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Balsamic Bloody Mary

Balsamic vinegar adds its characteristic pungent sweetness to this popular brunch cocktail. For the best flavor, choose a good-quality, multifiltered vodka.

Ingredients:

  • Ice cubes as needed 
  • 1 cup vodka  
  • 2 cups tomato juice  
  • 1 1/2 Tbs. balsamic vinegar  
  • 1 Tbs. prepared horseradish  
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce  
  • 4 dashes of Tabasco sauce  
  • 1/4 tsp. celery salt  
  • Juice of 2 limes  
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste 
  • 4 cherry tomatoes  
  • 4 green chilies  

Directions:

Fill 4 tall glasses with ice.

In a large pitcher, combine the vodka, tomato juice, vinegar, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, celery salt, lime juice and ice. Stir well to combine and season with pepper. Pour into the ice-filled glasses and garnish each glass with a cherry tomato and a chili speared on a cocktail pick. Serve immediately. Serves 4.

Variation: To make a Jalapeño Bloody Mary, substitute the vodka with a spicy flavored vodka, such as jalapeño vodka or pepper vodka. Omit the balsamic vinegar, cherry tomatoes and green chilies. Garnish with a jalapeño speared on a cocktail pick.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Essentials of Breakfast and Brunch, by Georgeanne Brennan, Elinor Klivans, Jordan Mackay and Charles Pierce (Oxmoor House, 2007).