At Bonnie’s in Brooklyn, chef Calvin Eng was sure he wanted MSG on the menu, and incorporating it into a dirty Martini felt like a “perfect fit,” according to Channing Centeno, who developed the drinks program there. “It’s been a fight within the Asian American community for years and years and years, so I thought it’d be really fun to not just have MSG as an ingredient, but MSG in the name,” Centeno says. In the cocktail, MSG olive brine gives an umami flavor that appeals even to those who don’t typically drink dirty Martinis.
- 2 1/2 ounce gin, preferably Botanist, or vodka, preferably Grey Goose
- 1 ounce Bonnie’s MSG-olive brine (see Editor’s Note)
- 1/2 ounce Shaoxing wine
Garnish: 3 castelvetrano olives
- Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass with ice and stir until chilled.
- Strain into a Martini or coupe glass.
- Garnish with 3 castelvetrano olives.
Bonnie's uses a proprietary MSG-laced brine, but as a substitute they suggest using olive brine plus 1 dash of MSG solution.
Dissolve MSG in water at a ratio of 1:50, by weight, and pour into a dasher bottle.