled.
    • You can use dry vermouth or aromatized wine like Cocchi Americano if you prefer your Vesper cocktail recipe less sweet. Just remember that different wines add different flavors.
    • Don’t forget the garnish! A twist of lemon or lime peel adds a nice finishing touch to your drink.
    • If you cannot find Lillet Blanc, you can use any other aromatized wine like Cocci Americano.

Where to find more Martini variation recipes

You can find loads of other martini recipes to try! Here are a few of my favorites:

 Plus more Martini recipes here

Here is the recipe!

How to Make a Vesper Martini

Vesper Martini

The Vesper Martini may have been invented by Ian Fleming, but this mythical beverage described as "the perfect martini" is a classic on to its own!
No ratings yet
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Cocktails
Cuisine British
Servings 1
Calories 260 kcal


  • 3 oz Gin
  • 1 oz Vodka
  • 1/2 oz Lillet Blanc
  • Lemon Peel


  • Combine the gin, vodka, and Lillet Blanc in a mixing glass filled with ice
  • Stir until chilled
  • Strain into a Nick and Nora glass
  • Express the lemon peel and then add to the cocktail


Serving: 1gCalories: 260kcalCarbohydrates: 1gSodium: 1mgFiber: 1g
Keyword Vesper Martini
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