Anatomy of a Classic

The Cochon Bloody Mary

Yeilds ½ gallon (10–12 servings)

New Orleans chef Donald Link shares his Bloody Mary secrets

Photo: Terry Kuzniar

You can order a Bloody Mary anywhere in the country, but you can get a good one only in the South. Maybe it’s the complexity of the spices; maybe it’s the peppery heat. But I think we’re better at making them because there’s more going on that requires daytime drinking: football games, tailgating, the long, leisurely brunch. And here in New Orleans, we have the best reason for morning drinking—the night before. So let’s not forget the Bloody Mary’s hair-of-the-dog power; it comes in handy.

At Cochon, I start with a V8 base and add some pork jus for flavor and body. The pork jus is a reduction of pork stock that we use to add character and depth to the drink, kind of like a Bloody Bull that uses beef stock. But then it’s all about the spice: pepper, grainy mustard, fresh lemon juice. And snacks—I gotta have my snacks. My Bloody Mary has to have pickled okra and a long stem of celery, preferably a crisp inner stalk with tender light green leaves. The glass should mirror that natural silhouette: tall with straight sides. Not only does the shape help the drink stay properly mixed, you can fit a lot of ice cubes in there. It’s hot down here.


    • 1 can V8 (46 oz.)

    • 2 tbsp. finely ground pepper

    • 2 tbsp. whole grain mustard

    • 1 tbsp. garlic powder

    • 1.5 oz. pork broth

    • 1.5 oz. lime juice

    • 2.5 oz. lemon juice

    • 3.5 oz. hot sauce (preferably Crystal brand)

    • 2 oz. green hot sauce

    • 1.5 oz. red wine vinegar

    • 1 oz. olive juice

    • 1.5 oz. okra juice (the brine from a jar of pickled okra)

    • Vodka of choice


  1. Combine everything in a pitcher – except vodka – and stir. To serve: Fill glass with ice. Add about 2 ounces of vodka. Fill with Bloody Mary mixture. Stir, garnish, and serve. The mixture can be made ahead of time and kept in a sealed pitcher for up to a week.

Recipe from chef Donald Link of Herbsaint and Cochon in New Orleans, Louisiana