Hey, a little background to this question. I am currently cutting back on my alcohol consumption. No dramatic abjuration of the demon rum, just reducing the number of times I pour booze into a glass out of routine habit, boredom, or actual thirst. I'd rather booze mindfully but perhaps less routinely.
While introspecting about this, I realized that one thing I enjoy about booze is having strong and complex flavors in my beverage. Having a flavorful beverage at hand also helps cuts down on episodes of random snacking. So one of the "things to pour in a glass" substitutes I've taken up is commercial tomato juice, which I have been "jazzing up" a bit with dashes of hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce. (I also cut it by adding about 30% cold filtered water to my glass, as my palate finds store-shelf-strength stuff too soupy for beverage use.)
This post is to solicit suggestions for other additives and adulterants (mixers) I can stir into my tomato juice to vary or complexify its flavor. When I go to my liquor cabinet, I don't limit myself to one or two standard drinks every time; I mix up something different with every visit. So right now I am trying to figure out what else might be good in a glass of tomato juice, that I haven't thought of yet.
One obvious direction is to mix in other vegetable juices (V-8 tastes better than tomato juice, natch, but it's also twice as expensive.) I do have a juicer but not a lot of surplus in my winter garden, and I can't see buying stuff from a thousand miles away at this time of year just to be juicing it. So, in my mind, adding other vegetable juices is a scheme for the future, when I can juice stuff that I've grown myself. It's also not what's really wanted here, because I'm trying to replace the habit of stepping to my liquor cabinet. So I need suggestions on the level of complexity and time commitment of mixing a cocktail, not projects that would need me to dirty up the kitchen and wash out my juicer.
So let's hear it! How do you like your tomato juice?
Clam juice is a classic addition. Also I'd expect you could find some interesting flavors with bitter/sour juices like pomegranate. In the other direction I think you could go with maple syrup and bubbly water.
I also think you.might be able to find some pleasant south east Asian flavors with fish sauce, ginger, and basil.
I love tomato juice, and alas, I can no longer drink it! I have lupus and nightshades cause flare-ups. Sad!
But...in the past, I drank it mixed with grapefruit juice and/or a splash of lime...maybe add a pinch of salt if it's unsalted. Yes, Tabasco...try the chipotle kind. Of course, you could spice it up! Garlic powder, black pepper, basil (fresh or dried), a tiny bit of cumin. Nutritional yeast sounds like it would be good...never tried it. Might make it too soupy for you. Oh! Sauerkraut juice! Kimchi juice! Options are endless. :D
I'm manifesting an ecovillage in rural Central Florida. What's your superpower?
I'm with Chris: All hail the victorious, happy and glorious Caesar coctail!
I know a chef who makes it with golden tequila instead of vodka.
When I'm the designated driver and booze-limited, I have them make it very, very spicy. Habanero as well as tabasco. Sipping that liquid fire, very slowly, I get an endorphin rush that's really quite pleasant.
Pepper and salt is my default for tomato juice, preferably over ice.
Not quite alcohol free: homemade 1% alcohol ginger ale with lots of ginger is tasty and refreshing with a bite, especially if you add lemon or hot sauce.
Pomegranate syrup mixed with orange juice
Rose water or orange water mixed with juice
Lemonade (lemon juice, water, sugar, and a slice or two of real lemon with the Peel for flavour in the bottle). Also works with added mint, basil, ginger, etc.
- iced tea, with a slice of lemon for the bitterness.
-iced lavender basil tea
- various veggies fruits and herbs in water (cucumbers, tomatos, mint, basil, ginger, melon, berries, celery)
- hot cocoa with cinnamon or vanilla
Another vote for clam juice.
Add some Worcestershire sauce, some spicy cock sauce, and a stick of celery or drunken bean.
In Canada, we have a name brand drink called Clamato juice. Clams + tomato juice. It's very good. The locals use it in a kind of bloody mary drink called a Ceaser, but I find it waters down the taste too much. Much better to have it 'dry'.
I have additional questions about "clam juice", which is not an ingredient I'm familiar with or know how to use. It's sold here in a tiny glass bottle (holds one cup, 8 ounces) for close to three bucks -- more even than a half-gallon of tomato juice! I always assumed it was basically a saltwater byproduct from clam processing, so I would be paying booze prices for "fishy salt water". Never saw the value proposition, so I haven't actually tried it.
So, how is it used? In tiny amounts as a condiment? In a 50/50 mix? Or somewhere in between? Is it salty? Is it more about flavor, or about giving your drink that "ocean beach seaweed pile" smell?
We do have Clamato here, but I've never tasted it. Like V-8, it costs more than twice as much as regular tomato juice, which seems like an unreasonable premium to pay for a shot of clam juice.
I'm a Canadian whose favourite cocktail is indeed the Caesar. What do I love about it? It's not sweet. It fills the hunger gap and makes a great appetizer at the same time as being a drink. It's incredibly satisfying. You can make it beautifully spicy. And--importantly for you--it tastes just as good as a virgin drink as it does with the vodka.
My advice would be to start with a low ratio of the clam juice, or just buy the Clamato. Add the Caesar ingredients--do it up right :) See how you like it. Don't take a glug of straight clam juice or warm Clamato or something... see if you like it under its best circumstances first. It's maybe a bit like fish sauce--kinda gross in it's own way, but adds immeasurable complexity to certain Asian foods.
Location: Canadian Prairies - Zone 3b
posted 1 month ago
Lately, bartenders have been trying to outdo each other by adding a few extras to the classic Caesar.
Dan, I'd go for a V-8 + tomato juice blend for starters. The V-8 is a sodium bomb, so diluting it calms that down, plus cuts the cost. Add your favorite hot sauce(s)? And as others say, with water and ice, especially in the heat!
As far as juicing goes, you could maybe juice and freeze into cubes the stuff you want to add. That way you can batch it out and save time/cleaning doing the juicing, and then you would be "juicing-up" your drink rather than "watering-it-down" with ice.
I'd also consider what other bottled juices or carbonated stuff would go well (no juicing, just mixing) and mix them up! super easy.
Then there's beer as a mixer. Michelada recipe
Nails are sold by the pound, that makes sense.
Location: Ontario - Gardening in zone 3b, 4b, or 6b, depending on the day