Happy 100th, bloody Mary: Paris celebrates cocktail's birthday

Harry's Bar in Paris celebrates the 100th Birthday of the Bloody Mary, a vodka-tomato juice cocktail thought to have originated at this iconic watering hole in 1921.

Happy 100th, bloody Mary: Paris celebrates cocktail's birthday

This week's centenary events provide a welcome relief from winter gloom, and concerns about the omicron version of the coronavirus.

As foreign tourists arrive to Harry's Bar, they are carefully checking their COVID-19 health certificates.

According to Harry's history, Fernand Petiot, a bartender, invented the cocktail. The recipe was published in Harry's ABC of Cocktails in 1921. An estimated 12,000 bloody marys are served annually at the bar.

Bartender Dante Agnelli stated, "It's an iconic drink." He also demonstrated the mixology behind this drink, ingredient by ingredient: Tabasco sauce and Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper, Tabasco, Tabasco, Tabasco, lemon juice and vodka.

Agnelli stood at the counter, where Petiot had first performed the ritual 100 years earlier. This was at the dawning of the roaring 20s.

Harry's Bar will host a party on Thursday night, despite concerns over the spread of the omicron version of the coronavirus across Europe and an increase in virus infections in France.

Franz-Arthur MacElhone is a great-grandson to bar founder Harry MacElhone. He said that the celebration will follow government regulations. Patrons around the globe will have their health checked and hand sanitizers distributed. Bar staff will also wear masks.

The French government has expanded the number of places where passes are required in recent days. This includes all restaurants as well as a growing list of events and venues. You must have proof of full vaccination and a negative virus test no more than 24 hours old or recent recovery from COVID-19 in order to get one.

Although the French government has closed nightclubs, tightened social distancing and tightened security measures, it is still trying to avoid another lockdown.

The only change in the bar is the health protocol. It was located on New York's 7th Avenue.

The timeless decor of Harry's is a comforting fixture in a time when there was uncertainty because of the pandemic.

Ihab Hassan (61), a retired Egyptian businessman who has been a regular at this bar since the 1970s, said, "Once you enter, you forget all your worries."

Hassan said that the coronavirus pandemic did not stop him from enjoying his Parisian pastime. He was able to enjoy a bloody mary at the counter.

Jay Sing from America and Renee DiGeorgio from Australia sat next to Hassan. An Associated Press reporter asked them their thoughts about the cocktail, and they admitted that they had already had a few.

DiGeorgio, 42 years old, works in the mining sector and is based out of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

He said, "This is a really good bloody mary." "It's the first time that I've ever drunk bloody marys when the sun is down!"

All three men stated that they had taken all necessary precautions to ensure safety and compliance with anti-virus regulations.

Sing, a 28-year-old tech worker from New York, said that he has four vaccines. "I look like Iron Man." "It's impossible to touch me!"

MacElhone, great-grandson and founder of the bar, shared different stories about how bloody mary got its name.

"Petiot stated it was for a dancer he loved called Mary," MacElhone explained.

MacElhone stated that she used to work at a Chicago location called the Bucket of Blood. However, this is only one explanation for the drink's name.

MacElhone stated that there are many others.

He said, "There's an Hemingway story." It was right before he got married and he was dating Mary.

According to the story, Hemingway requested a drink with juice and he didn't want alcohol on his breath.

MacElhone stated that tomato juice was added and that he was saying "bloody Mary" while he was sipping it.

Updated Date: 15 December 2021, 13:04

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