Toasting March Madness

Need a stiff drink for the Final Four madness? A Bloody Mary recipe that will clearly make your team win (or ease the pain of a loss)

OK, we admit it: We have Final Four fever. And the only cure is… well, more basketball.

And if we’re going to stay inside Saturday watching games, we want to be drinking something good, too. So, naturally, we turned to top mixologist Tony Abou-Ganim, who famously set up the cocktail program at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas when it opened in 1998. He’s slaked the thirst of countless sports fans who flock to the city every year during the NCAA tournament.

What goes best with buzzer-beaters and triple-doubles? Abou-Ganim recommended two recipes from his new book, Vodka Distilled, which was published this winter.

Abou-Ganim suggests starting out with his Bloody Bull. The spin on the Bloody Mary, includes Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, and some beef bouillon — the perfect pairing for a testosterone-fueled contest (not to mention a late brunch).

You deserve a reward if you catch both semi-final matchups, so make Abou-Ganim’s tropical Monkey Shine, which he calls "tall, restorative and refreshing." It combines vodka, Campari, Cointreau, fresh lemon juice and pink guava nectar. We think it tastes like sweet victory.

Click here for the Bloody Bull and Monkey Shine cocktail recipes.

This story was originally published at Toasting March Madness.  For more stories like this join Liquor.com and drink better. Plus, for a limited time get How to Cocktail in 2013, a cocktail recipe book — free! Join now.

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