What can I say? I’m Canadian.
The caesar isn’t well known outside of these northern borders, which is strange to me because it is insanely popular here. There isn’t a bar in this nation that doesn’t serve caesars. They are similar to the Bloody Mary (and are sometimes mistakenly referred to as “Bloody Caesars”). The fundamental difference? Instead of tomato juice, they are made with Clamato juice. Yes, that is a portmanteau of “clam” and “tomato”. I don’t know you guys drink that stuff down south. Also included are worcestershire sauce, tabasco, salt and pepper, and other variable ingredients. Caesars are spicy, savoury drinks, usually garnished with a stalk of celery or a pickled bean. There is also a virgin version, which is just the same drink without the vodka.
Caesars were invented in Calgary in the 60′s after Walter Chell tried a clam and tomato sauce pasta dish in Italy, and thought it would make a great drink flavour for his new restaurant. That italian inspiration is apparently why it’s called a caesar. Is that something I would have thought of while eating clams and spaghetti? No, but 350 million of the things are consumed in Canada every year, so what the hell do I know?
Now, the amount of calories in a caesar is highly variable, so make it how I tell you! At the low end, they are around 150 calories. At the high end, they can be close to 400. The difference is in the amount of clamato juice and the type of vodka.
To make this drink your own, here is what you will need:
80-proof vodka (100-proof is too high calorie)
A few millimetres of lemon juice in a bowl
Celery salt in a bowl
Dip your glass into the lemon juice, then into the celery salt to salt the rim
Put some ice in the glass
Add one ounce of vodka (66 calories)
Add seven ounces of clamato juice (97 calories)
Stir it all up!
Add your sauces and salt and pepper. This is to personal taste. People generally say “a dash” of each, but experiment with it and see what tastes best to you. You can also add some lemon juice to the drink, if you feel like it.
Garnish with a stalk of healthy celery, a bean, or asparagus. It’s nice when a drink comes with a snack and an edible stir stick!
An extra tidbit? Caesars are widely touted as a hangover cure. I don’t know if there’s any truth to that, but a study done by the University of Toronto in 1985 suggested that drinking caesars when taking aspirin can protect your stomach from the harsh effects of aspirin. See? It’s good for you!