It’s so important to keep romance in your life, especially when you’re married, writes Tony Greenway. That’s what my wife and I believe, anyway; so every week we take the time to go to a little restaurant we like, to make the most of the candlelight, romantic music and smoochy atmosphere. I go Wednesdays, she goes Fridays. Ha ha! Only joking, of course. (And please don’t tell her I said that).

But we do enjoy a cocktail whenever we get the chance, because... well... it’s always five o’clock somewhere. Plus there’s something quite decadent about them, and something quite powerful too, like the one I tried to make at Christmas. Notice I say ‘tried.’ It’s more difficult than it looks and was so blisteringly lethal and eye-wateringly strong that I couldn’t drink it, so I added a little bit of vinegar and we used it to clean the sink and worktops instead. You should have seen the shine on the taps.

My advice: go with people who know what they’re doing and can really shake a mean drink. Also, with Valentine’s Day just around the corner, it’s best to order a cocktail with some fizz and passion, that’s been lovingly made by the experts in a high-end, glamorous setting. Go down market and the names of the cocktails can be a bit off putting and not very romantic. You know the ones I mean. They usually involve walls or beaches.

So if you want to get all flirty over a glass or two of something long and alcoholic (hold the fruit), here are my glamorous cocktail spot recommendations...

The Queen o’t’owd Thatch, South Milford

The wonderfully named The Queen o’t’owd Thatch is, essentially, a pub but, of course, not just any old pub. The excellent menus are creative and big on local produce and the team behind the scenes strongly believes in making sure you get the right drink with your food. They’re serious about this as their awesome selection of pre-dinner, mid-dinner, post-dinner and non-alcoholic cocktails proves.

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