We don’t prescribe to love spells and potions, but there’s another, all natural way to fan the flames of passion this Valentine’s Day. And that’s with edible aphrodisiacs; foods that have long been believed to enhance the libido and stimulate the senses due to their concentrated levels of certain chemical compounds. And we’re not just talking oysters and chocolate by the way. We’re talking unexpected ingredients, like almonds, avocados, salmon and chilies, which can also get your juices flowing.
That’s why we’ve rounded up some of our favorite aphrodisiac-focused dishes in New York, from the Romesco-Topped Black Bass at John Fraser’s new and super romantic Narcissa in the East Village and the creamy Guacamole at Mission Cantina on the Lower East Side to the Chong Qing Spicy Chicken at Grand Sichuan House in Brooklyn. Whew, we’re getting all hot and bothered just thinking about them!
Regarded as an ancient fertility symbol, almonds provide high doses of vitamin E, magnesium and fiber, which improve endurance and overall well being (the aroma also supposedly arouses passion in females). So start your night off right with a seductive meal of Steamed Black Bass at John Fraser’s Narcissa, plated with Spanish Romesco (a nut and red pepper-based paste), perfumed with French Curry Broth, and strewn with even more Toasted Almonds for good measure.Read More
Equaled only by oysters, this ultra-aphrodisiac contains a host of feel-good compounds. There’s tryptophan, known to promote relaxation (it’s why you get drowsy after Thanksgiving turkey), as well as phenylethylamine, the “love chemical,” which releases dopamine in the pleasure centers of the brain. So just imagine how euphoric you’ll feel after digging into the Hot Fudge Sundae at Brooklyn’s quirky ice cream shop, OddFellows, which includes three scoops of Chocolate Chunk ice cream, Chocolate Soil, Chocolate Cake, Chocolate Whipped Cream, Crispy Chocolate Beads and gooey Hot Fudge, all made with products from Brooklyn’s own Mast Brothers, the renowned small-batch chocolatier. Really, nothing says V-Day, like gobs of crazy creamy, chilled chocolate.Read More
Oysters are undoubtedly one of the world’s most overtly sultry foods; just consider the very act of eating one! But outward appearances aside, they’re also rich in rare amino acids, which trigger increased levels of sex hormones. So make like Casanova (who famously feasted on 50 bivalves a day) at shellfish meccas, especially Aquagrill, which boasts one of the most extensive oyster selections in the city. Try fleshy Moonstones from Rhode Island, sweet Sisters Points from Washington, assertively briny, wild Plymouth Rock oysters from Massachussetts, and delicate, purple-fringed Royal Miyagis from British Columbia, accented by a simple squirt of lemon or dollop of piquant mignonette.Read More
The Slow-Poached Salmon in musky Bordelaise sauce at Lafayette, Andrew Carmellini’s romantic French bistro, will undoubtedly double your pleasure and fun. That’s because the velvety pink fish is packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which helps keep sex-hormone production at its peak, and the red wine in the rich sauce contains resveratrol, an antioxidant that boosts blood flow and improves circulation before and during intercourse.Read More
The vitamin E in avocados helps your body churn out hormones, like testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone, which circulate in your bloodstream and can stimulate sexual responses. So you’ll definitely want to double-dip your Shrimp Chips and Chicharonnes in the silky Guacamole at Mission Cantina, or dollop it on top of a selection of tasty Tacos, like Braised Octopus, Cumin-spiced Lamb, Skate Tempura or Pumpkin Mole. (Oh and pumpkin’s another aphrodisiac, so the Pumpkin Mole & Guac combo is a one-two punch.Read More
Yes, they look like (well, you know), but bananas also deliver potassium, a nutrient key to muscle strength. And you’ll be ready to rope a steer after indulging in the sinful Banana Pudding at the delightfully rowdy Hill Country, which serves mason jars piled high with Banana Liquor-infused Custard, sliced fresh Bananas, Nilla Wafers, and feathery clouds of Whipped Cream.Read More
Crimson pomegranates are considered a “super food” because they’re chock full of antioxidants, and that’s precisely what makes them so superbly sexy as well. Since the flavorful juice and jewel-like seeds can improve blood circulation and increase testosterone, your man or woman should ask for an extra scoop of Pomegranate Sherbert at the new Brooklyn Museum location of Saul. Just as alluring is the quivering, honeyed Panna Cotta served alongside, made with dreamy, fresh-from-the-farm Battenkill Cream.Read More
Capsaicin, a chemical found in hot peppers, also helps to get the blood pumping, and stimulates nerve endings so you’ll feel more turned on. You’ll probably want to flag down the check shortly after eating the authentically fiery Chong Qing Spicy Chicken at this Brooklyn favorite; the tender nubs of Chicken are dusted with lip-tingling Sichuan Peppercorns, and fairly obscured under a incendiary blanket of Whole Dried Red Chilies.Read More