Whatever your feelings are about it, the Pornstar Martini is a modern classic. Throughout its history, the UK's love for it has never wavered, from its London cocktail revolution roots to its ready-to-drink version. In fact, two decades after its creation, it's still one of the most ordered cocktails in the country.
It all started here
Mixologist Douglas Ankrah, behind iconic bars like LAB and Townhouse, came up with the stylish cocktail.
Ankrah describes the inspiration for the cocktail as a complete In preparation for opening his London bar, Townhouse, he had an eureka moment while working on his book, Shaken and Stirred. Ankrah wanted to make a drink that embodied his beliefs that bars should be bold, playful, and sexy.
was originally named the Maverick Martini after the Maverick's Gentleman Club, a frequent haunt of his when he was in Cape Town.
Upon returning to London, it was renamed Pornstar Martini. Alluring, confident and evocative, it got its name because Ankrah thought a pornstar would drink it. Names like that provoke reactions, and he got one.
The Pornstar Martini became an overnight sensation in 2002, and LAB and Townhouse became two of the biggest hotspots of the London cocktail revolution.
in 2021, 51.
What's in it
The Pornstar Martini is only a martini in name. You'll find vanilla-flavoured vodka, Passoa passion fruit liqueur, vanilla sugar, and passion fruit puree in this drink. For a unique presentation, it's garnished with half a passion fruit and served with Champagne.
The most surprising thing about the cocktail was how long it would reign. (And how much trouble its provocative name might cause. M&S had to rename their canned version, Passion Star Martini, in 2019!) Despite all that, it's now one of the UK's most popular drinks, and other brands are trying to follow suit. Whatever the name, Douglas Ankrah's match-made-in-heaven flavours live on, from Eden Mill's bottled Maverick Martini to BLOOM's Passionfruit and Vanilla Blossom Gin. But Ankrah himself didn’t seem surprised. He rightfully describes it as the ultimate party cocktail: fun, unpretentious, and never boring. He made the drink hassle-free in 2019 by bottling it for the ready-to-drink market, so we could enjoy his original recipe from home.
Here's how it's made
The Pornstar Martini has many versions, but we're sharing the original. You can make one of the UK's hottest cocktails at home with the recipe below.
25ml vodka (the original recipe calls for Grey Goose La Vanille)
25ml passion fruit puree
25ml apple juice
Half a passion fruit shell (or for a sustainable replacement, finish with our passion fruit
Pour the vodka, Passoã, passion fruit puree, apple juice and vanilla sugar into a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously with ice. Garnish with the passion fruit shell after straining into a chilled cocktail glass.
Enjoy with a shot of champagne!