Author: darceyforbes

You can't choose your family but you can choose to make good choices when drinking Bloody Mary's. These are the adventures and photo documentary of the best Bloody Mary's city to city.

Everything IS Bigger in Texas. Star Bar

Well, that phrase holds true and in Austin. They keep it big and do it in a wonderful style of weird. There are many choices when you visit Austin for an over the top Bloody Mary.


Star Bar in South Austin was founded in 1995 and has a drink that is something to behold. It is a Bloody Mary gone wild. This one needs a plate, napkin and an empty stomach. Oh, and patience as this one will take a while. This truly is the kitchen sink kind of drink. What isn’t included may be an easier description for me to retell.



I thought I had seen it all until I found it on Instagram. When I saw it I knew I had to put it on the list to visit. This bad boy is only served on weekends and in limited supply. Only 12 are served in a day unless you call ahead and “reserve” yours. Not even joking! There is a lot that goes into this for sure and Paul, the Manager, was kind enough to oblige my curiosity on a Monday.

The atmosphere is industrial with rolled up garage like walls for an open atmosphere with two large patios. You get the feeling this place must spill over with folks coming out for the many beers on tap, TVs to watch and great atmosphere. It has a laid back vibe for sure. They do not have  kitchen but food trailers are found right next door to whet your appetite. This is a place of drink and be merry and relaxation.  If you are hungry… can order the Hail Mary for a drink and a meal.  Ready for the list?

Honey Bun
P Terry’s Cheese Burger ( a local favorite like our In and Out but more hyper-local which has to be delivered)
Dill Pickle
Hard Boiled Egg
Pickled Okra
Lil Cheddar Smokies
Chicken Nuggets
Powdered Mini Donut
Cheddar Cheese
Pepper Jack Cheese
Cherry Tomatoes

No, I am not kidding. That is all adorned above a Zing Zang base as it takes a supporting role to this concoction. It is mixed up with pickle juice and creole seasoning for added flavor.

Watching it being made brought a giggle to my local friend, Wendie, as she joined me on this pilgrimage. I don’t think she really believed this was my hobby and these crazy drinks exist. I am glad she enjoyed the hilarity of this moment with me on a rain-soaked day. Our cheeks and stomachs hurt after this adventure.


Paul (Star Bar Manager) and Ebony (Bartender/Assembly Line Mary Maker) took great care of us that day and created a great memory and entry into the never  ending adventures of the Bloody Mary Tourist. Next  time you are in Austin do not pass this up if you are looking for a great venue to enjoy an extraordinary libation of extraordinary proportions.  It is well worth the wait and the photo opportunity!


The only negative about this place…..It’s a Packers bar. Son of a Nutcracker. A Packers bar. Go BEARS! 





Federal Bar LB is an Agency of Aid…For Your Hangover 

Federal Bar in Long Beach is a unique experience in itself as it is an old bank converted into an awesome bar and restaurant. The high ceiling inside the great room will have your eyes gazing all around. Original woodwork is still in tact in this large cavernous like place. Like a speakeasy above ground….oh but there is an underground space where you can drink in the original vaults. With such a beautiful canvas you can only have a beautiful menu of food and craft cocktails. As you take a seat you will imagine what the hustle and bustle of this establishment was when it was Pacific National Bank building back in 1925.

On weekends, this gastropub offers a great brunch and a menu of Bloody Mary’s. Pair your drink with a Bloody Mary Burger and Short Rib Poutine. This combo will cure anything that is ailing you.

Their Bloody Mary is a marvel and addicting. Try their Habanero style Mary donned with a spicy slider! Ballast Point Fugu Habanero vodka, pickled Habanero juice, house made steak sauce, Lime juice, Worchestshire and Ballast Point Bloody Mary Mix. It is not for the faint of heart! Wowza. It’s got a kick for sure! You will not be disappointed.
Where: 102 Pine Ave., Long Beach

Info: (562) 435-2000;

“Best Bloody Mary Long Beach”


Saddle Up to Saddle Back Ranch-Orange, Ca

Who knew this chain had more than music and a mechanical bull? I wandered in after a spa day at Burke Williams to enjoy an afternoon libation and was pleasantly surprised at a great selection of Bloody Mary’s. And the word of the day was bottomless. Yes, bottomless for $10.99 until 3pm everyday! Say what? Not only bottomless but a variety of great concoctions. My favorite of the bunch was the Holy Water. I warded off any vampires with this one and would go back again and again to ward off the undead. The green onions floating with garlic was a great combo in their homemade mix.

Their tacos were a great addition as well. I didn’t expect much from a “chain” but quickly became a fan. I then tried their Fallen Angel as that seemed the right choice after the anti-vampire selection. Again, wasn’t disappointed. Had I more time and an Uber I would have tried them all…well…except the one made from Tequila. As much as folks try to convince me I cannot imagine Tequila in lieu of Vodka. Maybe on the next trip in.

Besides, paying for bottomless at a price $10.99 is something you can’t ignore!

“Best bottomless Bloody Mary”

“Best Bloody Mary Orange County”


Pardon Me, Bub. Chicago. 

Back in my hometown of Chicago. There is a new place to go for BBQ, ‘Merica and a Bloody Mary. This was a recommendation by some pals who enjoy a good Bloody. Thanks to for the tip.

I headed to the across the River and felt like I stepped into something that was more Texas than downtown achievable for sure. Especially the wall of Budweiser and Bud Light cans creating an American Flag mural. I felt like Toby Keith may jump out at any moment and start singing “I love this Bar” but I digress.

Now, I am a bit bummed I am reviewing this on a weekday as they weekend Bloody Mary bar is regarded as pretty stellar. Go read Bloody Best to get the full run down as it would be plagiarism from me. Nonetheless, I saddled up to the bar and soaked in the smells of BBQ and took in a Cubs game on tv.

The Bloody was filled with my favorite…pickled garnishes. And a side car of a pony Miller High Life. I wish this trend would catch on in California. The house mix is a perfect pairing of fresh tomato juice and the variety of spices you know to be used in their BBQ rubs and sauces. Layers of smokey flavors, spice and everything you come to enjoy in a Bloody Mary and BBQ.

Well worth the visit and the food lives up to the reviews. But hey….I am no food critic. Unless it is topped on my Bloody Mary.

“Best Bloody Mary Chicago”

Carlsbad Is CarlsGood!

This was an eclectic old age Sinatra place for SoCal. Pick your fish and preparation just down from the Ocean. Feels like an old 60s joint but feels in the moment. Great food and dark atmosphere seems like I could be here swilling martinis. Instead it is a Bloody Mary I seek. Throw a shrimp on a Bloody and some Manzanilla Olives and I am whisked away easily. Especially with a sword toothpick. Old school, baby! Swing by Fish House Vera Cruz for a throwback. Get the Clams. Or anything here.

“Best Bloody Mary Carlsbad”

Dogz Ain’t a Bad Dog

I admit. I hated Dogz. Yes. A place that advertises a $5 Bloody Mary all day, everyday. How you say? I hate Dogz for its nightlife. It turns into a sausage fest and a place you cannot enjoy a perfectly chilled brew (as advertised) because it is shoulder to shoulder nonsense. Maybe it shows my age. And the fact one night I closed out as Jose Flores. I am not Hispanic and not a male. That took a lot to unwind afterwards as they could not locate my effing real credit card.

I have gone back since trying to not be a hater. And,today, I was happy to be there after a great day of yoga, bike riding and kayaking. I wanted a Bloody Mary and this was close by. I went in and removed all hate and was so pleased.

Dan was serving and made me his own Bloody Mary as the bartenders are trying to one up each other. His was on par and was served with a new twist. An olive stuffed with Jalepeno Goat Cheese stuffed olive. And a splash of Long Beach’s own Cimino sauce.

It was a great atmosphere of locals and good people (daytime people) and a great drink. I was told to come on Sunday’s to taste the Grandmaster Bloody made by Matt. And I shall. I was pleasantly surprised and a new found fondness of this place. Just never after dark. #bloodymary #bestbloodymarylongbeach 

“Best Bloody Mary Long Beach”

Best “Throw in the Kitchen Sink” Bloody Mary in Long Beach 

V Room Sriracha #bloodymary garnished with Doritos, Pretzels, Pickle, Olives, Cucumber and Celery. Salt rim of Tajin and Cayenne. Housemade BM mix that is flavorful, not full of horseradish, peppery, slightly spicy and a solid performance.   #bestbloodymary #longbeach

Great drinks in a fun and interesting atmosphere… lots to take in. It may be my new favorite place to go in Long Beach.

You must try this…seriously! And ask for Melanie. She makes is the conductor of “the orchestra” of this place. My favorite quote from her, “I like cheese in my Bloody Mary”…Doritos is the new cheese garnish.
#bestinshow #happyvalentines #bestbloodymarylongbeach #divebarglory

“Best Bloody Mary in Long Beach”