While, the cocktail was invented by bartender Fernand Petiot at Harry's Bar in Paris in 1921, it was perfected when Serge Obolensky, a "well known man about town whose penchant for vodka was in keeping with his aristocratic Russian background", asked Petiot to make the vodka cocktail he had in Paris. The formula was spiced up with salt, pepper, lemon and Worcestershire Sauce, but since “Bloody Mary” was deemed too vulgar for the hotel’s elegant King Cole Bar, it was rechristened the “Red Snapper.” The original recipe is still served in the King Cole Bar today. And, here's the recipe so you can make your own:
The Red Snapper Original Recipe:
1 oz. vodka
2 oz. Tomato juice
1 dash lemon juice
2 dashes salt
2 dashes black pepper
2 dashes cayenne pepper
3 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
As well as the restoration of the 1907 “Old King Cole” mural by Maxfeild Parrish, the bar also has updated furnishings and textiles, a new leopard carpet, sleek silver leather and velour banquettes and tub chairs, new black marble high-top tables and a golden-lit marble bar, and large mirrors that drop from the ceiling.
The new bar menu offers six different takes on the Red Snapper, each priced at an amazing $25 each! If you find yourself hungry for something more than celery and olives, you can nibble on dishes from the new restaurant menu: a seafood platter featuring fresh oysters, clams, lobster and caviar; or the "Grandma Guilia’s Meatballs’", a recipe taken from Chef John DeLucie’s own Italian grandmother.
If you overdo it, again, on New Years Day and need a place to sleep off the cocktails, January 1st rates at the hotel start at $855. That's a pricey hangover!
[Photo: St. Regis New York/King Cole Bar.]