bloody marvellous bloody mary!

Oh how I like a well-made Bloody Mary and this version is my favourite. It is quite simple (why gild the lily?) and I am convinced of it's life-affirming properties; it is known to cure most ills.

a bloody marvellous bloody mary!
This popular cocktail typically contains vodka, tomato juice, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco, lemon or lime juice, celery salt and black pepper. Some versions also contain beef consommé, horseradish, cayenne pepper, port or sherry. (Although probably not all together). One of my favourites had a secret ingredient that the bartender later confessed to being Absolut Mandarin, a vodka infused with natural orange oils, which blend beautifully with the the spicy tomato base.

Serves: 3 highball glasses
Skill level: Easy
Preparation time: 10 mins

300ml vodka (or a flavoured vodka such as chilli, orange, lemon or pepper, but adjust seasonings to taste)
a slug of dry sherry (or port)
a couple of dashes of Tabasco (or preferred hot sauce)
600ml tomato juice, chilled
¼ - ½ tsp lemon juice
a few shakes of celery salt
a few dashes of Worcestershire sauce
a good grinding of salt and black pepper
1 x celery stick

  1. Pour all ingredients, except for the celery sticks, into a tall pitcher.
  2. Use a celery stick to stir, leave it in the pitcher. This may be given an indolent stir or a vigorous shake; a very forgiving drink. (However, if allowed to stand, this will need to be stirred before each pouring).
  3. Garnish with a celery stick and serve over ice.

  • Replace the sherry with port.
  • Replace the ice cubes with frozen cherry tomatoes
  • Add 1 teaspoon of horseradish sauce
  • Cherry Marys: for a naughty cocktail party nibble, inject cherry tomatoes with the Bloody Mary mix (excluding the tomato juice) although your guests may become quietly pickled!
  • Hangover cure: add a few drops of Fernet Branca.

a trip around the drinks cabinet:
Bloody Bishop: Sherry in equal measure to vodka
Bloody Fairy: Absinthe replacing the vodka.
Bloody Geisha: Sake replacing vodka.
Bloody Maria: Tequila replacing vodka.
Bloody Maureen: Guinness replacing vodka.
Bloody Molly: Irish Whisky replacing vodka.
Bloody Murder: Gin replacing vodka.
Bloody Scotsman: Scottish Whisky replacing vodka.
Virgin Mary or a Bloody Shame: all the trimmings but no alcohol.

tasting notes:
The sounds of some cool, cool jazz and a little Ernest Hemingway or M.F.K. Fisher.


tasteofbeirut said...

Thank you for such an important tip! Now I am eager to try this bloody mary, your way! (and invite a bunch of people over as well to sample)

Emily Blair said...

Bloody marvellous indeed! Have been reading your blog from links from The Guardian newspaper. You never disappoint and always bring a smile to my face. :)