Drinks for home date night

By DANIEL BRISENO dnl.briseno@gmail.com
Posted 1/11/21

Date night is upon us, and the big question is where to go. Maybe Texas Roadhouse or Sushi Umi, Ruth Criss or The Eagles Nest. Those are all good choices but with COVID-19 still running rampant many …

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Drinks for home date night

Posted

Date night is upon us, and the big question is where to go. Maybe Texas Roadhouse or Sushi Umi, Ruth Criss or The Eagles Nest. Those are all good choices but with COVID-19 still running rampant many couples have canceled date nights. With some imagination and a bit of planning, couples can have just as nice a night in the safety of their home as they would by going to any restaurant. Let’s explore a few possibilities to make date night a reality for those who choose to stay home.

A quick trip to the grocery store and then to the local liquor store and couples can easily revive date night. It all starts with a plan. Is it a movie night or a game night? Maybe it is time to listen to music and dance like teenagers again.

Regardless of the choice, add a quick little charcuterie platter and a few cocktails and it may create a date night that will never be forgotten or possibly one reviving something a couple thought was forgotten.

On the quick trip to the local grocery store, pick up some favorite meats like different types of summer sausage, pepperoni, salami or bologna. Yes, bologna. Then on to the cheese. There is such a wide variety of cheeses that the sky is the limit here. Grab some cheddar, provolone, mozzarella, or one of my favorites smoked gouda. The choices are endless.

The date night grocery list should also include some limes, lemon-lime soda and a big can of pineapple rings. At home slice the meats to a personal liking as well as the cheeses and place them on a platter like it is a fancy restaurant. Creative people might cut the cheese into shapes like stars to add a bit of visual pizzazz.

The next stop is the liquor store and again the choices can be overwhelming. The liquor store is not the place to skimp. We have all been told we get what we pay for, and the liquor store is the exact place this happens. A $5 bottle of Boone’s Farm Strawberry Hill has no comparison to an 1874 Lafite Rothschild that sells for $7,500. That exceptional bottle of wine is unobtainable to only but a few, but it is still possible to make tasty cocktails that will jumpstart a date night and take it to the next level without breaking the bank. Just be sure to buy a quality product rather than the least expensive. Pick up a bottle of Midori, blue curacao, coconut rum, a bottle of bitters like Angostura and a good bottle of bourbon.

The first cocktail we venture into is a colorful fruity play that is sure to be an explosion of flavor on the palate. With the melon flavor of the Midori mixed with the coconut rum and the fizz of the lemon-lime soda multiple rounds of a Kermit the Frog becomes a real possibility. This refreshing and fruity cocktail can go into the recipe book and when the pandemic ends it will be a big hit at social gatherings.

The next cocktail quickly transports us from being stuck at home to Hawaii. The Blue Hawaiian is an electric blue cocktail that combines coconut and pineapple flavors to the point that everyone feels like they are on the beach.

One of my favorites is a truly classic bourbon cocktail. Bourbon is not a liquor that is meant to be taken in shots. It is a liquor that is meant to be shared and drank slowly with friends and loved ones. A classic old fashioned is a great way to end the night on a truly high note.

A final stop while shopping for date night is the local five and dime to pick up some glassware to enhance the mood the cocktails will set. Combine the festive glasses, cocktails and the charcuterie plate and not only will it be a hit for the stay-at-home date night, when the pandemic ends the practiced couple will be the talk of the town as hosts.