Chicago’s Best Bloody Marys 2012

2012. What a bloody good year.

Thanks for drinking along with us. And thanks for giving us an excuse to indulge our obsession on the weekends. We are doing this for your stomachs and ours.

You’re probably sick of “Best of” lists by now. We don’t care. We’re taking this opportunity to reflect on all the off-the-chain bloody marys we consumed this year at some amazing restaurants. And there are TONS of spots we haven’t even visited yet.

There is much to do in 2013.

Choosing our faves was akin to choosing a favorite song or movie. It was nearly impossible because there are so many criteria. Each bloody has a place in our hearts for different reasons: the food and ambiance that paired with it, garnishes, choice in booze. The list continues.

Plus, we’re alarmingly becoming discerning biatches. The more bloodies we drink, the higher our standards get.

Without further ado, our top 3 Chicago bloody marys of 2012. Please note: these are rated on bloody mary alone, not food or ambiance.

#1: Twisted Spoke

Twisted Spoke pretty much tops everyone’s list of best bloody marys in Chicago. And for good reason. We’re not ones to follow the leader, but these were hands down our favorites. Twisted Spoke knows how to season a bloody mary. They win on taste alone.  

With six bloodies on the menu, it’s not hard to find your jam. Prefer yours with vodka, gin, whiskey or brandy? The choice is yours. All on varying levels of spiciness. Our favorites were Smokin’ Salma and Bloody Queen.

Smokin’ Salma, we’ve never had a more perfectly seasoned bloody. You are spicy and delicious beyond words.


Bloody Queen, you taught us that smooth and spicy could dance together in tomato juice. Your shrimp, celery and onion garnish gave you class that surpasses all others.


#2: Bin Wine Cafe

It’s hard for us not get sentimental about the Bloody Mary Flight at Bin Wine Cafe. Our friendship (and this blog) was practically born over these delicious sips. And furthermore, Bin Wine Cafe is closing. All we have now is memories of bloody marys past.

Sappiness aside, the Bloody Mary Flight made our top 3 list because, to our knowledge, Bin Wine Cafe was the only place to offer a flight. A FLIGHT! Just like wine, our other love. The flight comes with 3 oz. offerings of decidedly different and delicious bloody marys: Bucktown Mary, Consuela Mary, Asian Mary and Italian. To date, we have not come across any others with overtly Asian or Italian trappings.


Their memory will live on. We’ve checked and  Bin 36 doesn’t offer the flight. RIP indeed.

#3: Old Town Social

This one is good. Oh so good. You can tell so much care and love goes into the Belvedere Southern Mary at Old Town Social. This one ranks high on our list because it has the best garnish in the city. Crispy pickled okra, hearty smoked gouda, house-cured salumi and and proscuitto and provolone stuffed pepper. Enough said.

The bloody mix is pretty epic as well with housemade hot sauce and bountiful horseradish. This is the only one we know that includes the bloody mary-flavored vodka, Belvedere Bloody Mary. Beautifully redundant.


Honorable mentions: Longman & Eagle and Lula Cafe

The Bloody Mary, Bloody Maria and Bloody Lawrence at Longman & Eagle and the 11am Sunday 54 E. 1st St. Bloody Mary at Lula Cafe were very strong contenders. The debate was intense, but these narrowly fell out of the top three. (And apparently Logan Square is where to go for a good bloody mary).

We could go on, but we’ll end here. Thanks again for brunching with us! Cheers to 2013.

-Amber and Elaine

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5 thoughts on “Chicago’s Best Bloody Marys 2012

  1. Amber, can we go out on a bloody date, already?

  2. Katie C says:

    Happy Birthday to me! I am so glad I discovered your awesome blog. I LOVE Bloody Marys so much!!!! Yahoo!

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