Chopped's Best Bloody in America Brunch



This past weekend, my co-worker & friend Allie and I scored tickets to the Food Network Wine & Food Festival here in New York. And not only tickets to an event, but a Bloody Mary Brunch where chefs from around the country competed for title of Best Bloody and judged by the Chopped judges. We both brought our husbands to the event, and I'd be lying if I said I wasn't super duper excited to have a day out in New York City like an adult and at a super cool event to boot.



There were 12 stations of bloody marys sampling concoctions from all over the country. I'm not actually a particularly big fan of bloody marys, but I could certainly appreciate the art of making a great cocktail that not only delighted, but tasted wonderful. Oh and there was food. A lot of really good food.


It was really fun to walk from station to station and see all of the ways that people have reinvented the bloody mary. I had no idea that there could be so many interesting twists on a classic!

{clockwise from top: Iowa, Florida, Texas, Lousiana}

Absolut sponsored the brunch and also had some non-bloody drinks which I enjoyed. My favorite of the bloodys was from Pennsylvania {the one pictured all the way at the top of this post} and featured a blended bread and butter pickle in the bloody mary! It was so, so good. I never would have thought it was a pickle that made it so tasty, but there you have it! I took so many photos at the event, so I'm going to let those do the talking.


{mom + dad's big day out}


{bloody with mango + prawns}


{new york!}


{mixing up the havana mary; florida}


{raspberry vodka doughnuts from leske's in brooklyn}



{allie & me. i think we both enjoyed the accoutrement more than the bloodys...} 


{prepping some awesome pork buns}


{this guy with his havana mary}


{candied bacon aka one of the best things i ever ate...}


{another amazing leske's treat: chocolate frosted doughnut with peanut butter + goat ricotta filling}


{the chopped judges}


{our group at the brunch!}


We had so much fun and it was great to have a day in the city, sans Penelope. Of course, Grandma and Poppy had her ready and waiting for us when we arrived home. We brought her home a Magnolia Bakery cupcake for dessert, so I don't think she minded too much that we were gone all day...


Do you like bloody mary cocktails? How do you take 'em?