While the history of the Bloody Mary cocktail is not clear, one thing is certain: it is one of the most beloved.
More often than not, people make this favorite alcoholic breakfast beverage more complicated than it should be. All you really need is your favorite Bloody Mary mix (or tomato juice), cocktail sauce and vodka. The secret, however, is in the cocktail sauce — fresh far exceeds bottled any day ... unless of course it is St. Elmo’s Cocktail Sauce.
The St. Elmo’s Cocktail Sauce recipe has been a secret for years, however, we think that we have solved the mystery. The tip to cracking this code came from one of the chefs at St. Elmo’s Steakhouse, who said, “just keep it simple ... only four ingredients.” Those four are fresh ground horseradish, ketchup, salt and pepper; and since St. Elmo’s has been in downtown Indianapolis for more than 100 years, what other ketchup could have the founders used other than Heinz?
So, here is our best educated guess as to the sauce recipe, plus a recipe for the classic Bloody Mary. Remember, when making the sauce, as far as proportions go, add significantly more horseradish than ketchup.
St. Elmo’s Cocktail Sauce
1 tablespoon fresh-graded horseradish
1/2 tablespoon ketchup
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Mix all ingredients together until well blended.
Classic Bloody Mary
1 ounce vodka
3 ounces tomato juice
Blend vodka, tomato juice and cocktail sauce. Pour into highball glass with lime and ice.
Garnish with olive and shrimp.
Drink recipe courtesy of mixologist Zach Wilks