Well, whaddya know, January 1st - New Year's Day - is also National Bloody Mary Day. Convenient since more Bloodies are probably consumed today than any other day of the year. Maybe because it's also National Hangover Day!
What makes up a Bloody Mary?
The I.B.A. (International Bartenders Association) recipe calls for 3 parts vodka, 6 parts tomato juice and 1 part lemon juice served over ice. Traditionally the standard garnish is a celery stalk and a slice of lime with typical flavor additions of Worcestershire Sauce, celery salt, Tabasco Sauce, salt and pepper. Raw eggs have been known to be involved as well.
That's how it all started, BUT in today's world of Bloodies the tradition has been toyed with, big time. You're going to need to sit down for this. There are:
Canadian Bloodies also known as Bloody Caesars (Clamato for the tomato juice)
Japanese Bloodies aka Bloody Geishas (sake instead of vodka)
Bloody Marias (tequila instead of vodka)
Beer Bloodies (Micheladas and Red Eyes)
Bloody Bulls (a Bullshot* with half the bouillon replaced with tomato juice)
Bloody Eights (V-8 instead of tomato juice)
Bloody Fairies (absinthe instead of vodka)
Red Snappers (gin instead of vodka)
Brown Marys aka Bloody Scotsman (whisky instead of vodka)
AND, me hearties, there is even a rum Bloody known as a Bloody Pirate!
There is also a virgin (non-alcoholic) version called the Bloodless Mary, a Frozen Mary (blended with ice) and countless proprietary recipes!
Whew! Are you still with me?
Then hang tight and let's take a look see at how far our favorite hangover remedy has strayed from there . . .
Who invented the Bloody Mary?
Who really knows? Claims range from Fernand Petiot (who is said to have created it in 1921 while working at The New York Bar in Paris, later known as Harry's New York Bar) to The Hemingway Bar at The Ritz in Paris to either bartender Henry Zbikiewicz or comedian George Jessel at The 21 Club in New York. Petiot himself said Jessel, but with this caveat, "I initiated the Bloody Mary of today. Jessel said he created it, but it was really nothing but vodka and tomato juice when I took it over." As for why it's called a Bloody Mary, let's just say because of Queen Mary (the First) or Mary Pickford or Vladimir Smirnov and leave it at that.
Dazed and confused yet?
You need a Bloody, don't you? Well, Ladies and Germs, after that little history lesson, here are the multitude of recipe riffs I have played on our Bloody lady: