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Cocktail Recipe

Red Snapper (a.k.a. Bloody Mary)

King Cole Bar

Red Snapper (a.k.a. Bloody Mary)

King Cole Bar

The Bloody Mary as we know it today was actually perfected at the St. Regis New York’s King Cole Bar, in 1934, by bartender Fernand Petiot. Serge Obolensky, a well-known bon vivant whose penchant for vodka was in keeping with his aristocratic Russian background, asked Petiot to make the tomatoey vodka cocktail he had in Paris. The formula was spiced up with salt, pepper, lemon, and Worcestershire Sauce.

To drink vodka with tomato juice was actually rather unbecoming for the well-heeled patrons of the hotel, so Petiot cleverly named his version the Red Snapper. The idea clearly struck a chord: the beloved King Cole recently sold its millionth Red Snapper—which remains the signature drink.

While the name was changed, the spicy drink has been imitated and adapted endlessly by others throughout the years. The original recipe is still served in the King Cole Bar today, where it’s still one of the most-ordered cocktails on the menu. (from Carole Dixon)

Serves 1 cocktail


1-ounce vodka
2 ounces Tomato juice
1 dash lemon juice
2 dashes of celery salt
2 dashes of black pepper
2 dashes of cayenne pepper
3 dashes of Worcestershire sauce


Combine all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously.
Strain into an ice-filled glass and garnish with a lemon wedge.

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