Monday, May 11, 2020

Crazy Allan's Swamp Shack - Kema, TX

First let me offer my apologies for missing my post last week. 

Crazy Allan's Bloody Mary was very tasty and it looked wonderful, but it was pretty much your standard.  Nothing out of the ordinary except maybe some extra salt on the rim of the glass and that is kinda strange.  It's strange because there is nothing else normal about Crazy Allan's.  From the building to the entertainment to the food, the unique atmosphere at Crazy Allan's is special.  Everyone seems to know it too, as they turn out in droves to buy buckets of freshly cooked crawfish, wash them down with a cool drink, and listen to some great music.

Go check it out, you won't be dissapointed.  Order a beer, enjoy the food, pass on the Bloody Mary.

Taste:         5
Garnish:     6
Ambiance:  9 

Total Bloody Mary Score:26

Monday, April 27, 2020

Brian's Place - Spring Hill, FL

Brian's place is really neat little place we visit when we're visiting family in Florida.  Located by Hernando Beach, it offers locals a unique blend of latin and Italian cuisine.  This unique blend of tastes interestingly carries over to their bloody Mary.

Looking at the picture above it is easy to mistake this Bloody Mary for many others that I've had, but it is not the presentation that makes this one different, it's the taste.  Combining fruit flavors or Orange, Mango, and Raspberry with some of the more traditional ingredients and of course Bacon, give this drink a wonderfully refreshing quality and move it further towards becoming a breakfast drink than your standard fare.

I marked this higher on presentation only because it is hiding, behind the traditional look and feel, something totally different.  This bloody mary has a taste that you won't find anywhere else.  I highly suggest that you try one!

Taste:         9
Garnish:     6
Ambiance:  8 

Total Bloody Mary Score:30

Monday, April 20, 2020

Benson City Grill - Benson, AZ

Our tradition of having brunch, and of course a Bloody Mary, carried us to Benson City Grill soon after we arrived to stay for a few months over the winter.  The location was nearby and is located in the club house for the local municipal golf course.

One wall of this establishment is windows, looking out to outside seating, the golf course, and beautiful views of the Dragoon mountains to the East.  It made for a satisfying place to have a bite and a drink.

The food options are limited, but very tasty, however to our dismay there weren't many breakfast options that we were looking for.  We knew this going in, so it's not their fault, but ours for not having yet explored the local options.  I do recommend a visit if you are in the area, but plan for more lunch than brunch.

Now to the drink.  It was very satisfying, however there was nothing of note to set it apart.  It was surprisingly "run of the mill" in contrast to some of their more bold food menu options.

Taste:         6
Garnish:     6
Ambiance:  8 

Total Bloody Mary Score:25

Monday, April 13, 2020

T-Bone Tom's - Kemah, TX

I know what you're thinking, "Is that a cheap plastic cup?", and you are right.  Despite the unsophisticated glassware, this Bloody Mary was excellent.  It had just the right amount of spice, the cucumber works better for me than the usual stalk of celery, and it had enough alcohol that you could just taste it without it dominating the other flavors.

T-Bone Tom's, which has been featured on Diner's, Drive-in's, and Dives, has established themselves as one of "THE" restaurants you have to visit if you are in the area.  I had  "Tom's Choice", a 14 oz marinated rib-eye and it was the perfect meal with my Bloody Mary.

The restaurant featured a live band the night we went and combined with the food and sitting outside near the water it was a memorable time.  I highly suggest you try it if you can. 

Taste:          8
Garnish:      7
Ambiance:  8 

Total Bloody Mary Score:29

Monday, April 6, 2020

Jimm's Steakhouse and Pub - Springfield MO

We made a few stops on our way from Ohio to Arizona last fall and one of those was in Springfield Missouri where we parked our camper for a few days while we saw the sights (Yes, there are sights to see in Springfield).  The camp hosts recommended a few places we might like to visit for a bite and one of those was Jimm's Steakhouse and Pub.

The food at Jimms was very good and my wife and I enjoyed our visit there, but we aren't here to talk about the food.  Jimm's take on the Bloody Mary is very much your standard.  I didn't notice anything to set it apart from numerous other Bloody's that I've had at many restaurants.  It had the standard garnish, could possibly have been made with a pre-mix, and it did the trick.

That is not to diminish Jimm's at all in any way, and you SHOULD visit Jimm's if you are looking for a good meal in Springfield for sure.

Taste:           7
Garnish:      7
Ambiance:  8 

Total Bloody Mary Score:28

Monday, March 30, 2020

How much? - The Nugget Saloon - Deadwood, SD

I like my Sunday morning Bloody Mary's, that's a given.  When I'm on vacation and looking for a good place to fill my desire for a breakfast Salad and I see a sign in the window advertising "The best Bloody Mary in Deadwood, SD" I'd find it almost impossible to keep myself from trying it on a normal day leastways a Sunday!

Just look at that picture above.  Look at it again!  That is a huge piece of spicy bacon in this bad boy. The garnish choices in this version were well though out and compliment the drink without adding or taking away too much from the drink itself.

Admittedly, I did not have time to try EVERY Bloody Mary in town, but based on what I experienced in the Nugget, I'd wager their claim is probably correct.   

The price is high at $10, but you do get top shelf liquor and the garnish alone probably costs them 1/4 of that price.  I mean, look t that BACON!  WOW.

Taste:            8
Garnish:       9
Ambiance:  7  (The place was empty, but it was early in the day.)

Total Bloody Mary Score: 31

Monday, March 23, 2020

Broken Yolk Cafe - Temecula CA

Visiting family and looking for a place to have Sunday brunch when we saw the Broken Yolk Cafe in Temecula, CA.  Yes, it's a chain and chains are hit and miss, and even this location was hit or miss when it came to the drink in question. We came to this location 3 times while we were in town and the Boody Mary you see above was the best of them all.

Look at that Garnish!  Look at that rim! I have nothing bad to say about it in the least!

I have not been to many of their locations, but if they all have food as good as this one and Bloody Mary's I might find myself there more often!  Time will tell.

Taste:           7
Garnish:      8
Ambiance:  7  (Clean and neat.  Great Staff!)

Total Bloody Mary Score: 30

Monday, March 16, 2020

Camping and Hiking relief - Carlee's Borrego Springs, CA

While hiking and camping with family in Anza Borrego between X-mas and New Years my Aunt suggested we stop in at Carlee's for lunch and a drink.  Me being me, I ordered the drink pictured above.

Carlee's take on the Bloody Mary is simple.  Not a ton of flash and pizazz, but just a good down to earth simple libation that hit the spot after a day of hiking.  While it won't win any prizes or finish top in my ratings, there is something to be said for it's simplicity.

Borrego Springs doesn't have a lot of things that other towns may have.  There is no McD's, not even a Starbucks or a Subway.  What it does have is residence in the middle of a beautiful area, a simple charm, and exactly what you need without a ton of frills.  Oh, and they have Carlee's, and judging by the size of the crowd there on the day we visited, that is a very good thing to have.

Taste:           7
Garnish:      5
Ambiance:  7 

Total Bloody Mary Score:  25

Monday, March 2, 2020

Big T's - Lawton Michigan

I first went to Big T's in the 90's before I had kids.  I've always loved their food and their beer menu that boasts over 300 beers from all over the world.  After moving out of state, we still find ourselves visiting during every visit and, aside from friends and family, it's my only real reason for coming back to Michigan.

Looking back I never thought I'd see myself ordering a Bloody Mary at Big T's in lieu of some frotsy beverage from the beer menu, but it's become a Sunday brunch staple for me to consume at least one provided I can find one, and Big T's delivers.

Their take on this drink is simple, yet marks all of the boxes of what a good Bloody Mary needs to be.  There is not an over abundance of garnish, but the way the garnish sits in the drink itself adds to the taste and not just the aesthetic.  It's damn tasty and fills my sunday craving when I'm in town.

Presentation: 7
Taste:            8
Garnish:        6
Ambiance:    8

Total Bloody Mary Score:  29

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

The Bloody Mary that started it all...

Years ago, my wife and I were looking for something to get us (more me than her) out of the house on a regular basis.  We were fortunate enough to stumble upon the Sunday brunch at Timber Lodge in Medina Ohio and we've been going every week since when we are not traveling.

The Timber Lodge brunch Bloody Mary is not going to make the top of my list, but it holds a special place for me since it was the reason why I started to drink them in the first place.  At .99 a glass it is probably the least expensive I've had, and I dare say that it is better than some of the more expensive versions of this drink that I've come across.

It's no secret that this beauty is made using a commercial mix as it would be impossible to make it from scratch at the volume and price that it is served at Timber Lodge.  Go into the restaurant any Sunday except holiday's and you'll see one or more on almost every table.  The taste is good, the garnish simple, and the price is unbeatable.

What makes this Bloody Mary special is Timber Lodge itself.  They offer a brunch menu that is unmatched in North East Ohio, with an excellent staff, and a regular menu that is 5 star it is a great place to visit if you have a chance.

Presentation:  6
Taste:             6
Garnish:         5
Ambiance:     9

Total Bloody Mary Score:  26

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Getting Started: The search for the Perfect Bloody Mary

I never used to like Bloody Mary's, I think it was a holdover from my disdain of tomatoes as a kid.  Today, I love tomatoes and I REALLY love a good Bloody Mary.  After tasting many different takes on this drink during our travels around the country I have decided I need a place to record my opinions on them and the places where I've ordered them.  I'll try to post a new one each week