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What is a Dirty Martini?

You probably know the martini from suave and sophisticated action heroes like James Bond. Even Eggsy in Kingsman does a great martini order “With gin of course. Stirred for 10 seconds while glancing at an unopened bottle of vermouth.” But what you may not realise is that there’s a big difference between a classic martini and a dirty martini; the brine.


Kingsman Eggsy Martini


What’s in a Dirty Martini?

A dirty martini doesn’t require much fancy equipment or hard to find ingredients. In fact, it’s the simplicity of the drink that draws in fans.


  • 50ml Gin
  • 10ml Dry Vermouth
  • 15ml Olive Brine
  • 3 Whole Green Olives
  • Ice Cubes


  1. Take all ingredients into a cocktail mixer and shake vigorously. 
  2. Strain and pour into a martini glass.
  3. Garnish with skewered green olives and serve.

Pretty simple right? The most complicated part of a dirty martini is finding the right recipe for you. Many people change up the proportions and experiment with different gins, different vermouths and different olives. In fact, a dirty martini can be made with vodka instead of gin for a different result.

There’s even variations in the mixing technique. Some argue that shaking will dilute your ingredients, but what’s wrong with that? Shaken or stirred, it’s about finding that briney goodness that works for you.

Why is it called a dirty martini?

The difference between a clean and a dirty martini is the brine. So other than a saucy way to refer to your drink, it’s referring to the cloudy appearance of the martini after you’ve added the brine.

What is the best olive brine for a dirty martini?

There are no wrong answers here - it’s about finding what you like! Different olives will produce a different brine giving you endless options to experiment with. Dirty martini drinkers face a common problem where they use the brine faster than the olives, letting the olives go bad. That’s why we’d suggest buying the olive brine by itself, or buying a dirty martini mix made with olive brine and perfected to give you maximum flavour!

Keen to get started? Check out our dirty martini olives, brine and flavourings!

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