Bloody Mary Punch (with Lovage)
The classical description of punch is the balance of the sour, sweet, strong and weak elements - often also being aromatized. Beginning in the early 1700's, appended punches were made in England with milk or succulent (non-sour) fruit juices in place of some or all of the water. In the 1940's an appended punch we call the Bloody Mary was created.
I don't try to fit a slice of pizza or some garlic bread into this drink. For this drink, I prefer a more-refined look. I use lovage (Levisticum officinale). It has a strong celery-like scent with notes of cucumber. Lovage was a favorite of the ancient Greeks and Romans, who used it extensively when roasting meat - and in sauces and wine-based tipples. I grow lovage in the Elemental Mixology farm mostly for use in this one drink.
Set out 103/4 fl-oz. punch tumbler (Stölzle catalog number 350-00-13).
Trim a stalk of lovage to fit the punch tumbler and reserve it as garniture. If lovage is not available, a stalk of celery will do.
Into a metal mixing tumbler ('shaker tin') goes:
- 1 barspoon [1/2 tsp.|2.5 ml.] of chilie pepper sauce (I use Cholula Original)
- 1 scruplespoon [1/4 tsp.|1.25 ml.] of sea salt
- 1 scruplespoon [1/4 tsp.|1.25 ml.] of celery salt
- 1 barspoon [1/2 tsp.|2.5 ml.] of ground black pepper
- 1/2 pony [1/2 fl-oz.|15 ml.] of lemon juice
- 1 barspoon [1/2 tsp.|2.5 ml.] of Worchestershire sauce (the molasses and sugar are the sweet element in this punch)
- 1 jigger [2 ponies/fl-oz.|60 ml.] of plain vodka (100º proof is my preference here)
- 1 jigger [2 ponies/fl-oz.|60 ml.] of pureed plum tomatoes (I puree a can of San Marzano tomatoes)
Into the punch tumbler goes:
- 4 cubes [~4 fl-oz.|120 ml.] of service ice (true cubes of about 1 fl-oz. volume, each)
To the other ingredients already in the metal mixing tumbler, add:
- 3/4 fill the metal mixing tumbler with method ice or cracked ice [about 1/2 fl-oz. cubes]
Seal the mixing tumbler with a metal mixing cap ('cheater tin') and gently 'roll' the drink by turning it slowly end-over-end for three-or-four rotations to mix and chill/dilute without over-aerating and dullingthe flavor of the tomato puree.
Hawthorne-strain this into the punch tumbler already containing the service ice.
The fill should be perfect if the appropriate ice and service vessel are used.
Insert a glass drinking straw. Garnish with:
- 1 stalk of lovage or celery (as previously reserved)
Serve (or drink).