The 1st of January is Bloody Mary Day.
The tradition of having a Bloody Mary on New Year’s Day goes back to at least the 1970s in the U.S., if not well before.
The 4th of January is suggested by some to be “Tired Bloody Mary Day”, which is vodka in geritol. Bishop, Ian. Calendar Art. Columbus Telegram: Columbus, Nebraska. 25 May 1970. Page 4, col. 1.
See also: Vodka Day
What is a Bloody Mary
A Blood Mary is an alcoholic cocktail made from vodka and tomato juice, seasoned with Tabasco sauce and Worcestershire sauce, and with celery salt on the glass rim. It is still one of the most popular cocktails to come out of the 20th century.
Some people say the reason for Bloody Mary Day being the 1st of January is that it’s a popular home-cure for the hangovers from New Year’s Eve the night before. The theory passed around is that the tomato juice and vegetables settle your stomach, the salt rebalances your electrolytes, and the alcohol serves as the “hair of the dog.” It’s likely, though, that doctors would say fine, but leave the alcohol out…
Bloody Mary Variations
Do you like your Bloody Mary original-style or gussied up with add-ons such as hot peppers, bacon, shrimp, horseradish, pickled green beans, pickled asparagus, or olives?
There are many Bloody Mary variations now. Some use horseradish-flavoured vodka, some use mezcal, some use fancy versions of tomato juice such as a blend of roasted tomatoes and roasted jalapenos.
Some well-known variations on a Bloody Mary include:
- Bloody Pirate or Creole Bloody Mary: uses rum instead of vodka;
- Bloody Maria: tequila instead of vodka;
- Maria Verde: uses tomatillo juice and gin instead of tomato juice and vodka.
Activities for today
For Bloody Mary Day, you could have some friends over and have them make their own Bloody Mary. Lay out a tray of garnishes so they can all customize their drinks. Have some skewers that are long enough for the height of your glasses, for people to affix the garnishes onto. You may wish to serve an appetizer plate of nibblies on the side. If you weren’t out crazy late the night before, you could make it a brunch.
Or, you could go to a bar or order a Bloody Mary there! Maybe the same one you just got home from a few hours ago!
In 1973, a sports writer in Alabama made a reference to Bloody Mary’s being traditional on New Year’s Day:
“Alabama football has long been a household word, and the Tid playing somewhere New Year’s Day as Americana as egg nog and ‘Bloody Maries’ [sic] that day.” — Young, Rick. Grid, Roundball Championships in Tide’s Reach. Montgomery, Alabama: Alabama Journal. Monday, 26 November 1973. Page 12, col. 1.
The earliest print reference that CooksInfo is aware of for a Bloody Mary Day in January being recognized as a commercial practice dates to 1974:
“New Years Day / Bloody Mary Day… Watch the Bowl Games at Pier 23 Club. Bloody Marys… 75 cents.” — Advertisement in: Galveston Daily News. Galveston, Texas. Tuesday morning, 31 December 1974. Page 6, col. 7.
Alarcón, Claudia. 6 Recipes To Make In Celebration Of The Bloody Mary’s 100th Birthday On New Year’s Day. Forbes Magazine. 30 December 2020. Accessed February 2021 at https://www.forbes.com/sites/claudiaalarcon/2021/12/30/6-recipes-to-make-in-celebration-of-the-bloody-marys-100th-birthday-on-new-years-day/?sh=52663fff1dc2
GET OVER YOUR 2020 HANGOVER ON NATIONAL BLOODY MARY DAY: JANUARY 1, 2021. Pasadena Now Magazine. 31 December 2020. Accessed February 2021 at https://www.pasadenanow.com/weekendr/get-over-your-2020-hangover-on-national-bloody-mary-day-january-1-2021/
Got a hangover? Celebrate with National Bloody Mary Day. Fox News Atlanta. 1 January 2021. Accessed February 2021 at https://www.fox5atlanta.com/news/got-a-hangover-celebrate-with-national-bloody-mary-day
Tate, Nikki. Happy Bloody Mary Day, Banff! Taste Magazine. 29 December 2019. Accessed February 2021 at https://www.tastemagazine.ca/victoria-whistler-banff-canmore-dining-blog/2019/12/29/wednesday-bloody-mary-wednesday-exd38
|↑1||Bishop, Ian. Calendar Art. Columbus Telegram: Columbus, Nebraska. 25 May 1970. Page 4, col. 1.|