You can’t go wrong with ordering a classic Martini. It’s a bold, no-nonsense cocktail that can be made with a variety of different spirits, modifiers and garnishes to suit even the pickiest palate. But if you’re new to the Martini, its robust flavor can be tough to get used to at first. So we’ve been on a serious quest to find the most drinkable Martinis in New York City that both veteran drinkers and newbies will love. These 10 variations are made with interesting spirits, flavorful infusions and an array of tasty garnishes to make them almost too easy to drink.
Double Dirty Martini at Primo’s
Tucked inside TriBeCa’s Frederick Hotel, Primo’s is one of those relaxed New York City spots that feels like a hidden gem. All of their house Martinis are served as doubles, so bring a friend to indulge in cocktail hour if you can (don’t worry, they can make a single serving, too). The Double Dirty Martini is perfect if you have a salty tooth, as it’s made with Skyy Vodka, olive brine, white anchovy and piquillo pepper.
Gibson at Dear Irving on Hudson
Perched on the 40th and 41st floors of Midtown’s Aliz Hotel (one of Travel + Leisure's top 15 hotels in New York City), Dear Irving on Hudson is outfitted with floor-to-ceiling windows, rich upholstery and glittering crystal curtains. It’s probably the most elegant place in the city to drink a Martini, especially if you’re a fan of the classic Gibson. Theirs is made with Tanqueray 10, Carpano Bianco vermouth and a purple pickled onion garnish that perfectly matches the velvet couches.
The Loyal Martini at The Loyal
The Loyal is a perfect place to grab a cocktail and a bite, whether you’re casually stopping in after work or celebrating a special occasion. It’s also an excellent place for a Martini if you’re in need of a snack. Whether you choose gin or vodka, each Martini comes with the best sidecar you can imagine. Not only do they bring you a small carafe of extra cocktail on ice, but skewers filled with olives, pickles, a cocktail onion, cheese and charcuterie arrive with the drink.
Salted Apricot at The Turk’s Inn
Situated on a bustling block in Brooklyn’s Bushwick neighborhood, The Turk’s Inn pays homage to a Midwestern supper club of the same name that served Hayward, Wisconsin for eight decades. They have a Martini to satisfy every mood, but our favorite is the easy drinking Salted Apricot. A mix of Black Infusions Apricot Vodka, apricot eau-de-vie and salt is beautifully fruity without being sweet, perfect if you’re new to the Martini game.
Zen Garden Martini at Shun
Helmed by Michelin-starred chef Alain Verzeroli, Shun serves a beautiful contemporary French tasting menu with Japanese influences. Whether you decide to dine at the restaurant or simply grab a cocktail at Bar Shun, the move here is the Zen Garden Martini. Mixed with Suntory Roku Gin and sake that’s infused with nori and cilantro, its umami-packed flavor will whet your appetite for whatever comes next.
Reverse Vesper at The Stayton Room
The Stayton Room just opened in Midtown’s Lexington Hotel, and is classy New York cocktailing at its finest. Frank Caiafa — formerly of The Waldorf Astoria and author of "The Waldorf Astoria Bar Book" — is at the helm of the cocktail program, and he makes one mean Martini. Vodka lovers should order the Reverse Vesper, which features the spirit along with gin and Cocchi Americano Bianco for an incredibly refreshing Martini.
Martini at Sauvage
Whether you prefer to imbibe at the bar or watch the world go by from a seat on the patio, Sauvage brings all of the relaxed European vibes to Brooklyn’s Greenpoint neighborhood. Their house Martini is made with Xoriguer de Mahon — a Spanish gin from Menorca — and Mauro Vergano Luli, a unique Moscato-based white Chinato. The accompanying sidecar, which is stocked with a juniper sprig, watermelon radish, caperberry, lemon twist and nasturtium, lets you customize the drink to your liking.
Vesper at The Bar Room at Temple Court
The Bar Room at Temple Court inside the Financial District’s Beekman Hotel is always filled with an energetic crowd, sipping on libations underneath the nine-story Victorian era atrium. While the staff can likely make you any type of Martini you desire, we’re especially fond of the citrusy, floral Vesper. The mix of Stoli Vodka, Hendrick’s Gin and Italicus Bergamotto makes for an easy-to-sip Martini you’ll want to order twice.
Pretty Boy Floyd at Library of Distilled Spirits
You’ll be impressed by a collection of more than 1,000 bottles at Library of Distilled Spirits, no matter if you’re a cocktail geek or just someone who loves to imbibe. After taking in the bar’s display of rare spirits, settle onto a banquette and order the Pretty Boy Floyd. Makrut lime and honeydew-infused Hendrick’s Gin provide a fruit-forward flavor while Cocchi Americano and fino sherry give it that Martini kick.
Martini at Undercote
Cote is a perfect marriage of Korean barbecue and American steakhouse, serving some of the most succulent beef you’ll ever taste. While the upstairs bar is lovely, you can find us at the restaurant’s subterranean drinking den, Undercote. If you’re a no-nonsense Martini drinker who doesn’t have time for the newfangled iterations, then Sondre Kasin’s flawless, ice-cold mix of Tanqueray, Noilly Prat Dry Vermouth and orange bitters should do the trick.