The martini is a forever-classic cocktail. And what makes it interesting is that there are so many iterations (espresso, very very dirty, Texas-forever Mexican). But one of the most fun versions is something you don’t often see on menus in Austin: the Pornstar martini.
Inherently, the scandalous-seeming name is intriguing. The late Ghanaian-born, British bartender Douglas Ankrah developed the drink at London bar Townhouse in 2003. He decided on the name Pornstar martini because “the drink looked like a cocktail a porn star would drink.” The cocktail is typically made of vanilla vodka; passion fruit liqueur; and puree, vanilla, and lime. It’s shaken with ice and then strained into a glass, served with a shot of bubbles.
For people seeking out Pornstar martinis in Austin, head to East Austin casual vegan restaurant and bar Sunny’s Backyard. This version is slightly different from the classic recipe. It makes use of plain vodka, adds vanilla flavoring through vanilla liqueur, swaps lime for lemon, and brightens it up a touch with pineapple.
Newer downtown bar Saturn also serves up a fantastic version of the Pornstar martini, befitting its whole goal of embracing playful “disco day-glo” vibes. It adds its own spin through the Mom & Dad cocktail, developed by owner Steven Smith. He swaps vanilla vodka for a citrus one and passion fruit flavors for a pink guava liqueur, plus vanilla bean simple syrup. The result is punchy.
There’s a good reason Pornstar martinis became immediately popular in the United Kingdom, and appears to be catching on in America. It’s an enjoyably sweet and an easy-to-drink beverage, and sometimes, you just need a little fun to shake things up.