This is the UK's first mushroom espresso martini - but what are the benefits of drinking adaptogens?

It's a 'funghi' life for us

mushroom espresso martini london adaptogen
Giles Christopher

If you have a soft spot for an espresso martini but wished they were a little healthier - then you're in luck.

A London cocktail bar is launching the UK's first mushroom espresso martini, meaning as well as sipping that velvety vodka-based drink you'll be reaping in the health benefits too.

The new cocktail, available from 5th September at London cocktail bar The Folly, is made up of Ketel One vodka, Fair Café liqueur, and London Nootropic's Flow coffee - which adds the adaptogenic qualities.

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Mushroom coffee blends are known to help with motivation, mental clarity and focus, and this version includes a blend of natural ingredients such as lions mane mushroom and rhodiola rosea extracts.

In fact, many brands and celebrities are waking up to the benefits of swapping normal coffee for mushroom coffee. Meghan Markle invested in US brand Clevr blends a couple of years ago - and their best-selling product is a super latte coffee blend, which includes adaptogenic mushrooms. Oprah is said to be a fan too - after good friend, Meghan sent her a bundle to try.

Goop owner Gwyneth Paltrow and supermodel Elle Macpherson love the mushroom blends too - adding them to coffee, tea and juices.

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What are the benefits of drinking adaptogenic mushrooms?

Clarissa Berry, a nutritionist for DIRTEA, which range also includes a mushroom coffee super blend, explains that mushrooms, with therapeutic properties, have been used in traditional medicine for thousands of years.

'Mushrooms like Chaga, Reishi, Lion’s Mane and Cordyceps are packed with beneficial molecules that help increase resilience to stress, offer antioxidant protection, enhance energy levels, regulate mood, improve sleep, sharpen focus, and much more.

'In a time when stress is a common factor in many of our lives, emotional and physical wellness are increasingly important. Relying too heavily on caffeine and other stimulants for alertness, and often using alcohol to wind down in the evening, places a huge strain on the body,' the nutritionist adds.

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So, why mushroom coffee? 'The movement is gaining momentum, and for good reason, Berry explains, 'Traditionally, mushroom coffee contains less caffeine than regular coffee, which is helpful if you’re trying to wean yourself off caffeine, or if you’re conscious of the way that regular coffee can spike your cortisol levels and mess with your stress hormones.'

She recommends looking for mushroom coffees which contain maca, helpful for digestion and ashwagandha for stress. While cordyceps gives your cells more energy and increases your alertness without being a stimulant. Lion’s Mane also increases mental focus and alertness, as well as helps to balance your mood.

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