I'm about as much a fan of day drinking as I am sleeping. Bloody Mary's have this ability to transform mornings of hell into bliss, but lately, Bloody Mary's have been over-stuffed and under-poured.
In Oxford, there are a few places that are known for their Bloody's. Ajax, one of the cheap, casual family dining restaurant's claim they have one of the best. That's bull. The past three times I have gotten a Bloody there, I have sat and beat myself up knowing it wasn't going to be good! They have been watery and needed more vodka to get over the awful mix that doesn't please the palate. I'm pretty sure they need to serve their's with a toothpick as well, with all the crap you get in your teeth. Either way, fail on the bloody mary. They charge you six dollars for colored acid water, that doesn't come out well in the end...you know what I mean..
Volta is also known to have pretty good Bloody's! I agree with this one...I think they are some of the best one's in Oxford! Volta also has the good patio and the chill staff. I love going to Volta.
My friend Gemma bartends at The Library Sports Bar, and they have a decent Bloody, but it is only appropriate to get those on a Saturday morning, since it's mostly only open at night.
What's wrong with the world and its take on Bloody's is that they try too hard to make it everything else it doesn't need to be. Hey, lets add pickled things to a bloody! Enough to where it fills up half the glass, then we'll throw in some lime and/or lemon slices, some really awkward flavored salt on the top, black pepper out the ass, horseradish and A1, olive juice...beer...blah blah blah. It's time to come back to what is delicate and wonderful and personal, about a Bloody Mary..I think I have a pretty good idea what the perfect Bloody should be..
When I lived in London, we took the metro to Notting Hill, and my roommate (Charles Gautier, may our friendship rest in peace) and I stumbled upon a pub called The Prince Albert. This is where I learned the true art of pouring a Bloody Mary. It doesn't start with the ice.. it should be built, poured, and then add the ice.
Lime Wedge, Lemon Wedge, squeeze them and discard the actual peel and substance.
two cracks of black pepper, salt, V8, DASH of worcestershire, and let's be real, make it equal parts vodka if you're feeling like a real man. Seriously...those are all the ingredients you really need in a Bloody Mary. The guy muddled all that mess in a drink mixer and poured it into a fresh glass, that he then filled up with ice. he still added a lemon and a lime wedge and celery stalk, but it's all that was needed. It was beautiful.
Of course, if you're lazy, Mr. T's Bold and Spicy is my personal favorite, unfortunately most restaurants settle for Zing Zang, which I don't prefer.
Peace and Bloody's,