#SearchforMary: Bloody Mike at Ditka’s

Chicago. The city we love. Sure, we write about our obsession with bloody marys and brunch, but at the core, it’s a love letter to our beloved Second City.

Perhaps our favorite part about our search for the best bloody mary is that it’s led us to explore different neighborhoods and meet new people. To say that people here are passionate about good food would be a vast understatement. Everyone is always quick to tell you about best brunches and bloody marys they’ve enjoyed.

On one of many such adventures, a brunch-hopping woman raved about the bloody mary at Ditka’s. We’ve been many places, but the Chicago steakhouse remains unchartered bloody mary territory. Nothing says classic Chicago quite like them. After all, our city was built around the stockyards, where the nickname “City of Broad Shoulders” was born.


So, we thought why not give Da Coach’s bloody mary a spin. The Saturday we visited was the day of the NHL Stadium Series, so Ditka’s was swarming with pre-gaming Hawks fans. Walking in, we spotted several fans drinking a Bloody Mike and instantly knew we were in good company.


The City of Broad Shoulders requires a bloody mary with equally broad shoulders, and the Bloody Mike is it. It’s thick and hardworking, made with Ditka’s Kickass Bloody Mary mix and Stoli Hot. The mix (which you can also buy) has a thick tomato taste that’s heavy on celery salt and it finishes with a little heat, thanks to the jalapeño of Stoli Hot.

In true Midwestern fashion, this bloody also comes with Iron Mike’s Ale as a beer back. (What doesn’t this guy do?) Often, beer backs seem superfluous, but this one was a nice palate cleanser between drinks. Da Coach doesn’t mess around with the garnish either—you get a skewer of shrimp, lemon, lime, tomato, pickle, tomato, pepperoncini. It’s a classic and unpretentious bloody mary, much like the Windy City.

Bloody Mike: Our rating (scale of 1–5)

Taste: 4

Spice: 3.5

Treats: 4

Creativity: 3.5

Overall: 3.75

While people might  think of deep dish pizza and ketchup-less hot dogs when they think of Chicago, we’re much more than that. We’re an interesting mash-up of hardworking cultures, cuisine and inhabitants. And besides some super good bloody marys, that’s something we’ve discovered along the way.

This post was sponsored by Stoli. Opinions and photography are our own. Join Stoli in their coast-to-coast search for your favorite local flavors by following #SearchForMary. And if you can, be sure to check out the Stoli Bloody Mary truck making its next stop in Dallas (March 12 – 23)!

STOLICHNAYA® Premium Vodka and Flavored Premium Vodkas. 37.5%-40% Alc/Vol. (75-80 proof). Distilled from Russian Grain. Stoli Group USA, LLC, New York, NY ©2014 Spirits International, B.V.

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