(courtesy of Sean Stitt, owner, Chapel Tavern in Reno. Serves 1)
As Stitt points out, the horseradish vodka is important. Instead of dumping chunks of creamy or raw horseradish into the drink and creating an uneven cocktail that’s either too full of horseradish or that has too little, using an infused vodka creates an even flavor so every sip is exactly the same. Consistency is key with cocktails!
2 ounces horseradish-infused vodka (recipe below)
1 ounce Guinness Dry Irish Stout
¾ ounce fresh lemon juice
1½ rotations of freshly ground black pepper
4 dashes Worcestershire sauce
3 dashes ground celery salt
3 dashes Tabasco Hot Sauce (more or less depending on desired spice level)
Add vodka, Guinness, lemon juice, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, celery salt, and Tabasco sauce to 16-ounce glass, then fill with ice. Top with tomato juice.
Dump everything into mixing tin, then back into glass. Do not shake. Garnish with all the food you have in your house!
For horseradish-infused vodka
12 liters vodka
1½ pounds raw horseradish root, cut into small, coin-sized pieces
1 ounce freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon MSG
Let all ingredients sit in large container for a week. After that, frequently taste until desired flavor is achieved.
In addition to garnishes served by some of the area’s best bartenders, here are a few creative additions to try to infuse even more personality into your bloody mary:
- Grilled shrimp, seafood, and smoked salmon
- Cheese and meat cubes
- Caprese skewers (cheese, tomatoes, basil, balsamic glaze)
- Pickles, cucumbers, mushrooms, and baby corn
- Blue cheese-stuffed olives
- Fresh herb sprigs
- Fried chicken or chicken wings
- Bacon-wrapped dates
- Beef sticks or jerky
- Waffle sticks, pancakes, and hard-boiled eggs
- Rim the glass with ranch seasoning, Old Bay seasoning, or crushed potato chips