Every Christmas, my family goes to the house of our closest family friends for a brunch filled with Eggs Benedict, cinnamon rolls, fruit salad, and everyone’s favorite staple — the Bloody Mary. Garnished with a stalk of celery and a seasoned rim, it’s the perfect nap-inducing cocktail to incapacitate me for when I get home and don’t feel like watching the 2 p.m. NBA game. The beauty of these Christmas Cocktails is that they’re simple enough that making them isn’t a production, but it’s still an event and tradition that we all covet and look forward to.
Somewhere along the way, the world changed the Bloody Mary from a cocktail into a meal in and of itself. It became acceptable to top our Bloodies with more than just a stalk of celery or a cocktail pick with a spear of lemon, an olive, or some type of pickled veggie. Pieces of bacon. Beef jerky sticks. Slices of pizza. Entire fucking cheeseburgers.
I’m not trying to have craft mixologists with man buns sticking out of their Pharrell Dudley Do-Right hats load my Bloody with carbs and cured meats. I’m trying to catch an early morning buzz with one of the few cocktails acceptable to take down before noon. There’s nothing respectable about this new socially acceptable bar standard. Frankly, it’s appalling.
It would be one thing if restaurants had Bloody & Burger Brunch Specials or a Make-Your-Own Pizza and Bloody Bar. But instead of offering a valid meal, bartenders load these things with pre-made sliders that are comparable to the White Castle microwavable burgers. And there’s probably a $5.00 up-charge just because they’re trying to get rid of their expired beef on a Sunday morning before Sysco shows up the following Monday with a whole new batch of low-end meat.
These days, major and minor league ballparks alike try to one-up each other with Philly Cheesesteak-stuffed nachos or whatever fucking way is the most trendy to shove calories down their season ticket holder’s throats. But I’m not trying to trip over the garnishments falling off of my drink as I try to find the seat that I overpaid for. The gluttony and novelty of this fad wore thin on me the second I saw the first Valencia-filtered Instagram taken from someone’s hungover bar seat.
Sure, if you want to go to a Guy Fieri’s Go Fuck Yourself Grille to get the Buffalo Bloody Mary topped with a dozen boneless wings and filled with blue cheese-infused vodka, be my guest. But if it doesn’t fit inside a jar, it shouldn’t fit inside my Bloody Mary. If I wanted there to be a side of onion rings, or a burrito to go with my Bloody Mary, I’d order a side of onion rings or a burrito. But instead, I casually order one when I’m feeling dusty on a Saturday and the thing arrives at the table punching me in the face with all its embellishments.
If there’s going to be a reason for the rest of the world to hate us, let’s make it for something other than people with 44″ waists drinking 2,000 calorie cocktails. Let’s make it because we win the World Cup or avoid bankruptcy (sup, Greece?). But until one of those things happens, just know that I’m going to unfollow you if you post a photo of your bloody that’s covered in chicken and waffles. .
Image via YouTube