The Bloody Mary cocktail’s origins are about as murky as the drink itself.
But what is certain is that this drink has become a monstrosity. Why go to an entire Bloody Mary bar when there are tones of other liquors, wines, spirits and cocktails with rich histories and cultures? Since monsters as big as a Bloody Mary can only be taken down by bigger monsters, we’re going to play off of the cocktail’s historical recipe to create the epic Meaty Mary.
The basics of your typical Bloody Mary are simple: tomato and lemon juices, vodka, horseradish, hot sauce and worcestershire sauce. This is going off of what mixtorian David Wondrich, also a co-founder of the The Museum of the American Cocktail, wrote for Esquire’s online Drink Database.
As for its history, Wondrich seems unsure of its origins. The most popular claim is that famous writer Ernest Hemingway stumbled into his favorite Parisian, Lost Generation watering hole, Harry’s New York Bar.
As told by Alton Brown in his Bloody Mary episode of “Good Eats,” Hemingway, hungover from being Hemingway, manages to pull himself up to the bar and ask some ‘hair of the dog’ to help him out.
That’s when Harry gets the brilliant idea to use some newfangled canned tomato juice, a healthy foodstuffs addition in the 1920s and mixes all your basic components of a Bloody Mary into a glass with some sweet gin.
Nowadays, vodka, not gin, is the typical base spirit in this cocktail. However, if this was the ’20s there wouldn’t really be any in France. Vodka didn’t become a viable commercial liquor until the ’60s when ingenious Americans bought the rights and marketed it as legal moonshine — both are clear liquids and leave the still at an intoxicatingly high proof.
You can still ask for a gin Bloody Mary, also known as a red snapper, but why would you want to put gin in a Bloody Mary?
It’s absurd to try and combine the floral and botanical elements in gin with hot sauce, lemons and the anchovy-heavy worcestershire. And if you have enough of any of those ingredients, it’s just going to kill the spirits’ flavors. Regardless, the red snapper is just one of the variations to this hulking blob of bloody recipes. There’s even a mention on Wikipedia’s list of variations called the Bloody Green Dragon. Using marijuana-infused vodka, essentially you can wake and bake as well as recover from your hangover.
It’s about time, though, for the silver bullet to finally stop the useless duplication of the same basic recipe. After collectively imbibing enough of these things, you can see a pattern of grotesquely packed glasses with garnishes clawing out to you from all sides. (If you’re so inclined, do a Google image search of “Bloody Mary” to see one with crab legs sticking out like the whole thing was a boozy spider demon sent to give you indigestion.)
In that same vein of packing your Bloody Mary to the rim, meet the Meaty Mary: it’s just not kosher.
Keep in mind, this drink is a meal in itself essentially created in four Frankenstein-like parts: the cup, bloody mix, booze and garnishes. Once you’ve made those, the result is an unhealthy, delicious, spicy nectar of Dionysus, the Greek god of debauchery, which balances the heat of the peppers with the sweetness of the candied bacon to fill your belly and wake up after any night of partying. This is best shared with friends or roommates, but if you’re hungry enough you can down this all by yourself.
Make yourself a candied bacon goblet. Lacing your bacon into a six-by-six strip mat, cover it with brown sugar. Then place an empty tin can in the middle, then wrap with bacon and cover with brown sugar until you can feel your heart clogging.
As for cooking it, just place it in your oven and let it bake for 20 minutes at 400ºF. Once your done you should leave the tin cup in so the Meaty Mary won’t spill out, but let it cool down in the fridge so you’re not drinking your cocktail warm. Then dip the rim in some bacon grease and rim it with some kosher salt to keep the Mary’s tradition.
Meaty Mary Mix
While the goblet is still in the oven, make the bloody mix. Grab simple tomato juice, fresh being the best, and mix it with some serrano and pepper juice. You can throw the peppers in a blender, dump the blend into a coffee filter and then juice that to make a nuclear green spicy liquid. The piece de resistance, if you’re a masochist, is a drop of ghost chili pepper juice.
Ghost chili peppers, or bhut jolokia, is the hottest pepper in the world, coming in just below law enforcement grade pepper spray on the Scoville scale of heat. People in India use this as elephant repellent, so only use one drop or you will be hospitalized.
With all this heat and bacon flavor, a good neutral-flavored vodka works fine. But this is the Meaty Mary, so we’re going to replace the Bloody Mary’s lemons. Mix in an equal part of lemonade Four Loko, because when life gives you lemons, you rage.
Finally, its time to make your garnishes. We aren’t going to mess around with any vegetables, so throw out those olives and celery sticks and grab some bacon wrapped serrano peppers filled with cream cheese and jalapeno and cheese corndogs slices. For your poppers, just cut off the top, remove the middle part with seeds and fill it with gooey cream cheese. Then for the corndog, just remove the stick, fill with cheese and jalapeno seeds then slice it like into fourths.
Once all that’s done, grab your meat goblet, fill it with your spicy Loko Mary mixture, and then garnish it with poppers and corndogs. Then just sit back and feel like a superior animal gnawing at your bacon and sipping the peppery nectar of your victory over the spring semester.