The Ultimate Bloody Mary Bar

Bloody Mary Bar

Having a Bloody Mary Bar  is essential to Christmas gatherings in my home. I’ve imported  this set-up from my experiences growing up in Alabama; a Bloody Mary bar  – plain and simple – is classic Southern hospitality. Spicy Cheddar Cheese Straws are the expecting nosh in these operations. Spicy nuts and cheese are also encouraged.

I like the idea as it’s low-maintenance; guests can make their own drink according to their palates; Virgin (non-alcoholic) Marys encouraged.  My daughter Greta’s recent touch was stuffing large pitted olives with creamy gorgonzola, insuring the best Bloody Mary on the planet. The following recipe can be adapted to your palate, as simple or elaborate as you wish.

Recipe: Classic Bloody Mary Bar


  • Bloody Mary Base, such as Tomato Juice, V8, Clamato of any combination of the three
  • Horseradish (freshly grated, preferred)
  • Worcestershire Sauce
  • Hot Sauce (your preferred; I enjoy classic Tabasco)
  • Celery, cucumber sticks, long, thin chili peppers &/or bacon strips*
  • Pickled items such as dills, okra, asparagus, green beans or skewered shrimp
  • Raw oysters
  • Olives (Hand-stuffed gorgonzolas are a favorite)
  • Limes & lemons
  • Bucket of Ice, glasses, swizzle sticks, shot glass and cocktail napkins
  • Your preferred vodka or gin**

*These items may be used as swizzle sticks

**Gin makes a red snapper


  1. You may make a seasoned tomato base yourself, or let your guests make their own.
  2. Arrange your choice of accoutrement around ice filled bucket, glasses, swizzle sticks, shot glasses and napkins.

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