What Is the Difference Between a Bloody Mary and Bloody Maria? 

Texans know.

CROP Southern Living Bloody Mary

Every cocktail has its rightful place. Try to have a Derby party with a Mint Julep, or an Alabama beach day without a Bushwacker, or a rodeo without Texas Ranch Water. Southerners are serious about entertaining, and that includes the refreshments. You won't find a Saturday in the South during football season without a Bloody Mary kicking off the festivities, especially if it's an early game. Down here though, you'll find Bloody Marias at the tailgate, too.

Of course, the Bloody Mary is a quintessential brunch cocktail across the country. There's no question about that. The savory tomato-based aperitif is a beloved steward for people who need "hair of the dog," but it's also a daytime-appropriate drink that lets you accessorize with tasty garnishes, such as pickled okra, celery, bacon, olives, or anything else you want. Bloody Marias are the same, barring one important detail: the booze.

Bloody Mary vs. Bloody Maria

As most people are aware, Bloody Marys start with tomato juice and a handful of other ingredients, such as lemon juice, Worcestershire, hot sauce, horseradish, and celery salt or Old Bay seasoning if desired. You can customize with garnishes and to-each-their-own additions like extra hot sauce. The last component is vodka. Together, it makes a savory vodka cocktail with a kick. To get started, try our recipe for Big-Batch Bloody Marys.

While the Bloody Mary doesn't come from the South, we've come up with a version that does. Enter the Bloody Maria. So, what is a Bloody Maria?

The only major difference between Bloody Marys and Bloody Marias is the liquor. Bloody Marys are made with vodka, and Bloody Marias are not. A Bloody Maria calls for tequila instead, and all Texans are nodding their heads right now. There's no question that we can thank the Tex-Mex culture for this clever tweak.

By all other accounts, Bloody Marias are the same as Bloody Marys, except that the tequila might have you of the mind to switch in more lime juice and less lemon juice, as well as Texas Pete in lieu of Tabasco. You might add a Tajin (chile-lime seasoning) rim, too. The Tex-Mex tweak is the perfect choice for those who prefer tequila over vodka, and you'd be surprised at how well tequila compliments the savoriness, heat, and tomato base.

Next time you're setting up the build-your-own Bloody bar at a tailgate, brunch, or shower, consider including a bottle of tequila alongside the vodka. You won't regret it! In fact, we've even been known to experiment with Bourbon Bloody Marys from time to time.

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