Not something we commonly celebrate down here in the South, Sweetest Day (3rd Saturday of October) is one of those holidays you tend to hear about at the last minute and assume that it’s some trumped-up corporate money-grab by the candy and card companies.

Turns out, there’s a little more to it than that (thank goodness).

Back in the 1920s a group of confectioners (candy makers) in Cleveland, Ohio, got together and decided to give candy to “newsboys, orphans, old folks and the poor” (The Cleveland Plain Dealer, via Wikipedia). On the one hand it does seem a little odd to be giving candy out to folks who could likely use other, more substantial, gifts, on the other hand we all know how nice it is to buy or receive something absolutely frivolous–even in otherwise dire circumstances.

Sweetest Day Editorial, 1922, Cleveland Plain Dealer

So, yes, it’s corporate, but it was done with an eye towards philanthropy it would seem. Take that for what you will.

Having learned a little more about it, I see it on the level of Valentine’s Day–optional if both you and your partner agree to skip it, but nice to have the reminder to express gratitude to friends, family, and loved ones*.

So in honor of the confectionery delights that started that Sweetest Day of the Year back in 1922, I’m transforming my Candy Bar Shot into a full-fledged cocktail.

Candy Coated Cocktail

Candy Coated Cocktail

1 1/2 oz Irish Cream Liqueur
1 oz Whipped Cream Vodka
3/4 oz Butterscotch Schanpps
1/2 oz Godiva Chocolate Liqueur
1/4 oz Frangelico Hazelnut Liqueur

Drizzle a chilled cocktail glass with some extra chocolate liqueur or chocolate syrup and place back into the fridge while you mix up the cocktail.

Combine all of the ingredients over ice in a mixing glass and stir until until nice and frosty. Strain into the prepared cocktail glass and garnish with something sweet.

Now, this is solidly alcoholic and solidly sweet. And, yet, it’s not too sweet or too strong to prevent you from enjoying it. It’s a wonderful dessert drink.

*Yes, we should always appreciate those important to us and shouldn’t need to set aside a single day where the value of our love is measured by gifts, etc. But we get busy. And we take people for granted. And sometimes we need a reminder as subtle as a sledgehammer to remember why we like having these people in our lives and that it’s worth celebrating these moments together. And I don’t give a flying flip about your over-commercialization rant.


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