Best Gin For Martini

Posted by The Bottle Haus
Fri, Dec 17, 21

As cocktail culture evolves, the delineation between what a classic cocktail is and what’s new is starting to grow fuzzier. The Martini has been a part of American culture since its creation in the 1800s, but how we drink it has definitely evolved over time.

The Martini, the pinnacle of classic cocktails, is all about the gin. And what makes a great Martini (or any mixed drink for that matter) isn’t about using a $200 bottle of gin; it’s about using gin that tastes good to you.

What’s in a Martini?

With such a classic and iconic drink as this, the perfect Martini has a few widely agreed upon traits. It must be served in an appropriately shaped glass, preferably with a heavy base to hold the drink cold for as long as possible. It should have plenty of vermouths, reaching a balance between dryness and saturation. Finally, it must be stirred with ice until the temperature reaches zero, so it’s nice and cold.

Honestly, making a martini is as simple as mixing your favorite gin with dry vermouth. But you can add variations to the classic drink by adding vodka, shaken or stirred, and using different garnishes. There are so many possibilities, and that’s what makes it exciting. We can’t tell you which of these methods are correct; only you can answer that. This is your beverage, after all.

Best Gin For Martini

To help you get through all the choices available, we reached out to some top bartenders and beverage directors to find out what types of gin they recommend for the perfect Martini.

Beefeater London Dry Gin

If you are a martini-loving kind of person, you’re probably familiar with Beefeater London Dry. Famous for being the gin in James Bond’s martinis, this classic London dry gin is perhaps best known for truly living up to its name -- it has that signature juniper bite that is often lacking from many of today’s newer gins. The bottle itself may not be much to look at, but rest assured, if you like your martinis shaken or stirred, there is a reason this gin is called a classic.

Roku Japanese Gin

The first thing you’ll notice about Roku Japanese Gin is its visual appeal. But upon closer inspection, it’s what you don’t see that makes it so distinctive. Sakura leaf, Sencha tea, and Gyokuro tea expertly replace the juniper berry, a baseline component in any gin, offering a more rounded experience in the glass. The lemon-colored liquid opens with a fresh cut green grass aroma with a hint of citrus and honeydew melon. Then you sense white pepper and subtle spices—just enough to intrigue the palate without overpowering the other botanicals. The botanicals in this gin make for a Martini that’s light, zesty, and floral. Serve with a twist of lemon peel.

Plymouth Original Gin

Plymouth Original Gin is ideal for the serious gin drinker ready to move beyond their London Dry Martini. It's bold and savory, with bright citrus notes and just a touch of earthy sweetness. Plymouth's fruit-forward character and classic cocktail composition set it apart from London Dry gins. Due to this, you'll find it works exceptionally well with aged dry vermouths in a Martini and is especially good for Old-Fashioneds. The herbal and citrus-forward character also makes an excellent counterpoint in most long drinks.

The Botanist Islay Dry Gin

Concoct a Martini that transports you to the remote island of Islay and delivers a moment of zen. The Botanist explores Islay’s botanical heritage, touted as a progressive distillation feat. Containing the traditional botanicals of a London Dry, this gin from the Bruichladdich distillery also showcases 22 hand-foraged ingredients from the Isle of Islay. Like an island breeze, the zesty botanicals in the gin whisk you off to the relaxing island of Islay.

Tanqueray No. Ten Gin 

It's simple; if you drink a Martini, this is the gin to use. Not only do you get the classic Tanqueray taste with its trademark juniper, but you also get layers of floral notes, which make this an exceptional choice in one of our favorite cocktails. While it lacks the intensity of some premium gins on the market, it more than makes up for this with its subtle complexity and easy-drinking nature. The name comes from the size of the still used to produce it — a mere 10 gallons. Yet its flavor is anything but small. This "melange" of ten botanicals gives it a distinct character, like a warm embrace in midwinter. No. Ten takes Martini drinkers to ambrosia and makes solid day-drinking into a sport.

Bombay Dry Gin

Bold, unique, and utterly delicious. The key to any great martini is balance. Cucumber-forward Bombay Dry Gin throws down a clean, crisp finish with an earthy undertone of fragrant orris root and lemon peel. It’s a luxurious, light-bodied gin with a creamy texture that features classic elements of the style interwoven into a new and refreshing experience. This complex pour creates a citrusy experience by including sweet orange peel and hints of lemongrass and grains of paradise in the nose and elevates the classic dry martini to new heights. While a martini should be sophisticated and enjoyable to make and drink, Bombay Dry is a delicate gin specifically designed to create a superior Martini.

Bombay Sapphire East Gin

Bombay Sapphire East Gin is a masterpiece of British gin making that's distinctively different from your typical London Dry. By utilizing an advanced distillation process and select, rare ingredients from around the world, Bombay Sapphire East crafts a wholly unique, utterly delicious martini-making spirit that elevates any martini to art. This one's for those who aren't afraid to let their inner artist free – Bombay Sapphire East allows you to get more experimental with your martini creation. This can be debilitating, so we highly recommend using it in a 50/50 style martini (no vermouth, just gin, and juice) to experience just this taste profile.

Hendrick's Gin

The bottle’s unusual style is just the beginning. The contents are even more interesting. Hendrick’s has a pretty distinctive taste – this isn’t just any old gin you’re swishing around your mouth. While it has strong notes of juniper, there’s also a sweet and musky hint of rose that lightens it as well as sweet orange, lime zest and a touch of elderflower. It has a very complex palate, with notes of angelica, coriander, juniper, and orris root accord, as well as zesty citrus mid-palate and a subtle candy-like sweetness. In the late palate, there’s a definite hint of black pepper. Hendrick’s is a really complex gin. It’s a delight to drink neat and makes an exciting martini.

Aviation American Gin

Try the more mellow Aviation American Gin, distilled for a more balanced flavor if you love gin but find it a bit too much to bear. Aviation Gin was one of the most impressive entrants into the contemporary gin explosion that we remember. The nose on each of their expressions shows beautiful balance, a richness that’s never-too-cloying and always inviting. Consider this gin a gateway to the contemporary style. While Aviation Gin is undoubtedly not the boldest gin out there, it’s one of the more well balanced gins in the crowd and one that you have to try if you haven’t already.

Empress 1908 Original Indigo Gin

Introducing Empress 1908 Indigo Gin, a unique, almost electric shade of blue that doesn’t look like your typical spirit.  It looks like something the Romulans would drink in an episode of Star Trek — that’s how blue this gin is. It isn’t just a blue hue either. It’s bright, almost electric, and we don’t think we’re overstating things when we say it’s truly one of the bluest spirits on planet earth. This vibrant Gin is infused with the signature Fairmont Empress Blend Tea, along with rose petals and butterfly pea blossoms. It brings some interesting color-changing effects to all of your favorite Gin cocktails. It packs botanicals like juniper, coriander seed, cinnamon, ginger, and grapefruit peel and some interesting ones like rose petals and orange blossom. This smooth Gin is perfect for those who want to keep things interesting.


So, which gin is best for a Martini? The answer depends on your preferences. But there’s no shortage of choice of great gins – many of them award-winners – to make a classic cocktail. The ones on this list, though, are something special. There are fan favorites, new world flavors, and new takes on classic gin.

Either way, we hope that our guide has provided some helpful information on the subject and will lead you to a newfound appreciation of your favorite martini.


You're likely familiar with the diversity found in martinis. There are endless possibilities for your own homemade recipes, as every ingredient and technique has many possible combinations. Your own taste preferences will dictate what you think is best, but we’ve provided here a general idea of how to make the perfect martini.

With this recipe as a base, you'll be able to experiment and find out what works best for you. And if it needs another round, you know where to go.


  • 2 1/2 ounces gin or vodka
  • 1/2 ounce dry vermouth
  • Ice
  • Lemon peel twist or olives for garnish


  • Mixing glass or cocktail shaker
  • Hawthorne strainer
  • Fine-mesh strainer (for shaken)
  • Bar spoon
  • Jigger or small liquid measuring glass
  • Martini glass
  • Pairing knife or Y-Peeler

For Stirred Martini

  1. Place your Martini glass in the fridge to chill before making your cocktail.
  2. In a mixing glass, combine the gin with the dry vermouth.
  3. Add ice cubes and stir for 30 seconds until the Martini is cold enough, then strain into the chilled Martini glass.
  4. For garnish, pare a lemon peel, then pinch the back of the lemon peel to express and spread it over the martini. Finally, rub the lemon peel over the rim of the glass and drop it in. 

*Speared olives can also be used as a garnish.

For Shaken Martini

  1. Place your Martini glass in the fridge to chill before making your cocktail.
  2. In a cocktail shaker, combine the gin or vodka with dry vermouth.
  3. Toss in ice cubes and shake hard for 10 seconds.
  4. Strain the Martini into your cold Martini glass if you want ice shards floating on top of your drink. If you don't want ice shards in your drink, use a fine mesh filter to remove them.
  5. For garnish, pare a lemon peel, and express the back of the lemon peel over the Martini. Rub the lemon peel along the rim of the glass, then drop it in.

*Speared olives can also be used as a garnish.

To achieve a harmonious balance of flavors in a Martini, avoid overdoing it. Adding too much gin or olives may ruin the entire cocktail, so finding the right amount is key. Getting the correct balance in a Martini gives it its unique flavor and personality.