Unleash your inner spy by mastering the art of the iconic a Vesper, a signature cocktail famously savored by James Bond himself.
Ever daydreamed of chilling with a fancy cocktail, just like 007 himself? Well, it’s high time you brought that daydream to life with the classic Vesper – a total scene-stealing cocktail that’s got history in spades. The Vesper, also known as the “James Bond Cocktail,” (for good reason) is like a superstar trio of gin, vodka, and the fancy-smelling Lillet Blanc.
I’m a longtime member of the Bond Community (as it’s officially called), so naturally I was hosting a James Bond movie marathon and I was looking for a recipe for his classic shaken-not-stirred cocktail. And I found the Vesper. And it was an instant hit for our spy-themed 007 shindig. The Vesper comes with its own charisma — a mysterious player in the cocktails league — and, just like our man Bond, it left quite the impression.
Why You Will Love This Cocktail Recipe
- You might not be able to be a spy in real life but that doesn’t mean you can’t drink like one.
- It’s a classy drink for classy ladies (and gentlemen), I recommend the Vesper (and all the other martinis on my site) if you’re looking to make your drink game a bit more upscale.
- A cocktail shaker (though any large glass will do, as no shaking is required)
- A jigger (to measure liquids)
- A citrus squeezer (but you could squeeze it with your hands)
- A cocktail glass (martini glass or coupe preferred)
- 3 oz. gin
- 1 oz. vodka
- 0.5 oz. Lillet Blanc
- lemon twist for garnish
- Mix together the gin, vodka, and Lillet Blanc in a shaker.
- Add ice to the mixing glass and stir the cocktail for around 20 seconds, until it becomes well chilled.
- Pour through a strainer into a cold cocktail glass.
- Garnish with a lemon twist and serve immediately.
Top Tips For a Perfect Vesper
Choose Quality Spirits: The heart of the Vesper lies in its trio of alcoholic components – gin, vodka, and Lillet Blanc and I strongly recommend choosing top quality versions of each.
Stir, Don’t Shake: Despite James Bond’s famous line, “shaken, not stirred,” the Vesper is traditionally stirred (sorry, Bond). Now you may be wondering why? Stirring helps preserve the clarity of the cocktail and offers a silky mouthfeel, while shaking can introduce tiny air bubbles, making the drink cloudy.
Chill Your Glass: The Vesper is best served in a stylish martini glass and chilling it will help keep the cocktail at an optimum temperature for longer.
Use Fresh Citrus: Use a fresh lemon for the lemon-twist garnish to get a strong citrus aroma.
Correctly Measure Your Ingredients: Keep your jigger close at hand to ensure you’re pouring the correct amounts of gin, vodka, and Lillet Blanc.
The Vesper isn’t a diet drink. An average Vesper cocktail rings in at about 200 calories, so moderation is key (in fact, that is the rule with all alcoholic beverages!).
You can mix up a big batch and pop it in the fridge until it’s party time, good news if you like socializing! And if you have got some Vesper left overs, pour it into something you can seal tightly, like a jar or glass bottle, and stick it in the fridge for up to 5 days.
No problem! You can easily make a mocktail version of the Vesper. Just grab non-alcoholic gins and vodkas at your local store (I like Ritual). For the Lillet Blanc, my trick is to mix non-alcoholic white wine with a splash of orange juice.
Vesper Variations Worth Trying
The Skinny Vesper: Replace the gin and vodka with low-carb versions of each, and use a drier, low-carb white wine instead of the Lillet Blanc.
The Vesper Americano: Use Campari instead of vodka. It make for a more bitter drink, though, so be warned. Campari, by the way, is an Italian liqueur tasting of herbs and fruit.
The Reverse Vesper: The Reverse Vesper moves Lillet Blanc to the fore. It represents a majority of the cocktail and is joined by only a light touch of both gin and vodka.