Food & Drink

Sip on This: Valentine’s Day Cocktail Ideas

Wherever you go, whatever you do, AJ has a drink for you

By AJ Rathbun February 8, 2017


The heart-iest moment of the year is just a few days away, and you don’t want to be caught without the right romantic drink. But it’s not just about the drink—it’s about the atmosphere and naturally about doing something sweet with your significant (or want-to-be-significant) other. With all that loveliness in mind, here are two drinks suggestions if you’re spending an evening out on the town, one idea for staying in and a special cocktail class if you’re an activity couple.

The Silk Road at Foreign National: There’s something delightfully coy about this cocktail’s name. Though of course it refers historically to the trade network across Asia, the nature of silk as a luxurious fabric used often in under garments adds a slightly flirty edge. The drink reflects the legacy of its name, with multiple rums, Asian spice pandan, ginger, curry and then rich coconut cream. Smooth stuff. This Capitol Hill bar is also a great rendezvous, dimly lit, with a cozy, slightly exotic nature.

The Wasp’s Sting at Rob Roy: Love isn’t always smooth and silky, however. Sometimes, it’s fiery and passionate and perhaps even a little dangerous, which is where my other Valentine’s-drink-out comes into your date night. Here, Reposado tequila, lemon, honey and a hint of cilantro are mingled with Bittermens Hellfire shrub, made with the powerfully piquant habanero pepper. Sometimes, love hurts! But the low lights and 1950s lounge vibe at this most-classic Belltown bar never hurts, and definitely helps if you’re in for a night of batting eyelashes at each other. 


Couples Cocktail Class at Young American Ale House: For those wanting to do something beyond dinner and drinks, there’s a special mixology class this Saturday, February 11, from 1 to 3 at Ballard’s Young American Ale House. Taught by the restaurant’s general manager Kurt Argys and bartender Karen Johnson, these starry-eyed two hours will begin with some bubbly, along with light snacks and Theo’s Chocolates, and then its happy couples get to learn to make three delicious cocktails using spirited stalwarts bourbon, vodka and more. It’s almost like having two Valentine’s Days, because you can re-create the drinks on the 14th. That’s double the love! The class is $75 per person, and you can make reservations at or by calling 206-706-2977.

Valentine’s Slumber at Your House: If you’re wanting to stay in and get really cuddly on the couch so you can just gaze into each other’s eyes without worrying about any other folks around you, then this effervescent number from Champagne Cocktails makes for a nice accompaniment. It has a continental flair, too, with French apply brandy Calvados and Italian red frizzante wine Lambrusco. The below recipe serves two, because you shouldn’t ever drink this alone.

Valentine’s Slumber recipe

4 peach slices
1/2 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
Ice cubes
1-1/2 ounces apricot brandy
2 ounce Calvados
4 dashes orange bitters
Chilled Lambrusco

1. Place the peach slices and lemon juice into a cocktail shaker. Using a muddler or leftover arrow from cupid’s quiver, muddle well.
2. Fill the shaker halfway full with ice cubes. Add the apricot brandy, Calvados, and orange bitters. Shake well.
3. Fill two highball glasses three-quarters full with ice cubes. Strain the mixture through a fine strainer over the ice, equally into the glasses. Fill each glass almost to the rim with Lambrusco. Stir carefully. Serve!

Follow Us

Renewal at the Farm Table

Renewal at the Farm Table

Enjoy spring's bounty at these Pacific Northwest farm-to-table restaurants

In the Pacific Northwest, spring brings the early beginnings of new life. It is a fleeting yet fruitful season as the long, damp winters of the Northwest slowly warm up and dry out, yet embody the misty, lush terrain characteristic of the region. Greens begin to grow, halibut and salmon return to the rivers, lamb

Up-N-Down For In-N-Out?

Up-N-Down For In-N-Out?

Would you drive to Ridgefield for this exalted burger?

I was at my favorite burger spot last weekend (more on that later) when the subject of In-N-Out Burger inevitably came up. You’re a rock-residing recluse if you haven’t heard that the ridiculously popular burger joint is considering opening its first location in Washington state.

‘The Lunchbox’

‘The Lunchbox’

Luke Kolpin brings a sense of experimentation and whimsy to his work at Cedar + Elm

Would you try salted caramel ice cream with hints of mushroom? How about pumpkin with a drizzle of seaweed oil? Chef Luke Kolpin, head chef at Cedar + Elm, located within The Lodge at St. Edward State Park in Kenmore, hopes you’ll give some unexpected flavor combos a try. Photo courtesy of The Lodge at

Seattle Restaurant Week Starts Sunday

Seattle Restaurant Week Starts Sunday

Get some great deals while supporting favorite establishments

For two weeks, you can eat your heart out in Seattle and surrounding neighborhoods during Seattle Restaurant Week. From April 14-27, prepare for exclusive, budget-friendly menus at over 200 restaurants throughout the city.