Ippudo. A Japanese Style Refreshment.


Every Sunday, my good friend and I meet up in the late afternoon for a tradition we have dubbed “Ramen Sunday.”  This past Sunday was no different and since I had plenty of time before we had arranged to meet at our usual spot, I took a leisurely walk through the East Village.  It was an incredibly hot and humid day so by the time I arrived, I was rather – shall we say – glowing.  I bellied up to the bar in need of a drink and to my surprise and delight, I found Ippudo’s Bloody Marichan.  Perfect! The ingredients listed under the Bloody Marichan included vodka, cucumber infused sake, tomato juice, Worcestershire sauce, Japanese spices, Tabasco, black pepper and lemon.  The main thing I noticed upon taking the first cooling sip was that this drink was extremely lemony.  Typically, I enjoy the sourness that the citrus garnish provides and will always put a little spritz into my bloody mary.  However, I skipped it this time as the lemon was just too overpowering.  I wanted to taste the cucumber infused sake, but unfortunately, it was just too darn lemony to distinguish.  Another first impression was that this was a very thin drink.  I don’t think I’ve ever had one this thin.  I am guessing this was due to the fact that both vodka and sake and not quite enough Worcestershire sauce were used in the making of it.  On any other day, points certainly would have been deducted because of this; however, given my (ahem) condition, it was actually really refreshing and not at all disappointing.

The spice level was nearly perfection.  When given a stir, you could see the Japanese spices floating around, in addition to the light dusting given across the top.  A slight tingle was left on my lips afterwards, but it didn’t damage the flavor by being excessive.  I wondered to myself, however, why they didn’t use fresh wasabi rather than prepared horseradish.  But then perhaps that would have been too intense.

Overall, this was a satisfying and refreshing drink on a hot day when maybe the last thing you would want to drink is rich, thick bloody mary.   The flavors were light and the spice just right.  I give Ippudo’s Bloody Marichan a 4 Celery Stalk rating.

Ippudo 65 4th Avenue,  New York, New York 10003.  T: (212) 388-0088.

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