It’s no surprise the Espresso Martini inspires such enduring devotion. The one-two punch of coffee and liquor is a near perfect combination.
In the past few years it’s reached new heights thanks to a rise in coffee culture and bartenders’ increasing willingness to experiment and redefine what the caffeinated cocktail can be.
It comes at the right time, then, that Adelaide has scored its very own Espresso Martini festival. The two-day event – from catering company Steve the Bartender – will be held in Rymill Park on February 2 and 3.
At the centre of the event is an Espresso Martini competition starring some of Adelaide’s best cocktail shakers. Bartenders from BRKLYN, La Moka, Alfred’s Bar, Bank Street Social, Electra House, Mr Goodbar, The William Bligh and Mississippi Moon will compete to make and claim Adelaide’s best Espresso Martini.
Judges include chef Shannon Fleming (ex-Blackwood), spirits expert Mark Reginato (Man of Spirit), barista Joshua Rivers (C.R.E.A.M), cocktail master Vini Wang (Hains & Co) and distiller Graham Buller (23rd Street Distillery). There’s also a People’s Choice Award, so get sipping.
Beyond the caffeinated cocktail there will be other classic mixes plus wine and cider from Sidewood and beer from Vale Brewing. Abbots and Kinney, Jack Ruby, BRKLYN, Electra House and more are on food duty.
A strictly limited, two-hour spirit tasting session run by the founders of new online bottle shop Harvest Liquor will feature local distillers. At just $10 per person, it’s a steal.
Espresso Martini Festival is on Friday February 2 from 5pm to 11pm and Saturday February 3 from 12pm to 11pm at Rymill Park. Tickets are $30 and available online. A VIP ticket ($100) to "White Marquee Martini Island" includes festival entry plus access to an exclusive bar and four free cocktails from Antipodes Gin Company.