What’s even better than strawberries dipped in chocolate? Valentine’s Day cocktails of course! Whether you’re planning a romantic night on the town with your very own Christian Grey or a “Fifty Shades of Grey” movie night in with the girls, delicious cocktails are must. Here’s a few aphrodisiac recipes bound to awaken your inner Anastasia Steele.
2 oz. Van Gogh Acai-Blueberry
4 oz. Pink Lemonade
Serve on the rocks
Pour vodka into a rocks glass with ice and top with pink lemonade. Garnish with an arrow, created by a cocktail pick with blueberries and small strawberry ‘arrow’ on the tip.
1 ½ oz. Van Gogh Coconut
½ oz. Vanilla liqueur
½ oz. Orange syrup*
Splash of Rosé Champagne
1 Chocolate covered strawberry
Muddle strawberries with the syrup, add ice, vodka and liqueur. Shake and strain into a martini glass. Top with Champagne. Garnish with chocolate covered strawberry. (*Orange syrup: 1 cup orange juice to 1 ½ cups sugar. Boil until dissolved, let cool)
1 oz. Van Gogh Espresso
1 oz. Chocolate liqueur
1 oz. White Chocolate liqueur
Splash of cream
Pour ingredients in a shaker over ice. Shake and serve in a chilled martini glass.
I love a good cocktail just as much as any blue blooded New Yorker. In the city that never sleeps and never drives, we take the after work cocktail to another level making Manhattan just as much a drink as it is an island. At the age of 26, I’m slowly becoming a more sophisticated drinker which is why I recommend reading The Socialite’s Guide To: Choosing The Right Cocktail by Cristal Carrington, Cocktail Columnist for Examiner.com and Washington D.C. Socialite.
The book serves as a guide to personal branding that profiles the 5 different types of female drinkers (The Party Animal, The Conservative, The Maverick, The Light-Weight, and The Connoisseur) explaining the messages they are unconsciously sending when socializing at bars, restaurants, and parties based on their drink choices while a tequila drinker can be seen as a party girl, a champagne drinker such as myself can be viewed as an elitist. For the young and ambitious professional looking to make a positive impression at upcoming holiday parties, The Socialite’s Guide To: Choosing The Right Cocktail is a must-read. Aside from great advice on personal branding and finding your signature drink, Carrington also provides excellent drink recipes that I can’t wait to try.
Keep reading for my exclusive cocktail Q&A with Cristal Carrington:
What should you drink when you have top shelf taste on a waist-high budget?
My best advice for ladies or gents on a budget when at the bar is:
Step #1: Order a shot of chilled vodka or gin (order the drink in a snifter, so you can still look classy, however, don’t throw it back, savor it).
Step #2: Follow up with a glass of Pinot Grigio or Riesling with a splash of Chambord. The trick is to look great while drinking, not necessarily to get drunk in public.
Belvedere or Grey Goose?
Definitely Grey Goose, but I also recommend the always delicious and timeless brand Stolichnaya.
You certainly seem to have a dream job as the Cocktail Columnist for Examiner.com. How did you land such a great gig?
In graduate school at Georgetown, I came up on an opening for writers with Examiner. I originally wanted to be a food writer, but the position was already filled. I had to think about what I liked as much as food and the answer was cocktails, so I applied with a lengthy article application and landed the gig. I thought, now I have a license to drink all the best cocktail creations and couldn’t be happier with the choice.
Since I prefer the finer things in life, my go-to drink is champagne. But, if you were to make an Aspiring Socialite cocktail, what would be the recipe?
A great Aspiring Socialite cocktail would have to be a creation that a bartender made for me on a whim called The Thing: (feel free to call it A Socialite Thing or Glamorous Thing or whatever)…but it contains:
Cherry Vodka, Cranberry Juice, and Ginger Ale
I like it because it was easy to make, tastes great, is unisex, and certainly not hard on the Aspiring Socialite’s pockets.
To make the perfect cocktail, what is the ideal amount of times liquor should be distilled?
I like any liquor distilled over 3 times and if we are speaking of aged liquors anything over 10 years is acceptable. I think at that point the liquor can be consumed neat or mixed. Also, don’t be afraid to ask what the rail liquor is at the bar. Often times, it is a quality brand; it’s just not Ciroc or Patron. Last note on this is to remember that the higher quality the brand, the less likely you are going to want to dilute it with additives such as juices and liqueurs. This rule includes Champagne.
Can people fall into more than one drinking category?
Absolutely! I personally fall into the Maverick/Connoisseur category. However, I tend to lean more to the side of the Maverick. The categories listed in The Socialite’s Guide To: Choosing The Right Cocktail were simply ways to identify stronger drinking habits/patterns. There is nothing wrong with any of them as I do offer ways for all the personality types to strengthen and refine their behaviors, even the Connoisseur who seems to do no wrong in their own eyes