The Bloody Mary is an unusual mix of tomato juice, vodka, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, horseradish sauce, black pepper, and several other ingredients. Don’t let the disparate components fool you, however; the stuff is addicting.
Sterling Archer, everyone’s favorite animated (i.e. fictional) superspy, even has a prayer for it:
“For I am a sinner in the hands of an angry God. Bloody Mary full of vodka, blessed are you among cocktails. Pray for me now and at the hour of my death, which I hope is soon. Amen.”
There are various claims as to who created the cocktail. This includes:
- Fernand Petiot, a bartender, says he invented the cocktail in 1921. It’s the earliest claim, at least according to his granddaughter. Petiot was working at the New York Bar in Paris then, which later became Harry’s New York Bar, a frequent haunt for Ernest Hemingway.
- A bartender named Henry Zbikiewicz is said to have concocted the drink in the 1930s.
- George Jessel, a comedian and frequent patron of the 21 Club in New York. In 1939, gourmand/author Lucius Beebe said in his column This New York: “George Jessel’s newest pick-me-up which is receiving attention from the town’s paragraphers is called a Bloody Mary: half tomato juice, half vodka“.
Here’s what you’ll need to make your own Bloody Mary at home: