Hermione Granger knows what’s up.
If you remember, in Harry Potter and the Half-blood Prince, the students learn about Amortentia, an extremely powerful love potion that is supposed to smell like something different for each person.
Hermoine is obviously struck on Ron before she even fully realizes it. In the book, Hermione does not say the third thing she smells. However, in an interview, J.K. Rowling revealed that the third thing Hermione actually smelled was Ron’s hair, but didn’t say that aloud. In the film, she says she smells spearmint toothpaste, because earlier at The Burrow, Ron had told Hermione she had toothpaste on her face. True love, people.
This got me thinking — if you had a batch of real Amortentia sitting in front of you, what would you smell?
I love Harry Potter so much that I didn’t mind indulging myself a bit. I closed my eyes and tried to think of the smells that take me to my happiest places with my husband. I think I would smell coffee beans, sunscreen and the toasty-ness of your skin after you’ve been outside. Weird, I know. But that’s the point — the potion smells like something that will attract the person.
I attribute this to the fact that my husband almost always smells like coffee beans. He probably drinks so much coffee that it oozes out of his pours, but I swear, the man always smells toasty. Also, when we first started dating, it was summertime, and the first time he told me he loved me, we were at the beach. Plus, we honeymooned in Jamaica — hence, the sunscreen and sunshine-on-the-skin smells.
So what would he smell?
“Honeysuckle, Lord of Misrule, and a campfire.”
– Kyle, the Mountain Gypsy’s husband
His association with the summer we started dating is that fresh honeysuckle scent, and of course, bonfires are one of my favorite things on earth, so the campfire smell makes sense. Lord of Misrule is a scent from Lush that I absolutely love, and wear a lot of perfumes and things that have those same ingredients – citrus, patchouli, black pepper. He described it as “sweet, but a little hippie.”
This potion is one that always intrigued me while reading and watching Harry Potter, because it is mysterious until you actually smell it for yourself. It shows such vast, interesting parts of a person once they do smell it, and it reveals so much about the characters. In honor of such a potion (and Valentine’s Day), I have concocted two drinks based on the scents that lure both me and my husband. My brother had a lot of great ideas for this, so he came over to help with the potions experiment for the entire afternoon. Kyle came downstairs from work for periodic taste-testing.
For me, I’ve come up with a simple coconut espresso martini. This is definitely more on the decadent side, which could be perfect for a Valentine’s Day dessert.
Kayla’s Coconut Espresso Martini
3 oz. Malibu rum with coconut liqueur
3 oz. Califia Farms Double Espresso Cold Brew with Almond Milk
Melted chocolate (I used semi-sweet chocolate chips)
Melt a bit of semi-sweet chocolate chips (you just need enough to rim the glass) in a heat-safe bowl in the microwave. Use a bowl that will fit the rim of a martini glass! Stir every 15-20 seconds until it’s nice and melted. Dip the rim of a martini glass into the bowl.
Spread some coconut flakes onto a little plate, and dip the chocolatey martini glass into the coconut flakes!
For the drink, add the rum and cold brew to a cocktail shaker with a little ice. Shake 3 times and then strain into the glass. Voila!
I just happened to find that cold brew already bottled, but you could use any form of cold brew or cooled down espresso. Just make sure it’s strong coffee! Also, you could add any sort of cream to it, but I like almond milk because it’s creamy but still light.
Kyle’s drink was a little more complicated to get just right. We ended up going with a play on a Hot Toddy, with a little more spice to it.
Kyle’s Sweet & Spicy Hot Toddy
2 oz. cayenne+lemon water
1 oz. spicy simple syrup
3 oz. whiskey
1/2 tsp. honey
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
Cayenne+Lemon water – No, this is not the Master Cleanse, so don’t worry. For a traditional Hot Toddy, you add hot water to a lemon to make the base. For this one, simply add 1 big slice of lemon and 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper to the glass, and pour over 8 ounces of hot water. Let that steep for about 10 minutes, then strain.
Spicy Simple Syrup – Add 1 cup water, 1 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon whole black pepper, 1 tablespoon whole all spice, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1 teaspoon whole cloves to a sauce pan. Bring to a boil and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Strain all of the big pieces of spices out and save the simple syrup in an airtight jar.
For the drink, add the whiskey, simple syrup, honey and vanilla to a glass or mug. Stir to mix in the honey, and then pour the hot cayenne+lemon water on top. Float a lemon slice and cinnamon stick on top.
I love how these turned out to be sort of one summer and one winter drink. If you know either of us, I think these are very telling of the both of us. My husband usually just drinks beer, so when he does order a cocktail, he tends to go for sweeter drinks than I do…it’s almost like dessert for him. He drank about 17 Pina Coladas on his birthday when we were in Jamaica, if that tells you anything. For me, you all know I love whiskey, so I find it so interesting that the smokey scent he associated with me can only be matched up in drink form by whiskey. I think these recipes are very telling of our personalities, too. Of the two of us, Kyle is oftentimes more easy-going than I am, rarely flustered, never fretting. Typically, I am the one who worries or makes things more complicated. Of course, our drinks would reflect that. The martini based off of Kyle is literally two ingredients. The drink based off of me includes several steps to prepare.
Have a happy Valentines’s Day, no matter who you’re with. And if you haven’t already, check out my #LoveYourGalentine challenge on Instagram!