Features Hangover Remedies 2009
Hangover Remedies 2009
December 2008

sugary beverage + hair of the dog + fatty, bready food = hangover relief

There are some conflicting gastronomic equations regarding hangovers. Chefs, sommeliers and mixologists all calculate a cure differently, but one thing that everyone can agree on is that a throbbing head begs for warm, comforting fare.

Enter the breakfast sandwich. It can be the ideal hangover cure if it fills and coats an agitated stomach while soaking up the liquid poison still lingering in your system. On our recent tasting trip to Seattle, we discovered some scrumptious paninis by Chef Ericka Burke at The Volunteer Park Café and Marketplace that are indulgent and sophisticated without being ostentatious and fit the hangover criteria.

Chef Burke, who prides herself on offering homey goodness, has reinvented the boring breakfast sandwich. Her Prosciutto and Egg Panini combines salty prosciutto with gooey melted Gruyère and soft-poached eggs. As Burke explains, “The beauty of this sandwich is the runny yolk; it should drip down your chin when you eat it!” She’s also created a Brie and Apple Panini that is a melty, sweet, grilled concoction—ideal for a vegetarian. Essential to this panini’s charm is the thick-cut baguette, sourced from Seattle’s Columbia City Bakery. Both paninis are convenient enough to be devoured on your commute to New Year’s Day brunch service and can serve as inspiration for a “hangover panini” to put on your own menu.

Here are various food-and-drink equations for fast alcohol-ingestion relief from some industry authorities. Sommelier Adam Chumas of Tilth applies a combination of things to cure “the worst train-wreck hangover”; Mixologist Jim Romdall of Vessel divides his remedies into “degrees of hangovers”; Chef Gavin Kaysen shares an unparalleled Café Boulud soup recipe; and if you follow Sommelier Belinda Chang’s preventative #1 and #2 tips, you may not even need her #3 remedy.

Sommelier Adam Chumas of Tilth – Seattle, WA on StarChefs.comSommelier Adam Chumas of Tilth – Seattle, WA
My favorite hangover cures:

  • Extra Cold Lemon-Lime Gatorade
  • Tilth’s thyme cheddar biscuits with smoked chicken gravy and eggs over easy
  • A rich, thick, SPICY Tilth Bloody Mary made only with Budweiser

This combo along with a nap will cure even the worst train-wreck hangover.

Mixologist Jim Romdall of Vessel – Seattle, WA on StarChefs.comMixologist Jim Romdall of Vessel – Seattle, WA
I have a couple degrees of hangovers:
If I'm really destroyed, I toast a couple slices of bread and top them with European-style butter and a sprinkling of sugar. I accompany the toast with any sort of drink with sugar and a vitamin B complex pill—thiamin is your friend. Then I go back to sleep.

For the less plastered version, carbs and protein are key. Here is my favorite meal to prepare. There are no real measured amounts . . . numbers and thinking tend to hurt when I’m hungover.

  • Heat a skillet with olive oil, cracked red pepper, and finely sliced green onion.
  • Add some sliced chicken and season with Johnny's Seasoning Salt, black pepper, and Sriracha sauce.
  • After chicken is brown on all sides, add 2 eggs and mix.
  • Fold cooked ingredients into a large, flour tortilla. (I prefer the sun-dried tomato and habanero tortillas from Trader Joe’s.)

Chef Gavin Kaysen of Café Boulud – New York, NY on StarChefs.comChef Gavin Kaysen of Café Boulud – New York, NY
I would say the best solution for a hangover is three Advil, a mimosa, and a warm bowl of Wild Mushroom and Barley Soup. Of course, you need to make the soup before you go out as you may not have the energy to make it the next morning.

Sommelier Belinda Chang of The MODERN – New York, NY on StarChefs.comSommelier Belinda Chang of The MODERN – New York, NY
I have a few tried and true preventative measures:

  1. Always drink Champagne. The bubbles go straight to your head, it does the job quick, and burns clean.
  1. Always drink Badoit while you are drinking copious amount of Champagne. It’s the most delicious sparkling water and the best for the serious wine drinker. A one to one ratio should keep you out of trouble.
  1. If numbers 1 and 2 fail for some reason, go straight to Balthazar for a couple Oyster Mary drinks, several Diet Cokes and the Chicken Liver and Foie Gras Mousse.