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How to Throw a Martini Party with a Twist of Fun and Style

Everyone is drinking martinis, thinking martinis & partying martini style in a big way. Hop on the band wagon and treat your guests to a party they'll never forget!

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Martinis bring to mind another era of style and sophistication, martinis have a dash of mystery and a twist of elegance.  Keep that in mind when you plan your party but don't throw out the idea of a Martini Beach Party or a White Trash Martini Party - just do them with style!


Parties are always more fun with a theme and, of course, the most popular martini party theme is James Bond. . . but I say take it one step further:
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  • Have everyone come as their favorite TV or movie spy
  • Play theme music from all the great spy shows like Man from U.N.C.L.E., Mission Impossible (and of course, Johnny River's Secret Agent Man)
  • Give everyone an eye patch when they walk in and a plastic squirt gun and fill them with their martini of choice!
  • Have everyone dip into a bowl to see if they will be a good spy, a villain or a double agent and create a fun spy scenario.
  • Hide secret messages around the room with clues to a prize.
  • Put up spy movie posters.
  • Put dry ice around the buffet table for a smoky effect.
  • Print out some bullet holes and paste them on the walls and furniture.
Want to Change Things Up? Why Not EAT YOUR COCKTAILS?
The possibilities are endless!

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  • Vintage Hollywood - Go with my Oscar Martinis!
  • Day at the Beach - Try my Tropical Martinis!
  • Sex and the City Marathon - The SATC Martinis, of course!
  • A Divorce Party - My Divorce Martini works here
  • Birthday Parties - Serve up my Birthday Martini (made from Skittles Infused Vodka) and serve birthday cupcakes in a martini glass!
  • I also have a series of PINK MARTINIS perfect for a PINK PARTY or a breast cancer event!.
  • How about an Animal House style Frat Party - serve my Cocktail Gels - aka (upscale) jello shots!
  • How about a Retro Sixties Party? Tie Dye everything and serve my Hippie Happy Hour Martinis!
  • There are even Cocktail - Martini Board and Party Games available. Check out the ones below from Amazon - and how cute would it be if your whole guest list was wearing the Martini Sunglasses?:
COCKTAILS BY MAIL - My Martini Recipe Cards on Mailable Postcards!

For martini party flair check out some of my fun Garnishing and Rimming ideas.


  • GOOD GUESTS. Think of the people and how they will mix. Don't invite the emotional vampires or party poopers and if you do give them a job to do! You don't have to invite everyone you know but a good mix of people and backgrounds makes an interesting party.
  • SOMEONE AT THE DOOR to greet your guests, take their coats, get them their first drink and introduce them. Remember how difficult it is to walk into a room of strangers and do your best to make your guests immediately comfortable and welcome.
  • A STOCKED BAR AND SOMEONE TO TEND IT. Okay, this is a martini party so pick several martinis and get the ingredients for those.
    - For each guest invited you assume they will consume 2.5 drinks each but have a little extra just in case (you can always use it later for yourself!)
    - You'll need as many clean glasses as well - do not top off a used martini glass, it's tacky and martinis are not tacky!
  • SEVERAL COCKTAIL SHAKERS. If you don't have a wet bar to rinse them out them have at least 2 shakers per martini recipe.
  • PARTY ICE - lots of Ice, nicely filtered and fresh.
  • MARTINI PICKS - one for each martini glass.
  • COCKTAIL NAPKINS - trust me, get 5 per guest.
  • APPETIZER PLATES (for the finger food below) if glass or china 2 per guest, if paper figure on 3 per guest.
  • TRASH BAGS. Grab one every hour and clean up litter then sit it out of the way.
  • GOOD FINGER FOOD. Think anything that can be eaten in 2 or less bites, that isn't messy or hard to eat. Consider the martinis you will be serving and try to match your appetizers to complement them. Ham and cheeses go great with Apple Martinis, Nachos go great with spicy and savory martinis, etcetera.
    - Check out my COCKTAIL - MARTINI APPETIZERS PAGE for some great "Tiny Foods" to go with your martinis - I even have some recipes to match my Theme Martinis!.
  • GREAT MUSIC THAT MATCHES YOUR THEME OR PARTY MOOD. Keep it under the sonic boom level by having several speakers throughout the party area. Enough speakers mean you can keep the sound level down and your guests can still enjoy the tunes. Here's some great cocktail music from Amazon: Dirty Martini
  • DECORATIONS & INVITATIONS TO MATCH YOUR THEME. Think of the mood you want to create and plan your lighting with dimmers, candles and spot lights. Get creative with your buffet table and get some cute serving dishes that enhance your theme. If you can afford it, or finagle it, get some props - like old film reels or old movie cameras for vintage Hollywood - anything that brings your theme to life. Party stores sometimes have fun stuff but stay away from the cheezy paper decorations and hit up garage sales, rummage sales and thrift shops for little theme gems ahead of time! Got a friend who's an artist? Enlist them to help you get creative!
    And check out The Martini Diva Boutique for t-shirts, caps, shoes, aprons, invitations, postage, banners & other gifts to help you create a coordinated theme!
  • SCENTED CANDLES OR ROOM FRESHENERS - but not near the food. It's really nice to walk into a pleasant smelling room but make sure it's a fragrance that is compatible with the lovely smell of delicious appetizers you're going to serve and keep candles by the food unscented.
  • PLACES TO SIT. A good rule of thumb is one "chair" for every 2 guests. Try to organize small seating areas where people can gather in more intimate groupings as they choose but try to have a good "flow" to the walk area - and around the bar and buffet table!
  • A SMOKING AREA away from the main party. People still smoke and not giving those guests a convenient and comfortable location is rude. Keeping it away from the main party makes it comfortable for those who do not smoke.
  • A PARKING SOLUTION. You can hire a valet, you can rent a lot nearby and have friends shuttled. Be aware that parties mean extra cars in your neighborhood and plan accordingly.
  • INVITE YOUR NEIGHBORS or at least warn them ahead of time. If you don't want to invite them bring them a nice gift basket with an explanation, "I'm having a small business party . . . . ."
  • A DESIGNATED DRIVER or a way to house those few guests who might have enjoyed too many of your martinis.
  • A WELL STATED START AND END TIME. Send out real invitations (check some of my fully customizable martini party invitations out here), State the start and end of your party - unless you want people moving in permanently.

COCKTAILS BY MAIL - My Martini Recipe Cards on Mailable Postcards!

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I've had many of you ask me how you can make enough martinis for a large group or a party. Making multiple drinks at once is called batching and it's the easiest way to prepare for a cocktail party. Making my Designer Martinis is a little more than tossing some alcohol and mixer in a glass or pitcher but you can batch most martini recipes just like any other cocktail with a little bit of planning!


My Designer Martinis are a unique breed of cocktail - half the fun comes in the use of the shaker, martini or cocktail pick and, most importantly, the martini glass. Be prepared and have several martini shakers and martini picks on hand and enough martini glasses for your guests. Also have a good supply of ice cubes (not crushed ice!)

Presentation and fun is as much a part of a martini as the ingredients. Without the proper glass, rimming, garnishes and flair of the shaker it's just another boring cocktail! Plan ahead - get your theme in place and gather together some fun props and ideas for party martinis with flair.

Read the Great Party Tips Above for bar stocking tips - these will help you with your martini batching process!

If you don't have the cash or courage to use multiple shakers and martini glasses then go ahead and use plastic glasses and pour your drink out of a pitcher BUT call it a cocktail party - it's not a Martini party anymore!

Yes, you can still use my martini recipes, after all a martini is a cocktail too! Remember, Martinis are the Happy Hour symbol of style and elegance - take that away and it's not a Martini anymore!

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Many of my martini recipes call for special touches like a rimmed glass, unique garnishes and special ingredients which can also be "batched" - or prepped - ahead of time. If you have everything already sliced and diced, rimmed and ready, then you'll be the host or hostess with the mostest - organized, calm, cool and very much the martini master!

INGREDIENTS: Obviously you want to make sure you have enough of the ingredients on hand. Check the recipes and assume two and a half drinks per guest then take the time to multiply the recipe ingredients for this amount. If my recipe states "parts" as opposed to ounces simply count each "part" as an ounce. It's always wise to have more of each ingredient on hand than you need, sometimes extra guests show up, sometimes spillage occurs and sometimes people just drink more than one or two cocktails. I also recommend that you have a non-alcoholic version of the martini recipe available.
Here are some tips for making non-alcoholic martinis.

GARNISHES: If your recipe calls for fruit, olives or veggie garnishes then prep (pre-slice, freeze, etc) enough for at least 2 to 3 cocktails per person, place these in a nice bowl or container and keep refrigerated. Other garnishes like candy, etcetera can be put in another container and covered but not refrigerated. You can then spear the garnish, attach it to the rim or drop it in at the time you serve the martini.

RIMMING: If the martini recipe you choose calls for rimming the glass then do this ahead of time if you want. Simply line up all your glasses and follow my martini rimming instructions using the recipe's rimming suggestion. Then either place all the glasses in your freezer (wow, you must have a big freezer!), or chill each glass at the "bar" as you serve them using the directions below. (Yes, you can rim a plastic glass but the plastic rims are often too thin or thicker than glass and you'll find they don't rim as well.)
HOW TO RIM A MARTINI GLASS with Fun Rimming Ideas.

If your recipe calls for a rimmed glass it's always easier to rim the glass first but you can quickly chill all martini glasses by placing them in the freezer until it's time to pour the martini and serve. If you have a small freezer area, you can chill a few at a time in the freezer and rotate as you use them. If you can't do this you can use the bartender trick of chilling your glass with ice cubes. Keep in mind that at a party you will have already pre-mixed your main martini ingredients and prepped garnishes so this method doesn't effectively chill the glass unless you line up several glasses and fill them with ice a few minutes ahead of time, then set them aside until you need them.

If your glass has been rimmed ahead of time you have to be a bit more careful with this method so the ice won't wet or damage your rimmer. Have your fresh ice nearby in an ice bucket and, if you don't have a wet bar with a sink, have an empty container to toss the used ice into when you're ready to pour the martini. Please don't reuse this ice in your shaker - tacky, tacky, tacky!


For martinis that don't use cream, milk or half & half in their recipes you can simply multiply the single martini recipe by 2 to 2.5 times the number of guests you will be having. Pour this into large GLASS pitchers, cover and refrigerate. Then when you're ready to start making martinis put your pitcher on your bar area in a bucket/bowl of ice to keep it chilled. When your guest comes up for a martini, pour about 1/2 - 2/3 cup (depending on the size of your martini glasses) into a chilled martini shaker with your nice, filtered ice cubes and shake until the shaker frosts over, then pour into your chilled martini glass, garnish and serve!

If your recipe does have cream or milk in it then you will have to measure this per drink. Sorry, but dairy products and alcohol just don't batch well. Be sure to keep your milk or cream chilled - place it in a glass pitcher and in a bucket/bowl of ice. You can mix up your other ingredients in a batch, calculate their portion of the martini to the cream then add the cream's portion to the shaker along with your batched mix and proceed to shake, garnish and serve.

Some of my favorite martini recipes call for "muddling" certain ingredients in the shaker before adding the alcohol and mixers. Muddling is simply a process of smashing certain elements of your martini together - usually an herb leaf or fruit, sugar and/or lemon or lime. You can batch this too! Again, you have to multiply the ingredients for your guest numbers. Then I suggest you figure out how much these elements constitute in proportion to one martini - it's usually in teaspoon to tablespoon ranges. You can then pre-muddle (is that a word?) these ingredients, keep them chilled (glass bowl in ice) and then measure this into the martini shaker before the ice, shake quickly, add your other martini elements then shake again until your martini is chilled. Here's a great muddling tool from Amazon to help you out: Cocktail Bar BAMBOO MUDDLER with Rounded Handle


You're now organized and Martini-ized and ready to enjoy your own Designer Martini Party. You can choose two or three different of my martini recipes if you'd like. To make it fun you could decorate 2 or 3 separate areas of your bar to match each martini flavor! Toss some chocolate chips or chocolate sprinkles on top of a chocolate brown scarf and set your shakers, glasses & ingredients around in matching containers. Lemon and yellow for Lemon Drop Martinis, grape tomatoes and red for tomato based martinis, etcetera. Print out my martini recipe card for each martini you serve and set it up in that area - heck, print up a pile of them and use them as invitations for the party! Have a little fun with it - that's what my Designer Martinis are all about!

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