|I have heard only two explanations for the name of this drink. One is that it was named after Mary 1 of England, a sixteenthcentury queen who was nicknamed Bloody Mary because of the number of people that she had put to death. It is quite certain that nobody drank vodka and tomato juice before Mary got her epithet, so 1 prefer this explanation to the one that gives credit to the character in the 1949 musical South Pacific who was designated bloody because her teeth were stained red from chewing betel nuts.
Of course, given the way English royalty used to have people killed, it is somewhat surprising that we don't have a whole lineage of drinks named Bloody Ethelred, Bloody Henry, Bloody Richard, and Bloody Harold. I imagine that the Brits only gave the title to Mary because such behavior was unbecoming to a female.
As to who first concocted the Bloody Mary, well, many different people have taken credit, but it is usually credited to a bartender at Harry's New York Bar in Paris during the 1920s. His name was Fernand Petiot.
You may want to make a batch of Bloody Marys if you are throwing a brunch or a breakfast party. If so, make the tomato juice mixture without the vodka. That way the mix won't separate, and nondrinkers can help themselves to Virgin Marys.
Variations on the Bloody Mary include the Bloody Bull, Bloody Maria, and Clamato Cocktail.
2 1/2 ounces vodka
5 ounces tomato juice
1/2 ounce lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon celery seed 3dashes Worcestershire sauce
1 dash Tabasco sauce
1 celery rib
1 lime wedge
In a shaker half-filled with ice cubes, combine the vodka, tomato juice, lemon juice, pepper, salt, celery seed, Worcestershire, and Tabasco. Shake well. Strain into a highball glass almost filled with ice cubes. Garnish with the celery and the lime wedge.