Tomato Cocktails: Beyond Bloodies

You say tomato, we say tequila-based tomato cocktails.
Heirloom reviver tomato cocktail, Miller Union, Atlanta

Heirloom reviver tomato cocktail, Miller Union, Atlanta

Candied micro basil adds more green to the Heirloom Reviver, made of tequila, tomato water and lime juice.

Photo by: Image courtesy of Tuan Huynh

Image courtesy of Tuan Huynh

Candied micro basil adds more green to the Heirloom Reviver, made of tequila, tomato water and lime juice.

Name one tomato cocktail that isn't a Bloody Mary. Go on. We'll wait. 

Still thinking? Thought so. 

Mixologists across Atlanta are here to help expand your repertoire. They've been slicing, dicing, peeling and seeding the infamous fruit to craft cocktails for the annual JCT. Kitchen Attack of the Killer Tomato Festival, an event held each summer in Atlanta in which a chef or mixologist is paired with a farmer to create a tomato-based dish or drink. This year, 42 chefs and 16 mixologists will vie for the blue ribbon and proceeds benefit Georgia Organics.

When you say tomato, mixologists Stuart White of Miller Union and Eduardo Guzman of JCT. Kitchen say tequila. "Blanco tequila has a vegetal quality that pairs well with the assertive flavors of tomato water," says White, who adds cilantro and Thai basil to his Heirloom Reviver to seal the deal. "Sometimes, after drinking a tomato juice cocktail, I feel like I've had a whole meal. I was inspired to create a cocktail that still has the essence of tomato flavor while being light and refreshing."

White uses 'Black Krim' and 'Purple Cherokee' tomatoes for their high water content and garnishes his drink with candied micro basil, a technique he picked up from Miller Union pastry chef Pamela Moxley.

Heirloom Reviver

By Stuart White, Miller Union, Atlanta, Georgia

1.5 ounces blanco tequila

.75 ounces 'Black Krim' or 'Purple Cherokee' tomato water*

.5 ounces freshly squeezed lime juice

.33 ounces agave syrup

Shake ingredients, strain and serve in a cup with candied basil garnish.**

*Tomato water

Yields 35-40 ounces

3 pounds tomatoes (we prefer 'Purple Cherokee' or 'Black Krim')

2 teaspoons coarse sea salt

¼ cup cilantro, chopped coarsely

¼ cup Thai basil, chopped coarsely

Working in batches, puree the tomatoes and salt. Line a strainer with 4 layers of cheesecloth, place tomato puree in cloth and set in container to drain. 

Place chopped cilantro and Thai basil in draining container to rest with tomato water. Allow 12-18 hours to drain. Strain, transfer to a glass jar and refrigerate. The tomato water will stay fresh for 3 days. 

**Candied basil garnish

1 bunch micro basil

1 egg white

½ cup fine sugar

Wash and dry the micro basil thoroughly. Lightly coat micro basil in egg white (too much will make the sugar clump up) and dust with fine sugar. Place on a sheet pan covered in wax paper and dry at room temperature then transfer to an airtight container in the refrigerator until needed.

For his Sangrita, Eduardo Guzman of JCT. Kitchen uses lime juice and three different kinds of peppers—poblano, chipotle and guajillo—for flavor. "The tomatoes work perfectly with the earthiness and the heat of the peppers to create a balanced flavor," he says.


By Eduardo Guzman, JCT. Kitchen & Bar, Atlanta, Georgia

1 ounce Herradura silver tequila

1 ounce Sangrita mix*

Put tequila in a shot glass neat. Pour Sangrita in a shot glass with a salt, pepper and guajillo pepper powder rim. Serve side by side. 

*Sangrita mix

3 pinches salt

2 ounces lime juice

4 dashes soy sauce

1 ounce heirloom tomatoes

½ Vidalia onion

2 poblano peppers

1 chipotle pepper

1 tablespoon powered guajillo pepper

Mix all of the ingredients in a blender. 

Keep Reading

Next Up

How to Plant Bare-Root Vegetables

Discover the best way to plant asparagus, rhubarb and strawberries in your garden.

How to Sow and Plant Fruiting Vegetables

Large leaves, golden flowers and heavy yields make squashes, zucchini and cucumbers ideal plants for productive pots.

How to Turn a Tomato Cage Into a Plant Stand

Tomato cages aren’t just for tomatoes. Upcycle a tomato cage to a modern, unique planter for anywhere in your home, inside or out.

9 St. Patrick's Day Cocktail Recipes That Are Better Than Green Beer

Mix it up this year with a St. Patrick's Day-inspired libation...or two.

5 St. Patrick's Day Cocktails With an Unexpected Twist

Celebrate St. Paddy's Day with something a little better than (dyed) green beer.

How to Make Holiday Cocktail Party Invitations

Set the mood for your holiday cocktail party with a glitzy invitation. Start with our printable template, then add sparkling embellishments.

4 Clever Ways to Use Cream of Tartar Beyond Baking

Take this pantry staple beyond the mixing bowl. We've got four ways to use cream of tartar in your next cleaning emergency.


Fixer Upper

7am | 6c

Fixer Upper

8am | 7c

Fixer Upper

9am | 8c

Fixer Upper

10am | 9c

Fixer Upper

11am | 10c

Fixer Upper

12pm | 11c

House Hunters

1pm | 12c

House Hunters

1:30pm | 12:30c

House Hunters

2:30pm | 1:30c

House Hunters

3:30pm | 2:30c

House Hunters

4:30pm | 3:30c
On Tonight
On Tonight

How Close Can I Beach?

8pm | 7c

Caribbean Life

9:30pm | 8:30c

Island Life

10pm | 9c

Island Life

10:30pm | 9:30c

House Hunters

11pm | 10c

House Hunters

11:30pm | 10:30c

Caribbean Life

12am | 11c

Caribbean Life

12:30am | 11:30c

Island Life

1am | 12c

Island Life

1:30am | 12:30c

House Hunters

2:30am | 1:30c

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.