Back in college my roommates and I had a Saturday tradition dubbed “Bloody Mary breakfast.” I think it started because we didn’t enjoy the hangover pain from partying on Friday night. We continued because it was an excuse to start drinking early. Anyway, after twenty years, I don’t remember what brand of Bloody Mary mix we used. But I do recall that it wasn’t that good, and after drinking them almost every Saturday for two years, I kind of gave up on them. Had Jimmy Luv existed back then, maybe things would have been different, and I wouldn’t have stuffer through so many sub-par Bloody Marys.

Just to be up-front, since college, I’ve had maybe twenty Bloody Marys in twenty years. Thus, I would not consider myself a connoisseur. Still, as someone who has a slight dislike for the beverage after such youthful overindulgence, I’m rather picky about the mixtures I can still drink and actually enjoy.

Jimmy Luv offers us two options: regular and “sneaky hot.” The regular isn’t bad. There’s a mellow spice to it and some nice layers of flavor. The one thing that bugs me a bit is the steak sauce aftertaste I pick-up following a sip. It’s not unpleasant. It’s just that I’m not a fan of steak sauce, so having it figure fairly prominently in the flavors of my Bloody Mary isn’t ideal. Still, for people that don’t have the same sensitivity, I’m sure it’s enjoyable. The “Sneaky Hot” version is much more to my liking. It’s thick and rich with tomato, plus little bits of peppers, and has a robust note of spice with a smoky undertone. It’s hot enough to wake you up, but it’s not gonna knock you down. Perhaps, it’s a bit salty, but that depends on your personal preference.

So in short, if you like spicy, I would highly recommend the “Sneaky Hot.” For the folks that aren’t fans of heat, the regular mix is pretty good, especially if you don’t want to make your own concoction. But don’t just take my word for it. Try them for yourself. Hell, “Bloody Mary breakfasts” can be a lot of fun if you’re up for it.

By Michael Perkins