The Unexpected Cheesy Addition To Amplify Your Espresso Martini

If you think that cheese has no place near any cocktail, keep an open mind. The addition of cheese to an espresso martini recipe has become embraced by cocktail lovers and connoisseurs, as the combination of sweet and savory flavors delivers an easy-to-sip adult beverage that tastes as luxurious as it appears.

Since espresso martinis were first created to keep party-goers awake, the caffeinated recipe has seen plenty of variations. From experimenting with the spirits used to make the drink to adding ice cream to the cocktail, this coffee-colored beverage shows no sign of slowing down. Though the unusual cheese and coffee presentation first went viral on TikTok, topping a martini made up of coffee liqueur, vodka, and espresso with grated parmesan isn't as disastrous as it might first seem. Parmesan cheese brings an umami element to espresso cocktails and helps build a deliciously textured drink that is surprisingly easy to put back. When sipped slowly, this cheese-garnished cocktail carries elements that mirror cream cheese-slathered bagels served with coffee or the Scandinavian treat that is served with pieces of cheese floating in the coffee cup.

A tried and true flavor combination

To try the cheesy cocktail for yourself at home, shake your chosen ingredients for your espresso martini with ice, then strain the drink into a chilled glass. Top the drink with grated parmesan, and for an additional sweet touch, add shavings of chocolate for a particularly decadent drink. 


I mean, you just have to try it 🧀 #cocktail #espressomartini #bartender #mixology

♬ Quirky Bossa – Kenny Moggio

One of the original proponents of the drink suggests using aged parmesan cheese. Though you may be tempted to use a knife to chop off pieces of cheese onto your drink, take extra time to shave finer pieces over your glass with a Microplane. The idea is to deliver flavor, not mimic a gooey serving of macaroni and cheese. When you're able to nail the perfect proportion of ingredients, the bitterness of the espresso will be balanced by the savory, salty presence of the cheese. Espresso martinis garnished with parmesan are much more than a social media fad; this flavor duo has proven staying power.