The traditional Bloody Mary has always been a confused creature– a misappropriated soup at best, a gag-inducing goulash at worst, but certainly never a cocktail. Often a thick, swampy, sour combination of cooked tomato juice from a can, Tabasco sauce, Worcestershire, and vodka, it fills the appetite instead of stimulating it and burdens the spirit instead of lifting it.
The local market was offering some gorgeous tomatoes on the vine, so I decided to make a version with more integrity. Less an appetizer and more a cocktail, this version is bright and clean, bursting with umami, and bloody delicious– a perfect pairing with Sunday brunch.
Artisanal Bloody Mary
- 1.5 oz. Hendricks gin
- 3 oz. fresh-squeezed tomato juice, preferably heirloom or grape.
- 1 barspoon aged balsamic vinegar
- 1 barspoon fresh-grated horseradish
- 1 barspoon tomato paste
- pinch of sea salt
- dash of angostura bitters
Shake with ice and strain into coupe glass. Garnish with freshly-cracked black pepper and a tomato leaf.