The Oyster Cocktail
Long before anyone made it boozy, the genesis of the Virgin Mary lies in a drink supposedly developed for 'the benefit of those who may be possessed of suicidal intentions.’ It consisted of seven small oysters, Tabasco, lemon, horseradish, chili sauce, green pepper sauce, African pepper ketchup, black pepper, and then topped with tomato juice. We double dare you to give that a go...
Umami, “the fifth taste” was officially identified
Kikunae Ikeda, a professor of chemistry at the Imperial University of Tokyo, was the first person to officially identify a fifth taste (after sweetness, sourness, bitterness and saltyness) that effects our taste receptors. Translated from it’s original Japanese, umami literally means “savoury deliciousness”, and it’s discovery gives us the perfect word to describe that wonderful richness that makes a proper Bloody Mary such a unique drink.
The year that George Jessel claims to have invented the Bloody Mary in his Palm Beach home when he mixed vodka, tomato juice and seasoning, and the name happened when his friend Mary spilled some of the concoction on her shirt and she said, "Now, you can call me Bloody Mary, George!"
The Modern Mary - Pete Petoit
Fernand “Pete” Petoit claims to have invented the basic Bloody Mary (a la our friend George Jessel) in 1921, but it was in 1934 that he refined it to the drink we know and love today. “I cover the bottom of the shaker with four large dashes of salt, two dashes of black pepper, two dashes of cayenne pepper, and a layer of Worcestershire sauce; I then add a dash of lemon juice and some cracked ice, put in two ounces of vodka and two ounces of thick tomato juice, shake, strain, and pour.” Nailed it.
The Pump Room, a celeb-studded restaurant where movie stars congregate in it’s exclusive Booth No. 1, opens in Chicago's Ambassador East Hotel. It is reputed that a guest of The Pump Room, unable to find a swizzle stick, is the first to stir the Bloody Mary with a celery stick. Bloody celebs.
Bloody Mary officially recognised as world's most complex cocktail
Real life scientists (led by Dr Costa Neil Da Costa) determined that from the standpoint of flavour chemistry, a proper Bloody Mary is as complex as it gets, with a blend of hundreds of flavour compounds that act on the taste senses. As he pointed out, “it covers almost the entire range of human taste sensations: sweet, salty, sour and umami, but not bitter” It’s a marvel. Popularity of Bloody Marys on planes finally explained - 2015 And, surprise surprise, it comes down to umami. According to a study conducted by Cornell University, sweetness is suppressed “in noisy situations—like the 85 decibels aboard a jetliner” while the taste of umami-rich foods like tomato juice was “significantly enhanced.” Just one more reason we love that savoury deliciousness.
Bloody Drinks Bloody Classic Was Born
You could argue it was was over 120 years in the making, but in 2019, finally, someone (that’s us) worked out how to make the perfect, umami packed version of the drink and can it so it’s deliciously fresh and consistently delicious, every time. You’re Bloody Welcome.