The Bloody Mary is renowned as a hangover cure in a hair of the dog, let’s keep on the sauce kind of a way!
This isn’t a method of curing a pounding head and queasy tummy that I have tried before but many stand by it. A Bloody Mary is the perfect accompaniment to a social brunch and if you take out the vodka element, turning it into a Virgin Mary, then you have quite a healthy concoction of tomato and spice, but that’s not the idea here really is it!?
The variation in spiciness of a Bloody Mary can range from the sublime to the ridiculous. A dash or two of a hot sauce such as Tabasco to tickle the taste buds versus a full head implosion in the form of the mind blowing Blair’s 16 Million Reserve. The latter perhaps taking things a little too far though. The one tip to head when making this cocktail is to start out with just a little of your chosen hot sauce and build up the intensity to suit your palate as once you’ve added even a drop too much there’s no going back.
Yield: 1 cocktail
Prep time: 5 minutes
Variations: Horseradish can also be added to the seasoning for an extra kick if you think it needs it. Other seasoning options include: beef bouillon, cayenne pepper, smoked paprika. The list goes on. It’s one way to use up those festering spices in the back of the food cupboard anyway.
“The World’s Most Complex Cocktail”
If you have the time and the patience to make a Bloody Mary using fresh tomato or tinned tomatoes then simply add about a dozen tomatoes or a tin of tomatoes to a blender along with a stick of celery and a handful of flat-leafed parsley sprigs and puree until smooth. Chill the mixture for about an hour and strain through a sieve. Then put the drink together as detailed above. It’s a labour of love but perhaps if you plan on making up a batch of tomato based pasta sauce you can keep some on the side for a Bloody Mary or two.
I first discovered raspberry vodka a few years back whilst running a pub. It was Absolut Raspberry and as with everything that is new it had an initial surge of popularity that then curbed and evened out. It wasn’t just a flash in the pan; we kept it in stock and a few regulars that drank it with lemonade (that’s 7-up style lemonade). It was also a handy ingredient to use in shooter and cocktail recipes.
Lab Soho is a lively, friendly cocktail bar with an edge of sticky about the place like it needs a good clean. You could argue that this adds to the character and appeal depending on what you look for in a bar. The cocktail range is vast and they taste fairly decent too but be prepared to wait if it’s busy and potentially then be faced with a glass full of crushed ice.
Vodka is a neutral spirit that tends not to have a distinctive flavour or taste in its untampered form. Vodka is generally not aged and can be made using a range of accessible materials and ingredients such as potatoes, grains, sugars, fruit and most things that are capable of being fermented. This makes it a spirit that is easy to produce in a relatively short space of time.
Opium is a hidden gem amongst the back to back bustling restaurants of Gerrard Street.
Vodka has been sipped, downed and applied across the globe for centuries. Originating in Eastern Europe towards the end of the 9th century the name is derived from the Russian word ‘voda’ meaning water. It was primarily used for medicinal purposes and as an ingredient in gun powder during the Middle Ages but during the 14th century became an established drink in Russia and by the middle of the 16th century was recognised as the national drink of Poland and Finland. But what is vodka made from?
London cocktail week was a great opportunity to try out bars and cocktails that you hadn’t yet got around to checking out or test driving and it also provided a perfect excuse (if you needed one) to get out and about a few nights in a row to squeeze in as many £4 discounted drinks as you could in one week!