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Clotts Mamato

I am always surprised that more people don’t know that the Bloody Caesar was invented in Canada.  The story goes that in the late sixties bartender Walter Chell created the cocktail from the typical ingredients for pasta vongole (clams and tomato sauce) as part of the festivities for launching a new Italian restaurant in Calgary. Motts is searching for the most passionate Caesar-lover to head their campaign to have the Caesar made Canada’s national drink through this Facebook page.

This promotion brought my friend Jason instantly to mind.  On top of being an aficionado of all things Clamato he is also a die-hard political junkie.  Hoping for some choice reminiscences about Caesars mixed in his room on 3rd Whit when we were undergrads I dropped him an email.  Jason did not disappoint.  I’ll let him speak for himself:

I remember drinking virgin caesars when I was only 5-years old. When I got to university, though, I learned my father’s recipe and added the vodka. I didn’t realize how good they were until women started asking me to come over and mix Caesars.

He’s right that as cocktail preferences diverge along gender lines (didn’t I hear something about another movie featuring Cosmo-swilling women?) the Caesar is common ground.  A drink that appeals to both genders surely has a leg up on candidates that don’t.

On the recipe front Jason’s is partly anchored in tradition while adding his own spin.

First, I add a whole lot of worcestershire sauce. When I think I’ve added enough, I add one more squirt. Then a few hits of Tabasco, following by salt and pepper to taste. I then add enough lemon to double the volume. Finally, I double the new volume with Vodka. Then I add a pepperoncini pepper and top the glass up with Original Motts Clamato.

Personally, I need a horseradish kick in my Caesar but each to his own. For variation Jason sometimes garnishes with celery, pickles, olives, or cocktail onions and increases the spice by adding some of the brine from the pepperoncini jar.  On tomato component he’s clear about his devoted loyalty to the Original Mott’s Clamato.

In the days before poker took over from bowling and billiards as the default programming for cable sports networks you had to turn to the internet for poker entertainment.  I remember reading a story about a group of friends–including Phil Gordon the co-host of Celebrity Poker Showdown–who made frequent trips to Vegas.  Here’s one of their secrets to staying at the table as long as possible (taken from here):

HELPFUL POKER STAMINA HINT: Bruce and I discovered a super-secret bonus-comp sort of deal that you can get at the Mirage, if you are trying to match Endurance Lady’s session.  Forget taking a 5 minutes break to go to the snack bar.  Just order a tomato juice with lots of olives and celery, and tip big.  The waitress will bring, essentially, a meal in a glass.  All the nutrition you need for those marathon sessions.

If this electrolyte-rich Bloody Mary (Caesar’s castrated cousin) is alright then surely the Clamato version will be better.

I’ll  offer one more anecdote that highlights why it is important to Please Drink Responsibly™.  A cousin of mine discovered the premixed Caesar–convenient for those situations like boats and bonfires where the ritual of mixing one from scratch is a no-go–a few summers ago.  Having consumed a couple more than the recommended serving he was inspired to offer a ringing endorsement for “these Clotts Mamato Caesars”.  In one of my less-charitable moments (the summers of ’06 and ’07) I went to great efforts to make this his nickname.  While the name has not stuck and he has an entirely different version of events I think it would make an excellent nom de guerre for a campaign to lead Canada’s National Cocktail Party.

Both Jason and Clotts would make excellent candidates and if you know of anyone else who is interested encourage them to visit the Mott’s Clamato facebook page before the contest closes on June 11.

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2 Comments

  1. Alex says:

    Ahhhh…. yes.

    I’ve been chillin’ on the beach here in Florida having a bloody mary for breakfast every day. Lemon wedge, lime wedge, celery stalk, two jumbo olives and a shrimp not worthy of its name. Good, but something is missing. These things just seem empty. yah… its the clam, and the rim… there is no celery salt on the rim!

  2. foodwithlegs says:

    The celery salt rim is an under-appreciated attribute of the Caesar. Unique, I think. Surely they must have clams in Florida? Have the bartender mash some up for tomorrow’s drink. Worst-case scenario is that you are known as “that guy” for the next two days.

    Glad to hear you’re having a good time, Alex.

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