Date night can be stressful. Between deciding what to wear, where to go and what to talk about all evening, the pressure can put a strain on what should be a good time. We recommend kicking things off with a little liquid courage to relieve some of the tension. Here, the best date night cocktails that are easy enough to make at home, but elegant enough to impress a date.
The Best Date Night Cocktails
Presentation is everything, especially when it comes to a classic like the Martini. At Sauvage in Brooklyn, bartender Will Elliott serves his with a sidecar of garnishes for a beautiful choose-your-own-adventure-style drinking experience. It’s the perfect way to get to know your date better.
Gin De Mahon
Luli Moscato Chinato
The combination of red wine, chocolate and homemade whipped cream is more than enough to get anyone’s engine revving. We suggest serving this after a day on the slopes or sledding with your sweetheart. It’ll warm you from the inside out. Sprinkle red velvet cake crumbles on top for an extra indulgence.
You can’t go wrong with a classic like the Old Fashioned. Tailor the whiskey to your date’s preferences by choosing bourbon for a sweeter drink or rye for a spicier sipper. You’ll look classy as hell stirring one up.
This refreshing take on the classic Caipirinha is perfect for cooling off on a hot day or steamy summer night. Banana liqueur and a banana-lime puree give it a fresh, fruity taste that isn’t overly sweet.
Our version of the Chocolate Martini has nothing to do with the cloyingly sweet drink from the ‘90s. It’s made with a homemade chocolate liqueur, which gets some sweetness from vanilla and demarara sugar, but packs a bitter punch thanks to cacoa nibs. Chocolate is an aphrodisiac and this drink is downright addicting, so you do the math.
Offering your date a big spoon of briny, expensive caviar is a drop the mic move. But sometimes you have to ball on a budget, which is why we enlisted the help of bartender Anthony Bohlinger to create a cocktail made with affordable roe instead. The combination of salty fish roe and sweet chocolate liqueur will send your tastebuds into overdrive, and your date will be beyond impressed by the over-the-top presentation.
If you’re in the mood for an extra strong cocktail that’s not a Martini, whip up a couple of Prospectors. It’s a boozy variation of the Manhattan that swaps Averna amaro for sweet vermouth and dry sherry for bitters. It’s a perfect drink for cozying up on the couch in front of a movie.
Pedro Ximénez sherry
Every date night should be a celebration, and there’s no better way to get festive than with a glass of bubbles. Instead of pouring straight Champagne, whip up something stronger like a French 75. The classic gets a kick from gin and a little tang from lemon juice, while simple syrup offers a touch of sweetness.