Not Just The Best in Idaho…It’s the Best Bloody Mary I’ve Ever Had Anywhere
For the past few months I've been on a quest to find the BEST Bloody Mary breakfast in the Treasure Valley. I've visited Bardenay in Eagle, Grant's Neighborhood bar and grill in Meridian, Fork in downtown Boise, Twin Peaks at the Boise Spectrum, Eureka in downtown Boise. the Homestead Bar and Grill in Meridian, Tailgate Tap House and Grill, next to BSU and Bacon in downtown Boise.It's been really hard work, sacrificing my Sunday mornings in search of the best Bloody Mary Breakfast in the Treasure Valley. The only rules were that the places I visited were located somewhere here in the Treasure Valley and the location had to serve Bloody Mary's and also some sort of breakfast. Thank you to everyone who suggested different places to visit. It's now time to reveal my favorite places to enjoy a blood Mary here in the Treasure Valley...
1. Homestead Bar and Grill
I find it hard to give anyone a 10 on a scale of 1-10, but Homestead earns a 10 because not only is it the best Bloody Mary I've enjoyed in the Treasure Valley...it is the best Bloody Mary I've had anywhere! I love Bloody Mary's and I get them almost everywhere I visit if I can. I was recently in Phoenix, Arizona on vacation and I visited Hash Kitchen which is home to Arizona's best Bloody Mary. It was good, but nowhere close to the Homestead's Bloody Mary. Homestead's is a huge 32 ounce behemoth, loaded with a slider, chicken wing, pretzel, bacon, various fresh and pickled vegetables and a sidecar of chili and another sidecar of beer. The food toppings were impressive, but a good bloody Mary still has to have a great mix and taste great...and this Bloody Mary has it all! It's Bloody good and that's why it receives a 10 out of 10. It truly is the best Bloody Mary I've had anywhere.
I had more people suggest I visit Bacon than any other Bloody Mary spot in the Treasure Valley. The best thing about Bacon is that the Bloody Mary comes with bacon just like you'd expect. However, since this place was called bacon, I'd hoped for a lot more bacon..because, well I love bacon. While the Bloody Mary is served basic, you can order a bacon sampler with your bloody Mary that includes five different flavors of bacon served in a shot glass, so that more than made up for only one slice included in my Bloody Mary. Even with the puny one slice of bacon, it's still tasty and I give a 9 out of 10 on my Bloody Mary Taste scale.
3. Grant's Neighborhood Bar
Grant's has a lot of positive feedback on social media, especially for their Bloody Mary. It's beautiful and tasty. Grant's truly is the quintessential neighborhood bar. Even thought I don't live in the neighborhood I half expected to see someone I know. It's small and quaint, so you may have a short wait at some of the busier times on the weekends, although in good weather there is an outside patio that expands the seating area. As you can see by the picture, it's a bloody large Bloody Mary with various foods and vegetables included, such as a sausage slider, bacon, celery stalk, pickled onions, etc. On my Bloody Mary Scale, I give it an 8.5 out of 10.
Nothing fancy about the Bloody Marys at Bardenay in Eagle, just fresh and pickled veggies paired with a bloody mary mix and served in a small glass. As with most places you can order with your choice of vodka, including in this instance, Bardenay's own house vodka. Since that's what they are known for, I had to try it that way, even though my vodka of choice is usually Grey Goose. Even though it's not a big drink loaded with extras, and not anything spectacular or memorable, I thought it was very tasty, so I give it a solid 8 out of 10.
5. Twin Peaks
Twin peaks was quite a surprise, both for their breakfast and the Bloody Mary. Twin Peaks has a make your own Bloody Mary bar, which I'm not a big fan off. It's like a sandwich. If I make it, it's not really good, but someone else can use all the same stuff to make it and it's awesome. That's the way I feel about Bloody Marys. With that being said, the line up of items you can add to your Bloody Mary is staggering. You've got a couple flavors of bacon and a virtual salad bar of other items to add including pickled okra. Who has pickled okra? The other thing you need to know is that the Bloody Mary breakfast is only served on Sundays and during football season it gets very busy after the kickoff, so get there before 11 a.m. Keep in mind Twin Peaks is considered a breastaurant, so some of you might not feel it's appropriate to take grandma and the whole family after church. I give the Twin Peaks a 7.5 out of 10. Once again it would have scored higher, I'm sure if it wasn't me making it.
Fork is a fabulous and highly rated restaurant in downtown Boise. I've been many times for dinner, but this was my first time for breakfast and Bloody Marys. Once again this is a make your own Bloody Mary, or you can order it from the bar tender. You already know my preference for someone else making my drink, so our group ordered the pre-made version with Grey Goose Vodka. I would have liked some fresh veggies included in my drink, but it only came with pickles, a pickled bean and pickled okra. That's two places that have pickle okra here in Boise...who would have thunk it? The Mary mix was also very thin and tasted too tomatoey and was a little bland. On my Bloody Mary scale, Fork scores a 7 out of 10.
Tailgate was kind of an afterthought for me. My wife and I went here after spending the night at the Inn at 500 for my birthday. It was just a little ways from downtown on the edge of the BSU campus and they have an amazing student discount, so the place was packed with BSU students. We both like Bloody Marys and saw they had an all you can eat breakfast and make your own Bloody Mary and Mimosa bar. The all you can eat breakfast brunch was awesome with some especially amazing food items, which I will talk about in a future blog, but I wasn't as thrilled about the make your own bloody Mary bar. It was located in a very crowded spot at the end of the bar, so it wasn't easy to get to and if more than two people were trying to make a bloody Mary or Mimosa, it was almost impossible. Kudos for having maple candied and plain bacon. Plus I like that you could also use Clamato instead of Mary mix. But I was not blown away by the Mary mix and the bacon was a little under cooked, which is never good in a Bloody Mary...nobody likes floppy bacon in a Bacon Bloody Mary. I've only visited once, so who knows if I just got unlucky. So on my scale, I give it a 6.5 out of 10.
Once again a lot of people suggested we try this downtown location on 8th street, just down a little way from Fork. Eureka is known for a wide variety of great food for lunches and dinners, plus they have a Bloody Mary and Mimosa Breakfast every weekend. I know some people like their Bloody Marys heavy on the tomato juice taste, but I am not one of them. So I admit, that colors my rankings. The Eureka Blood Mary is one that is way too tomatoey tasting to me. I had mine spicy, which I like usually and can handle hot most of the time, but this one was also a little too spicy and hot for my tastes. So the Eureka Bloody Mary gets a 5 1/2 out of 10 from me.
Thank you for all your input on which places to visit. I will tell you right now, we have so many amazing places to enjoy Bloody Mary Breakfasts here in the Treasure Valley, we're very lucky!
Also keep in mind, even though I like to consider myself a bloody Mary expert, I have my own personal tastes, and yours may differ from mine, so please try all these places out for yourself and let me know what you think.
And if I missed a place that serves great Bloody Marys , please add them in the comment section below or on our Facebook page. Happy drinking, just remember to drink responsibly.
Coming Soon: I will give my reviews of the breakfasts from the above places so keep watching mix106radio.com.