Brucie is a restaurant in Brooklyn, New York, that has been around for five and half years. Valentine's Day has always been the biggest night of the year for us. Not because we capitalized on the clichés but because we made it a crazy fun party night that didn't necessarily have anything to do with romance. This year, it will also be Brucie's final night on earth, and we are throwing the biggest party ever for our loyal fans to commemorate and celebrate the end of our five-and-a-half year relationship. It will be bittersweet, so we've been thinking about what the day really means.
Oh, Valentine's Day, that notorious harbinger of broken hearts, broken condoms, broken car windows, and early onset diabetes. You know when it's coming. You see the chocolate, the cupids, the heart-shaped everything, and the pounds of delicious garbage candy in fifty thousand shades of pink cat-calling you every time you enter the local drugstore. It's a magical time of year when a girl can't go get tampons without getting smacked in the face with a shiny pink Justin Bieber mylar balloon.
For women there's the added pressure to choose whether to celebrate or ignore it, to shave your pubes to resemble a lovers initials, to remain a composed and studious seventh grader while desperately hoping your crush delivers a valentine, or to ignore it altogether in hopes of being considered romantically indifferent and above it all like Ruth Bader Ginsberg. We are expected to eat an entire box of chocolates, or a dozen oysters, or edible underwear, or some duck confit, but not too much, because after all, this is our day to shine in the sack, and not from duck fat.
So what would it look like if we gave up on these pressures and took the air out of the heart-shaped balloon in a way that redirects the conversation to self-love rather than self-loathing? If we leave the red pig Beanie Babies and unfulfilled expectations back at the CVS, we can re-imagine February 14 as the day that celebrates the loves in our lives, for ourself and for others. The truth is that the person who has been with you since the beginning, laughs at all of your jokes, understands your bizarre internal dialogue, likes you even when you are mean, and knows exactly how to get you off is…well, YOU! People will come and go in your life but you are guaranteed to be around to cherish and love yourself until your dying day. And that's pretty damn romantic.
So we want to share with you the things, well, the foods, that would make our own personal Valentine's Day better. Some of us would whole-heartedly embrace the cliché and enjoy a $100 prix-fixe dinner with molten chocolate cake. Some of us would get a little tipsy and cook and eat coq au vin for two, alone in our pajamas with our cat. Some of us will make nachos with our magical friends while admiring that giant-haired goddess Julia Roberts in Mystic Pizza. Some of us will eat an entire pint of ice cream in the bathtub, and some of the more adventurous of us will do nothing at all. But enough about us, we want to know what you'll be doing! And as an inspiration, here are some of our favorite recipes. Happy Valentine's Day to You and to Me and to Us!
Drunk AF Chicken for Two - AKA Coq Au Vin