Second only to the ever-popular espresso martini, the Bloody Mary is a cocktail that just about everybody, no matter how unskilled, should be able to make. And there’s nothing that makes the vodka and tomato juice icon more appealing than a garnish that ensures your drink is dressed to impress.
Want to know how to DIY a drinkable (some might say *too* drinkable…) Bloody Mary at home, and present it in Insta-worthy style? Here’s the ultimate recipe, plus how to whip up a drool-worthy garnish.
#1: Pick Up The Essential Ingredients
Obviously, you’ll need the key ingredients when it comes to this tasty cocktail:
#2: Cut Corners With The Rest…
When it comes to garnishing, you can definitely get away with cutting a few corners, but the key thing here is to pick a flavour theme and run with it.
Love an American-inspired garnish? Grab some sweet pickles, a block of American-style cheddar, and some beef jerky.
Keen to go the Asian route? Oven-baked mini spring rolls, tempura prawns, and a side of sweet chilli sauce will do the trick.
Or looking to keep it classic and veggie inspired? Beetroot crisps, paper-thin carrot slices and another few slices of orange and lemon are all you need.
#3: The Mixing
There’s no trick to mixing up a Bloody Mary. Simply pop a handful of ice cubes in a highball and pour in a shot (or shot and a half) of vodka.
Add a few drops of your chosen sauces—remember, check how spicy your mates like their drinks before tipping half a bottle of Tabasco in—then top up with tomato juice.
Add a stick of celery, then a pinch or two of the salt, and use the celery stick to stir.
DON’T use a straw to stir the drink. That piece of celery is waaaay more rigid than the straw, plus you don’t want to have your grubby hands all over the part that your friends will be drinking from.
#4: The Garnish
The key to an epic garnish—much like an epic cake, haircut or cross-seasonal outfit—is layering.
It doesn’t matter what ingredients you’re using to decorate your drink, make sure they’re trimmed into a manageable size (not the mini spring rolls, obvs), then begin layering them, one by one, using contrasting colours, onto your cocktail stick or kebab skewer.
If you’re using a skewer, it will go in the glass, so remember to push all of the garnishes to one end that will sit just on the rim. If you’re using a cocktail stick, it will sit across the glass so make sure your ingredients fit into the opening of the glass, allowing room for the straw.
Garnished and good to go? Now add the straw. Tadah
#5: Serve & Snap… Before It Falls Apart
Like any cocktail experience, your DIY creations should be served with an air of, “Oh, this little thing? Just something I whipped up, totally stress-free!” even if you’ve been having a Christian Bale-esque meltdown behind the scenes. Set your drink down, snap it before it disintegrates (ew, melty ice), and bask in your well-deserved cocktail glory.
Seriously lacking in life hacks? Make sure to keep up-to-date with our bi-weekly Nailed It columns on everything you need to know for, well, life.
Image credit: Gabby Stjernqvist for The Urban List