It was all so simple then. That is, when a Bloody Mary came simply garnished with a celery spear and a wedge of lemon.
These days, many brunchers might think that drink looks a bit naked. Especially when they can get Bloodies topped with an entire garden or, in the case of The Saltbox Restaurant & Bar in Montauk, with a lobster slider, grilled shrimp and bacon.
The so-called "Fat" Mary debuted a few weeks ago, said bar manager Kellen O'Laughlin, and was a collaborative effort between the staff. While it starts with the requisite components (tomato juice, Spring44 vodka, black pepper, horseradish, celery salt and Worcestershire sauce) the drink comes bearing an ornate fascinator of lobster salad on a mini-brioche bun and a jumbo shrimp, balanced on a complex network of skewers. A few pieces of bacon are thrown in for good measure.
The Fat Mary costs $27 and is a serious upgrade on The Saltbox's $13 classic Bloody Mary. But it can do double service as a meal and a drink, points out O'Laughlin. "We sell a lot of them in the morning, but some people come in at 8 p.m. for them," he said."Some couples come in and get one regular Bloody and one of the Fat Marys, and split them."
In terms of topping particulars, O'Laughlin said the lobster slider is "super classic," made with mayo, Old Bay seasoning and lettuce, while the giant shrimp is "lightly seasoned and done on the grill." An intricate crisscross of skewers at the top of the glass keep the slider from, well, sliding into the tomato-ey depths below.
For all of its presence, the Fat Mary has so far not outsold The Saltbox's most popular cocktail, the Drunken Yogi, made with mango-infused vodka, pineapple juice and crème de coconut.
The Saltbox, 99 Carl Fisher Plaza, Montauk, 631-238-5727, mtksaltbox.com