Thursday, September 22, 2011

Recipe of the Week: The History of the Bloody Mary

A few weeks ago, I remembered that we had a half bottle of vodka in our liquor cabinet and several stalks of celery in our fridge. Add some tomato juice, and you have the start of a Bloody Mary bar. Do you know the history of the Bloody Mary?

It's one of the world's most complex cocktails, primarily containing vodka, tomato juice and other spices and flavorings.

The Bloody Mary's origin is unclear, but Fernand Petiot claimed to have invented the drink in 1921 while working at the New York Bar (later, Harry's New York Bar), a frequent Paris hangout for Ernest Hemingway and other American expatriates.

Another tradition maintains that actor George Jessel created the drink around 1939 and around that time, Lucius Beebe printed in his gossip column "This New York" one of the earliest U.S. references to this drink, along with the original recipe.

Bloody Mary recipe as taught by the New York School of Bartending
  • 1 oz. to 1½ oz. (30-45 ml) vodka in a tall glass filled with ice (I like to add my shot @ the end)
  • Fill glass with tomato juice (I like V-8)
  • 1 dash celery salt
  • 1 dash ground black pepper
  • 1 dash Tabasco sauce
  • 2-4 dashes Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/8 tsp. horseradish
  • Dash of lemon or lime juice
Garnish with celery stalk (we also like pickled bean or asparagus and green olives). May be shaken vigorously or stirred lazily, as desired.