You don't normally think of Mario Batali as a mixologist, but I came across this Balsamic Bloody Mary recipe in his cool little book Holiday Food. If you're throwing a New Year's brunch or party this weekend, make a pitcher of these and offer one to every guest that walks in the door. You'll kick-start your party in a major way.
- 24 ounces vegetable cocktail, like V-8
- 1 teaspoon celery seed
- 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
- Juice of 1 lime
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 3 tablespoons freshly grated horseradish
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- Tabasco sauce, to taste
- 8 ounces vodka
- 4 celery stalks with leaves
- 1 lime, cut into wedges
- 4 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
In a large pitcher, combine the vegetable cocktail, celery seed, pepper, citrus juices, 2 tablespoons of the horseradish, the Worcestershire sauce, and Tabasco and stir well to combine. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Fill 4 glasses with ice. Add 2 ounces of vodka to each and fill three-quarters full with the vegetable cocktail. Sprinkle with the remaining horseradish, place 1 celery stalk in each glass, and squeeze a lime wedge over each glass before dropping the wedge into the glass. Float a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar on the top of each drink and serve.