There are two well known Bloody Marys that are often the point of good conversation. One is a combination of clear spirits and the finest of flavors, starting with tomato base, the other Mary I, Queen of England and Ireland. There are several other Bloody Marys, including one having to do with a spirit and a mirror, but we will leave these alternatives for other discussions. Today we pay homage to the drink we often sip on a sunny Sunday afternoon, whilst having brunch.
First, let us take in a brief history lesson. What is the origin of the term Bloody Mary? Like most good things in life, its origins are a bit cloudy. When narrowing down the search, two people prominently appear. The suspects in question for creating such a fine concoction include Fernand Petiot in 1921, at New York Bar, a frequent hang out of one Ernest Hemingway, and George Jessel in 1939. Interestingly, Petiot, in an interview printed in the July 1964 edition of The New Yorker more or less gives credit to the name and drink to Jessel, but claims he brings the drink into what we now know it to be:
“I initiated the Bloody Mary of today,” he told The New Yorker. “Jessel said he created it, but it was really nothing but vodka and tomato juice when I took it over. I cover the bottom of the shaker four large dashes of salt, two dashes of black pepper, two dashes of cayenne pepper, and a layer of Worcestershire sauce; I then add a dash of lemon juice and some cracked ice, put in two ounces of vodka and two ounces of thick tomato juice, shake, strain, and pour. We serve a hundred to a hundred and fifty Bloody Marys a day here in the King Cole Room and in the other restaurants and the banquet rooms.”
This is specifically suspect given the fact that Petiot is credited with it elsewhere almost 20 years earlier than Jessel.
The muddiness of the origins of the drink history aside, the name Bloody Mary itself, is twice as confusing. Is it named after:
As long as the name and the mix make for an appetizing discussion over a delicious libation, do any of the historic details make a difference?
- Mary I?
- The lady spirit that can be summoned from a mirror?
- An ex-lover of one of the “creators”?
- A famed movie star of the day?
- A waitress named Mary at the Bucket of Blood bar in Chicago?
- Or possibly a jab at Soviet Russian iconography of Saint Mary when tomato juice was added to vodka for President Nixon during Soviet dignitary’s visits?
On to what really matters – making a quality Bloody Mary.
At Robert Redd we like our Bloodys a bit on the spicy side. To acquire this, we prefer our Bloody REDDTM Mix. Best served in four (4) parts, with one (1) part of our favorite Vodka, and one (1) part love, over ice, stirred and with a squeeze of lime, garnished with a celery stalk.
If you don’t happen to have a bottle of Bloody REDDTM we can suggest a few sub-par alternatives to our Bloody REDDTM that can hopefully whet your appetite. If you would like a bottle of Bloody REDDTM, drop us a line and we will make the effort to get you one before your next Sunday Brunch!
Again, we aren’t to be responsible for the lack of taste with any of these alternatives, but we love to support your efforts in getting housed!
||NY School of Bartending Bloody
||Arthur's Bloody Mary
- 3 Parts Vodka
- 6 Parts Tomato Juice
- 1 Part Lemon Juice
- 1 oz. to 1½ oz. (30-45 ml) vodka
- Crushed Ice
- Fill glass with tomato juice
- 1 dash celery salt
- 1 dash ground black pepper
- 1 dash Tabasco sauce
- 2-4 dashes Worcestershire sauce
- 1/8 tsp. horseradish (pure, never creamed)
- Dash of lemon or lime juice
- 1 1/4 oz. vodka
- Dash of lemon juic
- Dash of lime juice
- Dash of Worcestershire
- Dash of Tabasco sauces
- Dash of horseradish
- Pepper and Salt
- Dash of granulated onion
- Dash of garlic powder or fresh
- Tomato juice to fill
Directions: Shake or stir ingredients in appropriate glass ware.
Common Garnishes: Celery Stalk, Lemon Wedge, Lime Wedge, Skewer of Olives, Carrots, Mushrooms,
Hot Peppers, Shrimp, Pickled Vegetables/Beans