The saccharine, chocolate-coated schmaltzfest that is Valentine’s Day is nigh, and whether you’re blissfully relationship-ed or merrily single, there’s no avoiding Cupid’s crimson tidal wave of love and consumerism. Given our reputation for coping-via-cocktails, we’ve crafted a selection of libations to assure that couples get laid, and those enjoying singledom get buzzed enough to write cathartic hate mail to their exes or wander into the street and canoodle with a stranger. Eros, let the arrows fly.
Chocolate Cherry Bomb
2 oz. Red pepper vodka 2 oz. Godiva chocolate liqueur 1/2 Tsp. Sriracha hot sauce 1 Tbsp. chocolate syrup Splash of grenadine
Garnish: pepper-vodka marinated cherry hot pepper
Sweet, sexy and… Sriracha sauce? Trust us, this will turn up the heat on the iciest of hearts. In a shaker filled with ice, add the red pepper vodka, chocolate liqueur, Sriracha hot sauce, grenadine, and chocolate syrup. Shake well and pour into an elegant glass. Garnish with a speared spicy cherry and a dried hot pepper, then watch the love flow…
Nutty Caramel Bonbon
1 oz. spiced rum 1 oz. Irish cream 1 oz. Frangelico hazelnut liqueur Chocolate bonbon for garnish
To drive your date, um, nuts, shake rum, Irish cream and hazelnut liqueur over ice and pour into an up-glass. Make a slice halfway through a bonbon, and perch on the edge of the glass. Sip, and flash those bedroom eyes you’ve been practicing in the mirror.
Red Velvet Cupcake
2 oz. vanilla vodka 1 oz. creme de cacao 1 oz. buttermilk 1 tbsp. chocolate sauce 3 drops red food coloring 8 drops of vanilla extract Cream cheese frosting for rim
Why bake a cupcake when you can drink one? Add vodka, creme de cacao, buttermilk, three drops of red food coloring, and vanilla extract to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and pour into a glass rimmed with frosting. Toast to love, romance, and imminent diabetes.
2 oz. floral gin (like Hendrick’s or Bombay Sapphire) ½ oz. raspberry liqueur 1 drop rose water Splash soda water Edible flower for garnish
In a shaker with ice, add the gin, raspberry liqueur, and a drop or two of rose water. Shake vigorously and pour into a delicate glass, then top with a splash of soda water and float an edible flower on top. Note: If your date says the drink reminds him/her of their mother’s perfume and begins crying, make an excuse to end the evening early, and proceed to our “Stiff & Bitter” cocktail.
Stiff & Bitter
8 oz. hot chamomile tea 2 oz. honey bourbon (or more, no one’s judging you) 1 tbsp. honey Dash of bitters 12 cats Old pajamas
Pour boiling water in a mug with a bag of chamomile tea. Let steep for a few minutes, then add the honey, bourbon, and bitters. Stir and gulp, then pet all your cats and tell them how much they mean to you, and that you’ll never be alone because you have Mr. Whiskers, whose love is unconditional and emotionally non-threatening. Next, watch a marathon of Jennifer Aniston movies.
Alie Ward and Georgia Hardstark met at a dive bar in the L.A. neighborhood of Echo Park and write the cocktail-focused website Alie and Georgia. Alie shares her love for art, trends, restaurants, and nightlife as a Los Angeles Times staff writer and as an on-air correspondent for KTLA-TV. Georgia has written for publications like Anthem magazine and contributes the This Recording. Join them online as they shake up the cocktail scene with the second season of their Web series, Drinks with Alie & Georgia, on Food2.com.