A Bloody Mary is the perfect Sunday morning cocktail. They're great for New Year's Day, tailgating and all year long!
I learned how to make this utterly delicious classic bloody mary recipe from my granfather when I was 10 years old. It sounds crazy I know, but there's a story there.
As an adult I've grown to love serving a bloody mary with brunch or at tailgate parties. Even better when they're piled high with garnish! (In fact, a bloody mary is one of my favorite brunch recipes.)
Growing up I lived in Ohio and my grandfather lived in California. Sadly, this means we didn’t see each other a lot.
Then one summer my parents surprised me with my first plane ride out to California. For a 10 year old kid this felt like winning the lottery.
While there I ate massive amounts of fresh clam chowder, got locked in a cell at Alcatraz, walked over the Golden Gate Bridge (very scary if you are wondering), snuck a sip of beer from my dad on a brewery tour and walked till my feet ached.
However, the best part of being in California was spending time with my grandfather and his wife Joanne.
He and I would wake up early in the morning to make homemade pancakes, stay up late at night to swim, take road trips to the Redwood forests (just so I could say I walked through a tree) and stay up each night playing cribbage.
At 10 years old I may not have valued my time with my grandfather, but looking back it was perfect. My grandfather was the type of man who could make you feel welcome even if you felt out of place.
He would light up a room with his smile and always added a little gin to his morning orange juice. He also used to make a world famous bloody Mary.
That summer he taught me how to make his famous drink and I immediately became the family bartender.
I like to think it’s luck that he taught me this secret recipe before he passed away. In fact, every time I visit my family in Ohio, I’m always asked to make a few rounds.
Sometimes when I’m in the kitchen making drink after drink, I want to start chatting with him like he is still by my side. We had so much fun in that kitchen together.
I’m sure it’s not politically correct to be making drinks at 10 years of age, but it was a blast. I was part of the grown up crowd. Plus this was our special thing. No one else was allowed in our Bloody Mary club.
Over the years I have given the drink a few twists, and lately my family has been craving the horseradish edition. It gives the drink a spicy twist that some find refreshing and zesty.
Trust me. You’re going to love this cocktail.
Bloody Mary Ingredients
- Vodka - A bloody mary is typically made with a good, clean vodka
- Worcestershire Sauce - The Worcestershire sauce adds a great briny savoriness to this drink
- Lime - A squeeze of fresh citrus (often lime, but lemon is also delicious) brightens up the heavier flavors of a bloody mary
- Celery seed or celery salt - A touch of celery adds a depth of flavor you don't want to miss
- Tabasco - A splash of hot sauce is a must! You may opt for sriracha if it's your preferred hot sauce.
- Horseradish - Add a kick to your drink with more or less horseradish to taste
- Tomato juice - Tomato juice is the basis for a bloody mary
- Garnishes - The garnishes are half the fun! Think celery, pickles, scallions, tomatoes, olives, cheese, even shrimp!
Brunch Cocktail Recipes
If tomato juice isn't your thing, don't miss this banana daiquiri recipe! It's absolutely delicious and perfect for brunch as well.
This jam toast cocktail boasts prosecco and, you guessed it, jam. The result is a bubbly, sweet cocktail that's a crowd pleaser.
Of course no brunch is complete without a classic mimosa. The combination of bubbly and orange juice is never the wrong choice.
While not a traditional brunch cocktail, a crisp and tart Moscow mule is a great addition to your brunch menu with the burst of lime and ginger.
And we can't forget the bellini for brunch! This raspberry mango bellini is my pick.
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