I’m As Comfortable As My Drink: A Basil Hayden’s Valentine’s Day Cocktail

Let’s discuss what real comfort is.  With Valentine’s Day on the horizon, some of us may choose to sit up in bed, gleefully watch and embrace it as it comes over the horizon. However, there are also those of us who would rather pull the covers over our heads and rouse ourselves from a too-long slumber well after the horizon, high noon and sunset has taken place.  For whatever motivates, thrills, ails, or annoys you about Valentine’s Day, take comfort in this fact. Whether you are with the one you love, searching for that one you love, crying over that one you love or in a great place not having to deal with love at the moment, there’s comfort to be had.  That comfort comes in a glass of Basil Hayden’s Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. Isn’t it funny how when we’re sad, we drink. When we’re depressed, we drink.  Lonely?  Pour me a glass! On the prowl? Fill’er up!  In love, ‘how about we share a glass’? Content, ‘then pour a glass to celebrate my life’.

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Comfort foods are supposed to be looked upon as enjoyable little fattening concoctions with not much thought given to waistlines and gym memberships.  So while they don’t consider certain pleasantries of life, they do still bear the moniker of comfort. That also makes me ask that if we don’t find little bits of enjoyment every now within the disciplines and abandonments in life, is it still living?

Dave, Basil and Toddy's Somalian Retreat

So for Valentine’s Day, I thought I’d share my own Basil Hayden’s recipe for two memorable points of comfort I had this winter.  In late 2015 I enjoyed the most amazing hot toddy in Midtown and last month I had a delightful culinary experience with a Somalian tea in Harlem.  So when thinking of my profound bachelorhood this Valentine’s Day it made me realize that in the downtime between relationships while you’re getting to know yourself again, you find those times to teach, enlighten pamper and comfort yourself through discipline, introspection and of course dining.

I call this “Dave, Basil & Toddy’s Somalian Retreat”

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2 ounces Basil Hayden’s Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Why:  It’s a great bourbon when spiciness and a full-bodied flavor profile that really enhances a toddy
1 Tablespoon of Coconut Sugar
Why:  I didn’t want it too sweet and I find that honey sometimes overpowers
1 cup of hot water
1 Fresh nutmeg grated to a pinch
2 -3 Cloves
1/4 – 1/2 Teaspoon of Cardamom
1 Fresh Cinnamon stick grated to a small pinch
Fresh Ginger grated to a pinch
2 Tablespoons of Milk
1 Lemon
Why: The presence of lemon & milk will curdle, so the lemon is here mainly for a little bit of the zest)
Black tea bag
Add the boiling hot water to a cup then add the Basil Hayden’s Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey.  Next add in your nutmeg, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, and ginger.  Stir then add sugar, more or less to taste and milk and stir again.  Finally, run your lemon over your zester 2-3 times, throw in the grated cinnamon stick and the tea bag and you’re done.  (The tea bag is really just to slowly permeate through the toddy with an intensifying flavor/garnish).

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I’m no chef or mixologist, but I am an avid foodie and do relish in a nice flavor profile and I really enjoyed my Basil Hayden’s “comfortable” little mash-up of my favorite comfort drinks this season.  With whatever or whoever you’re doing this Valentine’s Day or this winter, may it bring you comfort enough to either land a screw or be just fine with screwing the 14th.

As always please remember to drink responsibly. 

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