A true Bloody Mary should always incorporate a few ounces of beer. Essentially, what we’ve created is the reciprocal of a Bloody Mary that’s made with a little beer. In this case, the majority of the beverage is beer instead of tomato juice. This recipe broke into the scene in 2007 as number 8 of the 13 Imperial Beer series and is classified as a specialty beer. With a double golden beer as the base, it finishes with a hearty 8.25% ABV in order to meet our “imperial” status. I use the word “beer” because we use a California Lager strain commonly found in steam beer which is a lager fermented at warmer temperatures. Therefore, it’s not quite ale and not quite lager but rather possessing characteristics of both. In the primary fermentation, we add Roma tomato puree (about 2 lbs./gallon!), horseradish, black peppercorns, dill and celery seed. The combination of golden beer fermenting with Roma tomato puree produces a uniquely balanced, bright orange beer that tastes like a bloody Mary. The end result is very much a beer first, but one fully integrated in harmony with the highlights of a great Bloody Mary.