Your Guide to the Best Bloody Marys in Minnesota by Local Bloody Mary ExpertsEdit Post
Contributed by on Oct 03, 2019
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The Best Bloody Marys in Minnesota, by Bloody Mary Experts from Minnesota
Written by Liz McCray of Bloody Mary Obsessed
Who here believes all bloody marys should come with a beer back (or for Minnesota purposes, a snit)? I don’t miss the cold in Minnesota, but I certainly miss my bloody marys coming with a beer back, because who doesn’t want more alcohol with their alcohol? During my time living in Minnesota and my travels back for visits and judging the Bloody Mary Festival, I’ve had some amazing bloody marys in the land of 10,000 lakes! Minnesota and the Midwest in general, really know how to bloody mary!
Although I’ve had many bloody marys from Minnesota, it’s a vast state and great bloody marys are on every corner! So, I called on some of my friends who are professional bloody mary drinkers from the state to weigh in on this guide by picking their top 3-4 bloody marys. We wanted to share with you the creme de la creme of bloody marys from all over Minnesota! This guide to the best bloody marys in Minnesota comes from true bloody mary aficionados and experts!
From Duluth to Minnetonka, Saint Paul to Minneapolis, our experts have got you covered. In this guide of the best bloody marys of Minnesota you’ll find Thai basil bloody marys, build your own bloody mary bars, jalapeño infused vodka and you guessed it, a whole lot of beer snits!
I think we can all agree Renee is the Minnesota and Wisconsin queen of bloody marys! With over 11,000 bloody mary fans on Instagram, amassed by years of documenting her bloody mary adventures, the guide to the best bloody marys of Minnesota would not be complete without her! Renee is a true aficionado in every sense and has traveled all over the country to judge bloody mary competitions. I’m so thankful this savory red cocktail has brought us together and she is my bloody mary sista from another mista! A frequenter to the northern cities, Renee’s top bloody mary picks come from north of the Twin Cities!
“I have LOVED the bloody mary at Zeitgeist since the first sip. House made bloody mix, New Amsterdam vodka, pickle and an olive and served with a local snit. It has a refreshingly unique flavor to it (cumin maybe…?) that I can’t get enough of. In a world of bloody marys, where loading up on horseradish is the “unique” flavor, the bloody mary at Zeitgeist truly is one of a kind. I also very much love that this café is truly a community-based restaurant, making a commitment to buy from local farmers and supporting local artists.”
“Although the Boat Club uses a bottled bloody mary mix, it’s one of my favorite bloody marys in Minnesota, and pairs perfectly with their Lobster Bloody Mary; Smirnoff Vodka, Miss Mary's Bloody Mary Mix, petite lobster tail, Sriracha bacon, dill havarti, filthy pickle, celery, lemon, and a beer snit. The best thing about this bloody mary, besides the lobster obviously, is that it is available all day, every day, not just during brunch hours. The Lobster Bloody Mary currently is priced at $20 and for an additional $1, you can add their house infused vodka. For only $8, you can get their regular bloody mary, which leaves out the lobster tail, bacon and cheese. I love the Boat Club Restaurant, as it’s a great destination if you’re looking for some seafood, which is ALWAYS a great pairing with a bloody mary!”
“Doc’s, located right off the Sturgeon Lake exit on I-35 is a bloody mary destination. This is the place you go to when you want the outrageous bloody mary with all the fixin’s..too many to list! The drink underneath all of the goodies is just as stellar, and they make their mix in house. The last time I stopped by Doc’s, you could have your pick of two different types of Ultimate Bloody’s, one of which comes with a ham and cheese sandwich, or one that comes with a rib. Your quintessential country bar and grill, Doc’s boasts their “World Famous Bloody Mary’s” on billboards when you’re driving “up north.” It’s a can’t-miss bloody mary in Minnesota for aficionados. “
“Lake Avenue definitely wins with their house garlic and onion infused vodka! This in combination with their delicious house made bloody mary mix is reason enough to visit Lake Avenue. An additional bloody mary, Mary’s by the Sea bloody mary, with basil-infused vodka, cucumber liqueur, Clamato juice, celery stalk is one of the most innovative and unique bloody mary in Minnesota. On top of their amazing bloody marys, their food is a delicious dream that typically isn’t found in that part of Minnesota, where hearty, meat and potato dishes are still king!”
I recently “met”, Michele over the last few months on this little app called Instagram and we instantly became fans of each other! Any time she posts about bloody marys and brunch she tags me and anytime I post anything to do with Minnesota or BACON I tag her! A food blogger, writer, photographer and fellow judge of the Bloody Mary Festival, Michele knows Minnesota food and drink and bloody marys like the back of her hand, contributing for many popular Minnesota publications. So, of course we had to have her contribute to the best bloody marys of Minnesota guide! Her motto is, “Round here we don’t apologize for our use of bacon, butter or booze. Ever. Food doesn’t have to be fancy to be fabulous, but it should be celebrated every day!” We couldn’t agree more Michele. Michele’s top picks come from west of the cities where she resides.
“Copper Cow’s SKOL Bloody Mary is DILL-icious! Copper Cow uses a house made bloody mary mix (natch!) and gamble ode dill aquavit. Simple. The Skol Bloody Mary is a petite bloody served in a mason jar, rimmed with citrus salts and garnished with dill havarti and sausage, and a big tuft of fresh dill. It's light and bright, and SO delish! Copper Cow is famous for their crafty burgers and boozy shakes, but their shared plates (we always get the Charcuterie Board) side dishes and salads are not to be missed!”
Liz weighing in here….Copper Cow is the sister restaurant to Copper Hen in Minneapolis and their cupcake topped Copper Hen Bloody and spicy Bloody Hell are made with the same house mix and also deserve a spot in the guide of the best bloody marys in Minnesota!
“My all-around fave - hands down! LOVE their perfectly-balanced house made mix and their all-out Sunday Funday Build-Your-Own Bloody Bar. It’s a frequently refreshed three table spread with house recipe chicken wings, fried (Ellsworth!) cheese curds, spicy sausages, and everything you could possibly imagine skewering, dipping and drizzling on or in a bloody. Garage Bar & Bowl is a wonderfully renovated family-owned restaurant that’s just under a year old. They make almost everything they serve in-house, and source the rest locally, and they’re winning hearts (and taste buds) left and right! Garage Bar & Bowl were the winners of the 2019 Bloody Mary Festival here in St. Paul, MN!”
“Because some like it hot! Jalapeño infused vodka, spicy (or non-spicy, if you prefer) homemade bloody mary mix, and a “skewer of snacks” with Gold Nugget Amber snit. Yesssssss!!! The spicy bloodies have a good amount of heat, making them sublimely sippable over a long, lazy weekend brunch/lunch (although The Nug will serve bloodies any time). Gold Nugget also serves up some incredibly good burgers – including an “adventurous” weekly Burger Battle – in addition to seasonal dishes, sandwiches, fries, and shared plates. The Gold Nugget was also winners of the 2019 Bloody Mary Festival.”
“Ike’s "Weekender" Bloody Mary is the stuff of local legend with plenty of classic horseradish kick! You can’t help but get happy when it arrives at your table because you know “everything’s gonna be alright!” The Weekender Hand Crafted Bloody Mary - 20 oz. of seasoned tomato juice and Svedka vodka garnished with a celery stalk, jalabeno, lime, and skewers of pepperoncini, black olive, chilled shrimp, American cheese, pickled mushroom, and a spicy smoked beef stick. Ike’s Minnetonka is filled with old school charm and a killer menu featuring everything from surf & turf to salads, shared plates, burgers & sandwiches, and everything in between.”
Much like Michele and I, Sherri and I met through our love of bloody marys and Instagram! Sherri eats and drinks her way through Minnesota and always has her adorable dog Truman along for the ride! Sherri says, “we spoil the beauty of the moment by wishing for something else” and we totally agree, except when we eat somewhere and there’s no bloody mary on the menu! Sherri’s feed is stunning and she shares her gorgeous home, family, and bloody mary adventures on her stories with her followers. I’m obsessed! A resident of Saint Paul, Sherri’s picks come from the Twin Cities!
“Located in my neighborhood, St. Paul, MN, this is a consistent go-to for brunch after hitting the St Paul Farmers Market, or for a “I’m going to justify this no matter what” “I can’t not order that burger!” ever-famous ‘Cheeseburger’. Yup... that is the tamed down menu name for a burger experience that leaves you breathless! Pair it with their bloody mary and you’re in perfect business! The Saint Dinette bloody mary is a cross between a little sweet, and a little savory. Light enough to allow yourself two instead of just one, guaranteed not to ruin your brunch appetite! The garnish gets me every time.... a tiny everything bagel thoughtfully made in-house by Saint Dinettes own chef Adam Eaton. Let's not forget the Dilly Beans, lemon wedge and olive. Its pretty perfect, any way you look at it!”
“Located on the well-traveled “Eat Street” in Minneapolis, Eat Street Social places an emphasis on local ingredients for their cuisine and outrageously excellent craft cocktails. Eat Street Social bloody mary is served with a beautiful snit - a vintage cut glass punch cup filled with a local St. Paul beer, 'Wheat Stone Ridge' from Tin Whiskers. The mix is complex...too many ingredients to list, as per ESS. But the prominent base ingredients consist of both tomatillo and roasted poblanos with Bourbon barrel aged Worcestershire. All that goodness is garnished with a delightfully savory hunk of their house made jerky, olive, and a pickle spear.”
“Located in St Paul, MN (on what I like to refer to as 'Eat Street, St Paul" Selby Avenue) Happy Gnome is an award winning gastropub specializing in craft beer, whiskey, scotch and a food menu that ticks all the Midwestern taste boxes! There's a good reason they call it "Gnome Sweet Gnome." This one stole the show (again) at the Bloody Mary Fest - Twin Cities! Crafted with their delicious small batch, Thai basil mix, that is now being bottled and distributed, Love Joy Bloody Mary Mix, the mix is vegan and gluten free! Happy Gnome’s bloody mary offers the perfect combination of heat and savory spices. And that color?! Nothing bad about it any of it! Happy Gnome offers a build your own bloody bar during their Sunday brunch too. One that you won't want to miss!”
Although she might be the youngest contributor to the guide of the best bloody marys in Minnesota, Arazue is a seasoned bloody mary vet. I was fortunate enough to meet her last year while judging the Bloody Mary Festival in Saint Paul, but we had already connected months before via Instagram. Arazue is a “bloody mary enthusiast drinking (and featuring) bloodys the great state of Minnesota has to offer.” We love all her bloody adventures and that she shares other peoples adventures with her audience! Arazue’s picks are all from the Twin Cities and truly are unique and quirky!
“Green bloody marys aren’t as well known as traditional red ones, but that's doesn't hold true at Burch Steak. They have an amazing tomatillo bloody that I dream about. Burch Steak’s Tomatillo Bloody Mary has cucumber vodka with spicy tomatillo juice and it goes down so easy. It’s incredibly refreshing and light. Burch’s Tomatillo Bloody Mary comes with a garnish stick that has cheese, sausage, pickles, and an olive. If you’re not feeling up for a green bloody mary, Burch has 4 different variations of bloody marys. Burch’s grass-fed prime cuts, wood-fired pizza and savory brunch items make it a frequent spot for Minnesota athletes. “
“Finnish Bistro’s house bloody is a sake bloody with their house made bloody mary mix which includes olive juice. I don't normally love sake bloodys, but this one is goooooood, and I love a bloody mary with a great seasoned mix. What adds to the fun of this bloody is their 3 different skewer options you can pick from for ultimate garnishes. You can get one with a grilled cheese sandwich, or salami and cheese and sausage, or lox and cheese and various meats. A neighborhood gathering place for European cuisine, Finnish Bistros pays homage to Minnesota’s nordic roots.”
“Harriet's Inn, your classic neighborhood pub now with a full bar, gives you the choice between the old sake bloody mary or a vodka bloody mary. Harriet’s bloody mary is on the heartier side, but I think it has a great flavor with different spices and seasonings without being too spicy. In true Midwest form, it comes with a Miller High Life pony as a beer back and is garnished with a pepperoni stick, pickle, olive and a lime wedge. An eclectic brunch menu that boasts Mexican dishes such as Huevos Rancheros and American favorites like the Beer Cheese Lucy Burger it’s the perfect spot for a laid-back brunch with your neighbors!
I’ve always loved tomatoes from my head down to-ma-toes, so it was a natural progression as I got older to become obsessed with bloody marys. I’m the fierce leader of the BrunchFaced community and invite you to get BrunchFaced; under the influence of brunch! I currently live in sunny SoCal but I’m a former resident of Minnesota where my husband is from! I still have friends and family residing there so I travel back from time to time! I enlisted my fellow bloody aficionados who live in the area to help me complete my guide to the best bloody marys in Minnesota!
Martina’s bloody mary is as fiery in color as it is in taste. This sizzling, spicy bloody is coming in hot. Although spicy and bold, the bloody mary also has a tangy and salty flavor that soothes your insides after the initial burst of heat. Martina’s bloody is rimmed with Cyprus Flake Salt; a Mediterranean salt that is probably the most delicious rim I’ve ever had! I enjoyed the bloody so much I decided to order a second one! Wood-fired dishes including the charred Brussels sprouts salad and charred avocado wheatgrass bruschetta make for delicious brunch fare at Martina.
The Bloody Russian from Moscow on the Hill is made with Referent Horseradish Vodka and a house made bloody mary mix. A potent mix, it will make your eyes water a tad. The flavor is as bold as the name sounds, but in this case that means its perfect for a pesky hangover. Moscow’s house made mix is chalk full of spices (that were clearly visible in the glass) giving it a robust flavor with a punch of horseradish from the vodka. In Minnesota form, the Bloody Russian is served with a chaser of beer. The skewer is simple with lemon, lime and a pickle because this tantalizing bloody doesn’t need a fancy skewer to hide behind. For weekend brunch Moscow has a bottomless bloody mary bar, although I’m not sure if it’s the same bloody as the Bloody Russian, I got mine for happy hour!
PC: Moscow on the Hill
You know I couldn’t do a guide to the best bloody marys of Minnesota without mentioning the 36 foot long Jacked Up build your own bloody mary bar from Hell’s Kitchen! A mug of vodka and house made mix by Mitch; a mix with a slither of heat and bite contrasted by the sweetness of the ginger puree. Once you mug arrives at your table you’re ready to descend on one of the, if not the biggest BYOBMB’s I’ve ever seen! Bloody Mary mix add ons include a plethora of salts, brines, seasonings and over 200 hot sauces! Load up on multiple vegetables and an array of cheeses. Jack it up even more with beef sticks, different flavored chicken wings, sausage bread cubes, hard boiled eggs and bacon. The Jacked Up Bloody Mary Bar is a must for any bloody mary bucket listers! If you still have room to eat afterwards nosh on a Caramel Pecan Roll or the Bison Benedict.