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Men of the world, do yourself a favor this Valentine’s Day: Leave the Champagne on the shelf. Even dry Champagnes give you a killer hangover, and they have all the romance of a box of drugstore chocolates. Still get those flowers, but be a little more creative with your choice of liquid courage.

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1. The Notorious F.I.G.

rye and Campari cocktail with fig jam

Nerds with Knives

For the girl just not that into big, plastic-wrapped bouquets of red roses and baby’s breath. Who wouldn’t be thrilled to walk in the door and see this boozy blend of rye, Campari, lemon juice, and fig jam waiting? Get the The Notorious F.I.G. recipe.

2. Pomegranate Gin & Tonic

pomegranate gin and tonic recipe

Simply Scratch

This aesthetically appropriate drink not only is the perfect balance of sweet and sour, but also boasts possibly the greatest thing to happen to ice since the sphere: tonic cubes. Get the Pomegranate Gin & Tonic recipe.

3. Framboise Floats

framboise lambic float recipe

Take a Megabite

Part dessert, part cocktail, this delicious concoction is only two ingredients, and with the wide varieties of framboise available, it can be as sugary-sweet or puckeringly tangy as you want it to be. Get the Framboise Floats recipe.

4. Blood Orange Margaritas

skinny blood orange margarita recipe

Cookie + Kate

Take advantage of the gorgeous citrus this season and make up a wintry take on the margarita. Since it’s sugar free, you’ll be able to indulge in that big heart-shaped box of chocolate you bought yourself. Get the Blood Orange Margaritas recipe.

5. Femme Fatale

sparkling strawberry cocktail with limoncello


Great for a V-Day get together, this punch is both inexpensive (thanks to its cava base) and quick to make. Be careful though: Those red berries mask the hit of limoncello. Get our Femme Fatale recipe.

6. Little Pink Pearl

non-alcoholic drink mocktail recipe


Mocktails can be just as complex (and intoxicating, at least when it comes to flavor). The balance between the rich orgeat syrup (made from almonds) and the tart grapefruit gives this nonalcoholic drink a unique flavor and gorgeous color. Just be sure to hunt down good-quality orgeat—as with most Valentine’s-related purchases, this is no time to skimp! Get our Little Pink Pearl recipe.

7. Black Rose

wine cocktail recipe


Why choose between wine and mixed drinks? Wine cocktails are a fantastic middle ground. Here, vodka, muddled blackberries, and rosé bring some summer heat to the table this Valentine’s Day. Get the Black Rose recipe.

8. The Aphrodite

vermouth cocktail recipe


Dry and sweet vermouths are balanced by creamy sherry, a tart orange twist, and bitters in this warm, rich cocktail perfect for a chilly February evening. Get the The Aphrodite recipe.

9. French 75

French 75 Champagne cocktail recipe


If you must do bubbly for Valentine’s Day, do a French 75. Our recipe gives you the option of white or brown sugar, and gin or brandy. Heavy artillery, indeed. Get the French 75 recipe.

Got an unquenchable thirst for cocktails? Check out these complex cocktails you can make as a couple (or platonic team), chocolate cocktails for Valentine’s Day, and the most romantic cocktail ingredients for bewitching sips.

Visit our Valentine’s Day headquarters for more tips, tricks, and recipes (plus great Valentine’s Day gift ideas, including some last-minute options).

Related Video: How to Make a Valentine’s Day Dinner with Kombucha

All featured products are curated independently by our editors. When you buy something through our retail links, we may receive a commission. For more great hand-picked products, check out the Chowhound Shop.

Kelley Peters is a Brooklyn-based wine writer and educator. She still sometimes gets confused in wine shops.

Header image by Chowhound.

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