We love a good cocktail trend. We especially love it when it’s both delicious on its own and when we can make it even more delicious by adding popcorn. Behold, the popcorn espresso martini!
And yes, we know it’s not actually, technically a martini because it does not contain vermouth. It also uses vodka instead of gin and that’s a whole debate which we’re not going to get into because this drink is too delicious to argue about.
If, for some reason, you have not yet been exposed to the world of espresso martinis, let us enlighten you and, possibly, convert you. It’s basically an alcoholic drink made with vodka, coffee liqueur like Kahlua or Tia Maria, simple syrup and the all important espresso. Between the alcohol and the caffeine, it’s quite a punchy drink.
Nobody seems to be completely sure where this drink originated and there are several claims about who invented it. Some of them quite colorful. But it definitely became very trendy over the past year or so with requests for it in bars and recipes popping up all over social media.
However it came to be, though, we love it. To be quite frank, some of us weren’t 100% sure that we would. Our group is divided between espresso lovers and espresso haters so the idea of this drink was met with mixed enthusiasm. But we’re here to tell you that the hype is worth it. If you’re in the anti-espresso camp and are worried that this drink will be too dark or bitter, don’t be. There’s enough sweetness from the coffee liqueur and the simple syrup to knock back the coffee a lot.
You can buy pre-made popcorn flavored syrup but it can get a little artificial tasting. And making it at home is so simple. We actually took our shortcut with the espresso and used a can of Starbucks doubleshot espresso with cream. But if you’re an avid home espresso brewer then go for it.
Typically an espresso martini is topped with a few espresso beans. But since we used popcorn syrup, we topped our drinks with fresh popcorn. We also recommend serving a big bowl of popcorn with the drink. And then maybe making a second round and refilling the popcorn bowl. It’s good, people, it’s really good.
To make the popcorn syrup, add the water, granulated sugar and sea salt to a pot and bring to a simmer. Cook on low heat for a couple of minutes until the sugar has dissolved. Stir in the popcorn, remove from the heat and allow to cool.
Pour into a jar with a tight fitting lid and place in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours. Strain out the popcorn and store the syrup in the refrigerator for up to one week.
To make the espresso martini, add the vodka, popcorn syrup, coffee liqueur and espresso to a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice, shake well and pour into two glasses. Top with popcorn.
Note: After you've poured out the liquid, take the cap off the shaker and spoon on some of the foam that's built up to get more of that white foamy head on the drink.
Share your creations with us on Instagram! Tag you creation with #dellcovespices and we would love to give you a shout-out!