There are three things to keep in mind when making lemon drop martinis at home. Fresh lemon juice is best, use a quality vodka, and serve the martini very cold. A few of our favorite mid-priced vodka brands are Kettle One, Stolichnaya (Stoli), and Tito’s. If you plan to make the lemon sugar, it is best to remove the zest from the lemon before juicing them for the martini. Then when you need to moisten the glass so that the sugar sticks, use the leftover lemon halves after juicing.
1/2 cup granulated sugar
Zest from 1 lemon
2 ounces (1/4 cup) quality vodka, try a citron vodka
3/4 ounce (1 1/2 tablespoons) Cointreau or triple sec
1 ounce (2 tablespoons) fresh squeezed lemon juice (Juice from 1/2 large lemon)
3/4 ounce (1 1/2 tablespoons) simple syrup, see our recipe for simple syrup
Lemon sugar, for glass rim
Add sugar to a plate then rub the zest into the sugar with your fingers until tinted yellow and fragrant.
Moisten the rim of a chilled martini glass with the juiced lemon, turn the glass upside down and twist into the lemon sugar, set aside.
Add vodka, Cointreau (or triple sec), lemon juice, simple syrup and a handful of ice to a cocktail shaker. Shake for 30 seconds or until very cold. Strain into the prepared martini glass and serve immediately.