Happy New Hangover: How To Deal With A Deathly New Year's Day

It is believed that alcohol was invented sometime around 5,000 BC in Mesopotamia and that it was sometime during the following day when man searched for the first greasy spoon café. Next Tuesday, New Year's Day, more people will wake up with a hangover than on any other single day of the year. Have we celebrated making it through another year and embraced the time for new beginnings? Alas, we have not and nothing has changed.

Our "new beginnings" start with the need for junk food, aspirin and better yet, some hair of the dog. Before you begin think about those New Year's resolutions, I thought I would offer thoughts and tips on how to get through the traumas of a hangover. Please note that this is not some self-righteous article on preventing a hangover or even filled with healthy tips on curing one. Instead, it is filled with some of the ways that I have (painfully) learned over the years to get through one.

On the myths of preventing a hangover

It has been famously stated that there are only two ways to prevent a hangover: Never stop drinking or die. Some subscribe to "hair of the dog," which is the idea of continuing to drink the following day. Unfortunately, however, adherence to this principle only delays the inevitable hangover. Of course, nobody wants to follow the second part of the statement either, because death would negate one's ability to ever enjoy another good drink. I am afraid to say that there really is no way out and that we all will have to deal with the hangover sooner or later. Here are some tips on how to deal with your New Year's Day misery, based on personal experience.

How to deal with a hangover (like a professional)

  1. Stay in bed all day.
  2. Watch movies that do not require your brain: My personal favorites are Despicable Me and Zoolander.
  3. Head to the local juice bar: I go to Liquiteria in NYC's East Village and order a Royal Flush (golden pineapple, apple, pear, ginger, aloe vera & Liver Kidney Lymph Detox). If your local juice bar delivers, so much the better.
  4. Coconut water: If, as I do, you find drinking water boring and a slight chore, then coconut water is the answer to helping you rehydrate and replenish those electrolytes.
  5. Vitamins: Berocca has been part of the UK bartender diet for a long time and is now available in the U.S. The effervescent drink and vitamin tablets contain approximately 1,667% of your daily recommended intake of vitamin C. There are also plenty of B vitamins, which help settle the nervous system and stop the shakes.
  6. Nothing warms the soul like a bowl of spicy ramen noodles. I head to Momofuku when I am in New York and absolutely love Hakata Ramen Shin-Sen-Gumi in downtown Los Angeles.
  7. Eat bananas for energy and potassium.
  8. Coffee and a fried breakfast: Both are exactly the wrong types of items to consume during a hangover, but taste too damn good to ignore during your state of being.
  9. Take a sauna: If you understandably cannot exercise after a heavy night out, the sauna is the place to sweat it out.
  10. If you do have it in you and find yourself craving some hair of the dog, here are a few recipes:

The Bloody Mary is still the ultimate cocktail for the morning after. It is both a cocktail that will not make you feel bad for ordering early in the day and a meal for those who are not yet ready for solids.

The Bloody Mary

1 1/2 ounces Aylesbury Duck vodka

3 ounces tomato juice

3 dashes Worcestershire sauce

3 dashes Tabasco sauce

1/2 ounce fresh-squeezed lemon juice

pinch of salt

grind of black pepper

Roll between mixing glasses with ice, repeating 4 or 5 times. Pour unstrained into a Collins glass. Garnish with lemon and lime wedges, and a salad if you wish.

Two cocktails whose names give a clue to their purpose:

Corpse Reviver #2

3/4 ounce Fords Gin

3/4 ounce Fresh squeezed Lemon Juice

3/4 ounce Lillet Blanc

3/4 ounce Cointreau

Absinthe Rinse

Shake ingredients and strain into a cocktail coupe that has been washed with Absinthe.

The Pain Killer

2 ounces Pusser's navy rum

2 ounces fresh pineapple juice

1 ounce coconut cream

1 ounce fresh orange juice

Shake ingredients and strain over fresh ice into a Collins or highball glass. Garnish with fresh grated nutmeg.

I hope this all helps you get through your day. Happy hangover!

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