What are we drinking? Martinis! This retro drink is fancy, yes, but not intimidatingly so. In fact, it’s one of the easiest things to serve at a holiday party, especially if you make a batch ahead of time. To celebrate Alison Roman’s new cookbook, Nothing Fancy: Unfussy Food for Having People Over, we hosted a party with a fun martini bar inspired by her laid-back hosting philosophy (and love of martinis) at the West Elm Holiday House with StreetEasy. (Tour the full space here!)

Get everything you need below – cheers!

Photography by Landon Vonderschmidt

Here’s what you’ll need:
– Gin or vodka
– Dry vermouth
– Ice (it’s not traditional, but it’ll keep everything diluted and cold, which is what you want)
– Lots of olives (plus brine, for dirty martinis)
– Pearl onions (to make it a Gibson)
– Lemon peels (for people who want theirs “with a twist”)

No bar cart? No problem. Free free to use another surface, like the Terrace Pill Console. You can keep it where it usually lives against a wall, or float it at a focal point in your home so you can serve your guests bartender-style. You can set out your garnishes in individual Marble + Copper Dip Bowls so guests can help themselves.

Shaking martinis for individual guests will be a pain, so save your forearms and do everyone’s “stirred,” not “shaken,” in a large pitcher. Check out Nothing Fancy for Alison’s go-to big batch martini recipe! If you’d rather go individual, the regular ratio to keep in mind is 2 ½ oz gin or vodka to ½ oz dry vermouth.

Watch next: How to Make a Martini

Martini glasses are obviously a classic, but there are no real rules here! Odds are you don’t have enough for all of your guests, so you can use other glasses you like, such as the faceted Cassiopea Glassware Set. If you can keep them chilled before serving, even better.

Photography by Landon Vonderschmidt

Follow @westelm for more!

More holiday entertaining:
How to Set the Table for an Unfussy Holiday Dinner Party
Alison Roman Recipes: Low & Slow Rib Roast and Sticky Roasted Carrots
3 More Holiday Cocktail Recipes from Apartment Bartender
Tour the West Elm Holiday House with StreetEasy!

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