Everyone’s had a Valentine’s Day that just sucks.
It’s raining. You’re broke. You’re broken up with. You’re broken. We’ve all had it happen.
There was that one time when we were broke, living with 3 other people, and had to decide which couple got to stay home and cook and be interrupted by our single housemate every time she went to the bathroom, and which couple had to go out and pay for an overpriced pre-fixe meal, surrounded by the sad faces of obligation and disappointed hopes on every side.
Then there was that other time that one of us broke up with their girlfriend on Valentine’s Day… (cough cough, Shawn Michael). Poor kids.
We started doing Valentine’s Day right a few years ago. It happened when we decided that Valentine’s Day, as traditionally envisioned (and marketed), is for the dogs. At least for us. One year we just grabbed Burger Lounge and watched a movie. Other years, it was a big fat steak and martini at home. We like to go out too, but most years we ignore the 14th entirely, and go out later when the fuss is over.
Sitting at the bar is one of our favorites. Yes, even for Valentines Day.
Shake yourself up every now and then. Do something different. And if you don’t have a date this year, that’s no excuse. Self-care is important. It’s refreshing, like the Kodak Hula Show, a beautiful Valentine’s Day tiki cocktail by Stephen Kurpinsky:
The Kodak Hula Show is a complex, umami-ridden, not-too-sweet tiki cocktail. And we think it’s a perfect one-up to the usual pink drinks you might find out this month. It’s on the Rare Hearts pop-up menu at Hundred Proof in San Diego. Nonstop flights to America’s Finest City are arriving daily…
If you’re really stuck at home, the only excuse you might legitimately have for not making this cocktail is not having Lemongrass Cordial or Barrel Rested Soy Sauce on hand… but you’re not off the hook. Cordials are relatively straightforward to make at home. This one is made with lemongrass stalks steeped in simple syrup and a touch of citric acid (add a bit of neutral grain spirit to help stabilize it). And just google “barrel aged soy sauce” and you’ll find a few sources for that. Kurpinsky uses Copalli, a Belizean Rum, but I’m guessing you could use a good quality light rum if you can’t find Copalli.
Here’s the printable recipe for those who want to turn a soggy Valentine’s Day into a happy memory:
Makes: 1 cocktail
Kodak Hula Show
prep time: 5 minutes cook time: 0 minutes total time: 5 minutes A sublime cocktail from Stephen Kurpinsky at Hundred Proof in San Diego. This cocktail was created for the 2019 Valentine’s Day Menu, and includes ginkgo biloba, a known aphrodisiac. Asian elements like lemongrass and soy sauce add delightful complexity and umami flavors to this rum-based tiki drink
- 2 oz Copalli Rum
- 1 oz fresh lemon juice
- ¾ oz lemongrass cordial
- ¼ oz honey
- 1 barspoon barrel fermented soy sauce
- 4 drops ginkgo biloba
- 2 dashes tiki bitters
- Add the rum, lemon juice, lemongrass cordial, honey, soy sauce, and ginkgo biloba to a shaker tin; fill with pebble ice.
- Shake to chill and dilute.
- Pour into a hurricane glass or tiki mug, top with pebble ice
- Garnish with the tiki bitters and mint that you’ve slapped around a bit against the rim of the cocktail glass
Don’t let this Valentine’s Day get the better of you. And with a cocktail like this in hand, how could you miss?