Dukes London’s famed Martini

21 Apr 2020 | Updated on: 27 Sep 2022 |By Luxury London

DUKES London in St James's is where Ian Fleming famously drank dry Martinis, thus inspiring James Bond's signature drink

DUKES London’s unique take on the classic cocktail is renowned. The secret, according to head bartender Alessandro Palazzi, is in the execution. The DUKES Martini is prepared table-side on a Rosewood trolley – either shaken nor stirred, but free-poured.

Palazzi also recommends that the Martini glass and the gin must both be kept in the freezer overnight so the Martini is perfectly chilled in order to avoid using ice, which dilutes the taste. His advice is to keep a couple of glasses in the freezer so that, after 20 minutes of serving, any remaining cocktail can be poured into the second, frozen, glass, to maintain its optimum chilly temperature. The zest of organic Amalfi lemons is used for preference, but in these times of make-do-and-mend, whatever citrus fruit (or liquor brands) you have to hand will do. The DUKES Martini is best paired with Sicilian olives, which have a natural meaty flavour, and a selection of non-spiced nuts.


(makes one)

1 frozen martini glass100ml frozen No. 3 Gin5ml Sacred Dry vermouth1 twist of organic Amalfi lemon peel


  1. Drop 5ml of Sacred Dry Vermouth into the frozen glass

  2. Top the glass up with 100 ml of the frozen No.3 Gin

  3. Finish off with a large twist of zest of organic lemon from the Amalfi coast, squeeze the lemon zest to extract the fragrant oils which makes the DUKES Martini unique

  4. Finally, gently swirl the lemon zest and drop it into the glass and enjoy your DUKES Martini

Read more: why Dukes London is a St James’s institution

35 St James’s Pl, St. James’s, London SW1A 1NY, dukeshotel.com/dukes-bar