Edit ModuleShow Tags

8 Valentine’s Day Cocktails to Fall in Love With

Skip the Champagne and go with one of these instead


Level 2's Oro Rosa cocktail | Photo: Brogan Jessup

A number of bars and restaurants are serving up creative cocktails befitting the holiday. Here are six that got my attention.


Oro Rosa @ George’s at the Cove / Level 2

Back in December, on San Diego Magazine’s convivial Happy Half Hour podcast, Troy Johnson and I sang the praises of George’s at the Cove’s Stephen Kurpinsky. Try one of the highlights of his newest menu, made with rose-infused mezcal, smoked lime, maraschino liqueur, Green Chartreuse, and a gentian root tincture.


Heart Shaped Glass @ Campfire

Campfire’s Leigh Lecap makes some tasty cocktails using charred and roasted veggies. This one—made with white rum, roasted beets, Crème de Cacao, lemon, and strawberry, with black sesame garnish—hits all the right notes.

Campfire's Heart Shaped Glass


Man of His Word @ The Nolen

Grab a rooftop seat and sip on this rich, spiced cocktail made with bourbon, Luxardo maraschino liqueur, allspice, cinnamon, rosemary, and chocolate bitters.


Hot in the Dark @ True Food Kitchen

True Food’s offering a special V-Day menu February 10-14. I’m a sucker for anything served in a coupe glass. Add a little heat, even better. This twist on a Paloma is made with Ixá organic tequila, jalapeño, lime, and pomegranate juice.


Rose & Crown @ Bankers Hill

Two words: pistachio orgeat. Tiki cocktails’ secret ingredient—pronounced or-zha—is usually made with almonds and orange-flower water. Here, Bar Manager Zack Gray uses pistachios and rosewater for an orgeat that he adds to gin and fresh lemon juice for a tasty take on a classic Army & Navy cocktail.


Crime of Passion @ Sycamore Den

Two more words: passion fruit. It’s a magical ingredient. Jesse Ross’s gin-based cocktail (which also includes orgeat), gets some kick from a sprinkle of cayenne.


Dirty Cuddle Tini @ Ironside

Meagan Crumpley’s special Valentine’s Day dirty martini is served jet-black, thanks to cuddle fish ink. Consortium Holdings beverage director Anthony Schmidt describes it as "equal parts bizarre and legendary."


El Pinar @ Starlite

One of four special Valentine's Day cocktails by the dynamic bartending duo of Dmitri Dziensuwski and Jack Reynolds, this one is made with mezcal, Ancho Reyes, Licor 43, and lime.

Got ideas for a future post? Write 2kellydavis@gmail.com.

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Related Stories

Looking Back at Soul Coughing’s 'Ruby Vroom'

The supremely weird, extremely fun album holds up after 25 years

‘Angels in America’ Is the Best Thing I’ve Seen So Far This Year

Cygnet Theatre proves that the two-part epic is as awesome and resonant today as it was in 1993

Restaurants Are Dying; Here’s the Solution

It’s simple math, but the state of California refuses to allow it
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags


Whale Watching Report from Hornblower for March 6–12

Whale watchers get their fill of gray whales, dolphins, and more

Shaping San Diego 2019

San Diego is a premier catalyst for innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurialism
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. Vote Now for San Diego's Best Restaurants 2019
    From pho to fries, you can choose San Diego's best eats and drinks in 99 categories
  2. Puesto's Next Top Taco
    Submit your best taco recipe for the chance to win a grand prize
  3. Best Restaurants in San Diego: 2018
    San Diego's top restaurant owners, chefs, and bartenders name their favorite San Diego restaurants of 2018.
  4. The Best Soup Dumplings in San Diego
    My hunt for the best xiao long bao in the city unearthed two surprising winners
  5. Behind the Brands 2019
  6. 21 Ultimate Road Trip Itineraries from San Diego
    These getaways will take you through California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, and Mexico
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module