Last CallParty Gras
Bloody Marys for the morning after

What an interesting state of affairs the calendar has presented to us in the first month of the new year.

New Orleans will be celebrating Carnival as usual starting on Twelfth Night, Jan. 6. But this year, almost the entire season will take place in January. Mardi Gras Day is Feb. 5, so the balls, the parades and the impromptu street parties will mostly happen in this month.

Every attendee at Carnival events has a personal favorite beverage that’s traditional or convenient, both yardsticks that determine our celebratory liquid. We’re usually not all in agreement as to what goes best with activities, food, friends or location.
However, we’re in agreement on the “Morning After” beverage. The Bloody Mary, it seems, was practically invented for lifting the eyelids and putting us back on the path of real life, which is certainly different here from most other places.
Ingredients and recipes for this drink are as varied as the throws in Truck Parades, but here is a sturdy Wake-Up-Bloody-Mary recipe from Ralph Brennan’s Redfish Grill, guaranteed to put you in the mood once again for partying the day and night away.

Recipe serves 12 (Everyone has lots of friends at Carnival)
46 oz. Tomato Juice
18 oz. Vodka
1 tsp. Horseradish, or to taste
1 oz. Worcestershire, or to taste
1 tsp. Tabasco
1 tsp. Celery Salt
The juice of 1 small lime
pinch Cardamom*
Salt & Pepper to taste

Mix very well and then chill
Use a medium cocktail glass, filled with ice; add a squeeze of lime and lemon and your favorite garnish. The Red Fish Grill uses spiced green beans and/or pickled okra.

*The pinch of cardamom adds a hearty character to the drink, as well as acting as an accent to the tomato juice.