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The Empress


The Empress

Another Mixology Events creation, The Empress is a refreshing spin on a classic Lychee Martini, upping the dry, floral nature of the classic by combining equal parts vodka, and elderflower liqueur with lychee and lime juice. The elderflower and lychee have a mildly sweet and floral taste that pair well with the clean, dry vodka and the sharp lime juice to make a resoundingly enjoyable cocktail

Vodka, Elderflower Liqueur, Lychee Juice, Lime Juice – Nick N Nora*

*premium glassware pictured, event glassware may differ.

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The Empress is a simple take on the Lychee Martini. The original combines vodka, lychee liqueur, lychee juice and lime juice, while the Empress simply replaces the lychee liqueur with elderflower, which has a similar flavour but a slightly more floral undertone.

This is a beautiful springtime cocktail. Whilst it features some primarily sweet ingredients, the dry vodka and tangy lime help to balance them out to make a cocktail that’s moreish and easy to drink. The Empress is a spin on the Martini, one of the most traditional cocktails with more variations than any other drink. Most of these iterations are a far cry from the original, with only the glass and the base spirit of vodka or gin in common, and they comprise such a varied range of drinks you could design a whole menu based on Martini-style cocktails.

Some other firm favourites from the Martini family include the Espresso Martini; a notorious mixture of vodka, coffee liqueur and espresso, the Pornstar Martini; the hen-do hero made up of vodka, passion fruit liqueur and juice, vanilla syrup and a mildly unnecessary shot of prosecco on the side, and the French Martini: a sweet and fruity mixture of raspberry vodka, pineapple juice and raspberry liqueur.

For the serious drinkers among your guests, you might want to include a classic Martini too. This infamously strong drink is made simply by stirring gin or vodka with a very small amount of dry vermouth, and serving ice cold with either a lemon twist, an olive, or a cocktail onion. Even the original Martini has a plethora of variations in how it’s made or served, it can be wet, dry, naked, dirty and a host of other innuendo-y adjectives. Martinis are strong, dry, and certainly not for everyone, but by offering some of the fruitier versions of this cocktail you can be sure to appeal to all your guests.

For those who prefer a longer, lighter cocktail, The Empress can also become The Empress Fizz, this is the same drink, simply served long, and topped with soda.

If you’re interested in serving The Empress as part of your cocktail selection, and want to know more about what drinks could sit well alongside it, be sure to speak to your event organiser about your options, or check out some other vodka-based, short and Martini-style cocktails from our list.


This is another cocktail created by our head bartender, events manager and resident cocktail chemist, Jake Rogers, this simple but elegant mixture of vodka, floral elderflower, lightly fruity lychee make a zingy and botanical sour and the addition of a dry sparkling wine transforms this cocktail into a classy welcome drink, ideal for summery events like weddings and garden parties.

Myths & Legends

There is a wealth of folklore surrounding the elder tree, which gives us elderflowers and elderberries. In some myths the elder tree is said to ward off evil and give protection from witches, while other beliefs say that witches often congregate beneath the plant, especially when it is full of fruit. If an elder tree was cut down, a spirit known as the elder mother would be released and take her revenge. The tree could only be safely cut while chanting a rhyme to the elder mother.


The telegraph posted an in-depth an informative article concerning the elder tree and its by-products in 2013 by writer, Mark Diacono entitled ‘In Praise of the Elderflower’

Made from a branch of the elder tree, the Elder Wand plays a pivotal role in J.K Rowling’s final Harry Potter novel, which she initially considered naming Harry Potter and The Elder Wand, before settling on Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows.

Ingredients & Equipment

With vodka it’s always worth using a classic premium brand from Russia or Poland like Stolichnaya or Wybyrowa to get the characteristic smoothness you expect.

In terms of elderflower liqueur there really is only one brand that most mixologists use: St. Germain,is a French elderflower liqueur with a naturally floral sweetness and a dry finish making it a fantastic ingredient for cocktails.


  • 25ml Vodka
  • 25ml Elderflower liqueur
  • 25ml Lime Juice
  • 25ml Lychee Juice
  • Tinned Lychee to Garnish


  • Shaker
  • Jigger/Measure
  • Hawthorne Strainer
  • Fine Strainer
  • Mexican Elbow
  • Martini Glass or Coupette
  • Cubed Ice
  • Chill your glass in the freezer or fill it with ice
  • Take your Boston glass or small tin
  • Using your jigger to measure, add the vodka, elderflower liqueur and lychee juice to the shaker
  • Using your Mexican elbow and a jigger, squeeze 25ml of lime juice and add it to the shaker
  • Fill your shaker with cubed ice and seal using your Boston tin or lid
  • Shake vigorously for 10-15 seconds or until your tin is very cold
  • Remove your glass from the freezer or empty it of ice if necessary
  • Using your Hawthorne strainer and your fine strainer double strain your cocktail into your chilled Martini glass or coupette
  • Garnish with a tinned lychee, dropped in the cocktail
  • Serve and enjoy!

For larger groups of six or more students, we offer the option to take things private. Our classes are fully portable, and we are able to set ourselves up efficiently and professionally in a wide variety of locations and settings across the capital, the UK, and beyond. You name the location, and we’ll endeavour to make it happen.

Give one of our dedicated event organisers a call on 020 8003 7982. They’ll happily talk you through your options, and answer any questions you may have about both our mobile and in-house cocktail making classes.