Aaron Kaub at The Boom
Photo by Mark Hancock

When the increasingly sinister character Jack Torrance (played by Jack Nicholson) walks in to a ghostly 1920s bar in the classic horror movie The Shining, the “hair of the dog that bit me” is his drink of choice.

While there are numerous drinks that fit in that class, the Bloody Mary is at the top of the list. It’s a classic drink to have at breakfast or brunch.

The Bloody Mary has some gruesome origins. One largely popular story points to bartender Fernand “Pete” Petiot at Harry’s New York Bar in Paris during the 1920s. He named the cocktail after Mary the First of England because she had almost 300 people burned at the stake for heresy, thus earning her the nickname Bloody Mary.

Of course, you don’t need a hangover or a gruesome story to enjoy these refreshing concoctions.

Follow a neon arrow pointing to the door and you’re at the HiLo Club, 1221 NW 50th St. This well known spot (established in 1956) creates a wickedly wonderful Bloody Mary. A local favorite, it includes the HiLo’s special house mix, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco sauce and is topped with olives, pickles and an asparagus spear.

At The Boom, 2218 NW 39th St., bartender and manager Aaron Kaub developed his own Bloody Mary recipe.

“I make a steak-flavored Bloody Mary with A.1. steak sauce and also add olive juice and Rose’s sweetened lime juice,” he said.

Each bartender at The Boom has his or her own spin on the drink, and with five bartenders on staff rotation, each blend will keep you returning for more. Hint: make reservations in advance for the Sunday Bloody Mary bar, which usually sells out.

Spice it up with a house-infused wasabi Bloody Mary at Deep Fork Grill, 5418 N. Western Ave. It includes the house tomato juice blend and a toasted sesame seed garnish.

“We have a build-your-own- Bloody-Mary bar on weekends,” said Kayla Jones, bartender at Stella Modern Italian Cuisine, 1201 N. Walker Ave.

Stella features Bloody Mary vegetable toppings, including asparagus, carrots and peppers.

“A popular Bloody Mary addition is a pepper vodka, or substitute jalapeño tequila instead of vodka,” Jones said.

Keep up the tempo at The Drum Room, 4309 N. Western Ave.

“One version of the Bloody Mary here includes Flaming Lips hot sauce. It’s spicy with olives and limes,” said bartender Zach Armfield.

Another version involves The Drum Room’s homemade Bloody Mary mix and Guinness.

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