Drink of the Week: Espresso Martini at MKT

Lou Bustamante
A cuppa boozy joe
Don't let the name scare you. The Espresso Martini ($14, Charbay Vanilla Rum, Firelit Blue Bottle, Kuchan Nocino, St. George Single Malt, espresso) at MKT, the recently renovated bar inside the Four Seasons Hotel on Market Street, is simultaneously everything and nothing you expect from the drink. If you are expecting a late-'90s era drink, sickly sweet and served in a martini glass, you'll be disappointed. Or relieved as we were.

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Served in a large coffee cup instead of a martini glass, and accented with a single coffee bean on a plush cloud of foam made from the whipped cocktail, it is like drinking a lightly sweetened cup of iced espresso. "I have long battled for my love with espresso, and my distaste for too sweet drinks," says bar manager Oliver Lee. "I created this for the espresso lover, not as a dessert cocktail."

Don't tell Lee, but this blend of whiskey, rum, coffee, and two different liqueurs also happens to make an excellent post-dessert digestif. The blend of locally produced liquor, including the wonderfully deep and rich Kuchan Nocino Black Walnut Liqueur made in Belmont by Old World Spirits, all work to enhance rather than hide the coffee flavor.

Espresso Martini

1 oz. Charbay Vanilla Rum
1 oz. Espresso
¾ oz. Coffee liqueur
½ oz. Kuchan Nocino Black Walnut Liqueur
¼ oz. St. George Single Malt
½ oz. Simple Syrup

Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a coffee cup. Create a froth using a hand-held milk frother (you can get one at IKEA for $2.50) create layer of foam. Garnish with a single coffee bean.

MKT Restaurant - Bar (5th Floor of the Four Seasons), 757 Market (at Yerba Buena Lane), 633-3000

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Location Info



MKT Restaurant – Bar

757 Market St., San Francisco, CA

Category: Music

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