GOOD DRINK The true story behind the official drink of a buzzy brunch. BY BARRY KAUFMAN
PHOTO BY ROB KAUFMAN
There are certain things that may seem like opinions but are actually irrefutable facts. You don’t pair red wine with sushi. A slice of New York City-style pizza should be folded in half before eating. And most importantly, no bad day ever started with a Bloody Mary. It’s the quintessential brunch drink, a lively, peppery blend of flavor notes that refreshes, invigorates and only mildly intoxicates. It’s the launch pad for a relaxed day and a surefire cure for a hangover. Again, these sound like opinions, but they are very much facts. The line between opinion and fact blurs again when you try to determine who the Bloody Mary is named for. According to one version of the story, when Fernand Petiot mixed up the first Bloody Mary at Harry’s New York Bar in Paris, one of the patrons suggested the name in tribute to a woman he knew named Mary, a server at the Bucket of Blood Club in Chicago. Another version holds that “Bloody Mary” is just a mispronunciation of Vladimir, with the drink being named for Vladimir Smirov of the Smirnoff vodka family. There are even some who will tell you the drink was named for Mary Tudor, the famed 16th century “Bloody Mary” whose claim to fame was having a bunch of protestants killed. That’s a 26
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