Why Ordering A Bloody Mary After Brunch Is A Risky Choice

If you're looking for a little hair of the dog after a big night out, there is perhaps no ritual more satisfying than ordering a Bloody Mary at brunch. Sure, you could get another boozy cocktail like a mimosa, bellini, or paloma, but between the Tabasco sauce, tomato juice, lemon juice, celery salt, and vodka, a Bloody Mary packs a flavorful punch while hydrating you at the same time. Depending on where you're going for brunch, you may also get some fancy extras in your drink, like olives, pickled vegetables, or even mini cheeseburgers.

Drinking a Bloody Mary is a whole experience in itself, so why not try to replicate it at dinnertime? Besides the fact that a tomato and lemon cocktail may not pair so well with your evening steak or pasta order, there's a good reason to keep your Bloody Mary consumption to brunch time only. In fact, there are a few drinks you probably won't want to get at a bar, including a Long Island iced tea, mojito, and New York sour, but ordering a Bloody Mary after brunch may be a particularly risky decision.

Bloody Mary ingredients usually aren't ready for nighttime orders

Bloody Marys may top some bartenders' lists of least favorite drinks to make, due to the time they take and all the different garnishes involved. But the real reason you should stick to consuming these potent beverages at brunch is that bartenders are typically not set up to make them at night. Bloody Marys usually aren't on dinnertime or late-night cocktail menus, meaning the ingredients have been put away after brunch. As New York City beverage director Sean McClure told Travel + Leisure, "The mise en place is probably not even on the bar if you're ordering this outside of brunch hours."

This doesn't necessarily mean the bartender will turn you down — but you may end up with a half-heartedly made Bloody Mary or worse, one with a less-than-flavorful pre-made mix. And many bartenders aren't in favor of going against the grain. "Drinking a Bloody Mary at night is akin to ordering a Negroni at 10 a.m. with your eggs and toast," InsideHook explained. "It's just chaotic behavior." 

What you can experiment with, however, is trying a tomato-based cocktail if it's already on the menu. Many bartenders are transforming Bloody Mary's into nighttime drinks, although they have a unique spin with ingredients like chile brine, aquavit, and sake. But in general, do yourself and your bartenders a favor and stick to a classic nighttime drink order like a martini, Old Fashioned, or gin and tonic.