It has been requested that I post my TOP SECRET Bloody Mary recipe here.  This recipe has served me well since my early bartending days at the Dock and Dine in Old Saybrook, CT, back in the 80’s…(ok, I probably shouldn’t date myself like that!).   My wife and I enjoy these on lazy Sunday’s when reading the paper in front of the fire, and friends have enjoyed them on Block Island many a time as well ( Thanks Bob and Mary R!!!)

This has been a recipe I have used for a couple of decades, and only now am I releasing it to the lucky followers of this blog!  A couple of caveats though.  Use good vodka, not the cheap stuff.  You can get a decent bottle of vodka for about 12 bucks – Svedka, or a new Polish vodka called Sobieski, which is totally amazing for about ten bucks.  Sobieski will stand up to all but the best Russian or Polish vodkas out there for about half the price, and its a great martini vodka as well .  Why the good stuff?  Cheap vodka tastes like anti-freeze, and that taste will come through in the drink.  A good vodka has a very smooth subtle nutty taste.  Keep it in the freezer – absolutely essential for vodka storage!  Not sure why – it just tasts better thick and cold….

I prefer V8, though straight tomato juice has its good points too.  Sometimes I mix 1/2 and 1/2 V8 and Tomato – either way, juice should be COLD, not room temperature.  Now as for heat – spice is ESSENTIAL to a Bloody!  There is nothing worse than just tomato juice and vodka, with a pinch of horse raddish thrown in – so many restaurants serve that – yuk! However, that said, this recipe is VERY spicy.  When I started making it for my wife, I used about 7 shakes of Tobasco, and she thought that was pretty hot – we are up to 13 now, and she is loving it! Start slow with the Tobasco, and work your way up to a comfortable flavor.  Don’t use other hot sauces- the red pepper tast of the real Tobasco is essential to the bouquet! (although I have added Marie Sharpes, from Belize, on occassion- Habanero and Carrot – sweet and spicy at the same time…. yum.  Thanks Tory for that find!  Oh, by the way, I owe you a couple of bottles of it…..your stash kind of disapeared…)

So here is my secret recipe for the first time in public –  as always – measurements are approximate ( I never measure – consequently, it’s always hard to convert to a hard copy recipe for me)  All portions are to taste, so feel free to experiment with what you like.


Block Island Bloody Marys
Servings: 3


In a cocktail shaker:
  1. 3 oz cold vodka – use a decent vodka like Svedka – I keep it in the freezer.
  2. Fill to about ½ inch from the top with cold V-8 or tomato juice
  3. Add about 1 oz lemon juice
  4. 1 TSP of Dijon mustard
  5. 1 TBS of Worcestershire sauce
  6. 1 Heaping TSP ground  creamy style horse radish – use a regular serving TSP, not measuring.
  7. 13 shakes Tabasco Sauce ( to taste – this makes them SPICY so be careful!)
  8. 3 twists fresh ground sea salt
  9. 3-4 twists fresh ground pepper
  10. 1 ½ TSP Old Bay seasoning
  11. 1/2 TSP celery salt
Cover with the shaker top, and shake well.  I serve them in a wine glass, with no ice.  Garnish with fresh celery, or olives on a pic (or both), serve with a Sunday paper, and a bacon, egg and cheese sandwich ( and a crackling fire in the winter). Makes about 3 servings, 4 if you serve over ice.
Bon Appetit!

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