For most brunch-goers, the weekend eat-a-thon isn’t complete without a Bloody Mary or two (or three!)
Brunch hotspot tupelo on Park City, Utah’s historic Main Street has elevated the Bloody Mary experience, putting diners in control of their Bloody Mary mixology during its Sunday brunch, served 11:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Patrons are served an unadorned glass of tomato juice and vodka for $12 and are then led to one of the most expansive — and non-gimmicky — Bloody Mary bars ever experienced.
At a time when the Bloody Mary trend is toward exaggeration (think the MasterPiece at Sobelman’s in Milwaukee that is adorned with shrimp, a cherry tomato, a lemon wedges, Polish sausage, cheese, pickled asparagus, scallion stalks, pickle, pickled mushroom, onion, Brussels sprouts, celery stalks, and a skewered bacon cheeseburger), tupelo prides itself on stocking its Bloody Mary bar with garnishes that range from familiar to adventurous while still keeping it classy.
For guests who fear they might go overboard, that event is unlikely because the bar staff will guide the way. “You come to us and you tell us what your palate is like, and we will develop your drink to your palate,” said Marcel Paramore, Bar Manager.
During a recent Sunday brunch at tupelo — which is named after the tupelo trees whose blossoms produce honey and reflects Chef/Owner Matt Harris’ adaptation of his Southern roots to the Beehive State — Paramore accompanied The Daily Meal to the Bloody Mary bar to show us how to season and garnish this zesty drink without being overwhelmed.
“Don’t mix spice with spice or pickle with pickle,” cautioned Paramore, motioning toward a dozen glass bottles of spices and sauces that flanked one side of the bar and the mason jars of pickled okra and cucumbers pickled with hot peppers that anchored the center of the expansive bar, which could easily be mistaken for a buffet.
Tupelo’s Bloody Mary bar is brimming with artisanal sauces, produce, meats, and spices to suit any palate, from mellow to spicy. The bar’s contents are selected in the same way that Harris (who has worked in the kitchens of Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Kevin Rathbun, and Pano Karatassos) sources artisanal ingredients to create his globally inspired cuisine.
From standard Bloody Mary garnishes such as green olives, lemons, limes, blue cheese, onions, salt, Black Sea salt, and celery salt, to the unusual like grilled pancetta, pickled Shishito peppers, and kimchi, there is something for everyone. Drinkers can intensify their bloodies with some heat like Pickapeppa Sauce, Dave’s Ghost Pepper Sauce, Cholula hot sauce, Blair’s Death Sauce, Double Bastard Hot Sauce, TABASCO, paprika, and bacon salt, and top them off with skewers of blue cheese-stuffed olives, pancetta, lemon, lime, and cornichons.
“If there’s anything else, you’d like, we’ll get it for you,” said Paramore.
No matter how visitors choose to embellish their Bloody Marys, the refreshing cocktail pairs well with brunch starters like roasted mushroom toast with farmer’s cheese and sunnyside up egg; house-made ricotta with olive oil bread, pickled berries, and basil oil; mains like “chicken & biscuits” with crispy chicken, open faced kimchi biscuit, scrambled eggs, and pepper gravy; and the buttermilk waffle with apricots, lemon curd, and whipped cream.