There’s perhaps no other all-day, boozy brunch in town as revered as Simon Brunch, helmed by beloved local chef Kerry Simon. Las Vegas’s top scenesters, celebrities, executives, and nightlifers looking to recover from the prior night have been heading to the Palms Place gem since it debuted in summer 2008. One of its major draws? The create-your-own Bloody Mary bar. A staple at any brunch, the refreshing libation fittingly happens to be Simon’s favorite drink.
“I love tomatoes, and the drink is almost a meal in a glass,” he says. “And for Vegas, it’s the best hangover remedy.”
Simon admits that when conceptualizing the menu for his now famous Sunday spread, he wanted the Bloody Mary bar to tie in with the interactive dining experience. “Guests become mixologists for themselves and usually their friends,” Simon says. “There’s a lot of ‘try this—no, try this’ going on.”
Simon’s bar includes nearly every Bloody Mary add-on, garnish, and seasoning available, several vodka choices, and a range of tomato juices. Extras like horseradish, celery, jalapeños, beef jerky, cilantro, peperoncini, and a plethora of hot-sauce brands make the drinks completely customizable to taste.
Simon says that although he tweets his hot sauce of the week every Sunday, he advises drinkers to not overdo this key ingredient. “The most painful way to mess up your drink is with the hot sauce,” he says. “This is an unpleasant and all-too-common way that people ruin their Mary. And your ingredients must be fresh. I can’t stress that enough—no old mixes.” Wise words coming from a guy better known for his sweet tooth.
Kerry Simon’s Bloody Mary
1 1 ⁄2 oz. Stoli Elit vodka
1 tsp. A1 steak sauce
1 ⁄8 tsp. celery salt
3 dashes Tabasco
1 ⁄8 tsp. fresh cracked pepper
1 ⁄2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 ⁄4 tsp. horseradish
8 oz. tomato juice
2 lemon wedges
1 celery stalk
Combine first eight ingredients in an ice-filled shaker, shake, and pour over ice, salting the rim of the glass if desired. Garnish with stalk of fresh celery and lemon wedges.