I Tried The Vanderpump’s Martini with Everything Bagel Spice

published Sep 11, 2022
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I Tried Vanderpump’s Savory Take On The Martini
Credit: Vanderpump à Paris

Martinis have always been my go-to order when I’m at a nice bar or restaurant. While my tastes generally lean toward a dirty vodka (usually Belvedere) martini, I’m always excited when I find a fun new variation. 

Recently, while in Las Vegas and having dinner at Vanderpump à Paris — which is Lisa Vanderpump’s new restaurant at Paris Las Vegas — there was one thing in particular that caught my attention. Of course, the space was as trendy and filled with beautiful people as one may expect, but what immediately jumped out at me was an item on the cocktail menu.

The Le Dirty Bleu is the dirty gin martini (which we’re all familiar with), but it has one unexpected edge that places it a step above the rest: a rim of everything bagel spice and a few other savory touches. At a time when we are seeing Everything Bagel Spice on, well, everything (from ice cream to salmon), why not add it to our cocktail?

“There’s no drink more classic than a dirty gin martini … but classic doesn’t always have to be boring,” Pandora Vanderpump Sabo told Kitchn in a statement via email. “While it’s many people’s go-to at a bar, when you’re making this standby at home you can afford to have a little fun with it. At Vanderpump à Paris, I paired this favorite with a few garnishes that take it to the next level — the blue cheese-stuffed olives are skewered with fresh rosemary, so that from the moment you lift your drink, the soft, savory notes of this herb complement the strong nose of the gin. And to really make the most of this briny, herbal cocktail, I rim the glass with everything bagel spice — there’s nothing like the hint of a little onion and garlic to make this the perfect savory drink!”

How to Make Vanderpump’s Le Dirty Bleu Martini

The Vanderpump team was nice enough to share their recipe and it involves a pretty hefty amount of gin (3 ounces!), along with olive juice, to taste — depending on how dirty you like your drink. (The recipe calls for .5 to .75 ounces of olive juice, but for my own, I used almost a full ounce! That’s downright filthy.) Then, use another .5 ounce of dry vermouth, which is used to rinse the glass.  Finally, there’s the garnish of blue cheese-stuffed olives and a sprig of fresh rosemary, and a rim of everything bagel spice, which adheres to the glass thanks to a rimming glaze of simple syrup.

Credit: Aly Walansky

This recipe starts simple enough with making the rimming glaze. You’ll add 2 cups sugar and 1 cup water to a saucepan, bringing to a boil. Then, immediately reduce heat and let simmer until thick and syrupy, about 5 minutes. Another option here can be corn syrup.

After dipping your glass in the glaze, place a good amount of everything bagel spice on a plate and roll the rim of your martini glass in the seasoning — sort of like you would if you were rimming a margarita glass with salt or sugar. Then, chill your martini glass (I like to stash mine in the freezer for a half hour or so before I’m ready for it), and mix your gin and olive juice in a mixing glass filled with ice.

Be sure to stir well so that it’s super cold (no one likes a martini that’s not served that way; just ask James Bond!). Then, give your glass a quick vermouth rinse, before straining your martini into the glass. Finally, garnish with those cheese-filled olives skewered onto a sprig of rosemary.

My Honest Review of Vanderpump’s Le Dirty Bleu Martini

Dirty martinis are very much my thing, and at this point, I consider myself something of an aficionado. The addition of the rosemary and the everything bagel spice makes this boozy drink feel significantly more savory. And, really, if someone is drinking a dirty martini, don’t they already want a drink that is savory? The olives and the salty brine pair so well with the seasoning, which gives the cocktail a sort of salty texture and crunch.

I think the complexities of the gin really played well with the garlicky and sesame everything bagel spice mix, and it’s already giving me ideas for how this could be a beautiful choice for a welcome cocktail at Rosh Hashanah dinner or during a Hanukkah-themed brunch. So clearly, I will be making this over and over again.

Credit: Aly Walansky

Tips for Making Vanderpump’s Le Dirty Bleu Martini

  1. Feel free to switch out your spirit. The recipe calls for gin, but I tried to make a version with gin and a version with vodka, and I actually enjoyed the vodka version even more. I know gin is a more traditional martini spirit, but I’m personally a vodka girl more often than not. Go with what you like. Even something like aquavit could be great here (as well as a spirit), as the caraway in the liquor would pair beautifully with the spice on the rim.
  2. Use your favorite type of olive. The recipe called for blue cheese-stuffed olives, which is pretty traditional in a dirty martini. It’s delicious and works very well with the rosemary and everything bagel flavors. But when I tried to garnish with feta-stuffed olives, that salty, briny flavor actually worked even better! If you are avoiding dairy or just don’t like cheese in your martini, that’s fine, you can always use a classic like the Castelvetrano olive.
  3. Don’t worry about the simple syrup glaze. The recipe from Vanderpump uses a simple syrup glaze to create the rim for the everything bagel spice. Though that works great, a faster (and old-fashioned!) hack may be to use a bit of lemon juice.