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8 recipes that will help you celebrate dad this Father's Day

Let's face it, every year Father's Day just doesn't get the same hype or attention as Mother's Day. For whatever reason, we're all usually willing to go all out on mom while barely sending a card to our own father—or father figure. Personally, this year I'm dedicated to making this the best Father's Day my dad has ever had. 

As I've gotten older, I've begun to realize that it really is the little things in life that make the ones you love feel special. For me, nothing says I love you like time spent preparing a meal. From finding just the right recipe to looking for ingredients to choosing just the right cocktail, all this hard work is, at it's heart, a labor of love.

My dad isn't really big on big on showy displays of affection or of spending a ton of money on gifts. So this holiday, I've decided to cook some of his favorite meals and to give him a heartfelt card. As the old saying goes, the way to a mans heart is through his stomach. It stands to reason that the way to dear old dad's heart is probably pretty similar.

We've rounded up some of our favorite recipes and cocktails that any guy would love to have this Sunday. From grilled burgers to a stiff Old Fashioned, Dad is definitely getting spoiled this year. 

Classic Grilled Cheeseburger

Who doesn't love a good cheeseburger? Grilling a thick, juicy patty and placing it between a nicely toasted bun is truly one of life’s simple pleasures. This burger recipe is a go-to if you're looking to give dad a no-fuss meal that he'll love. Consider making it extra special by purchasing high-quality meat that is 80/20 ratio of meat to fat, such as ground chuck, to help keep the burger juicy as it cooks. To maximize the sear of the grill, avoid moving the burgers around, except to flip them over once.
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Apple-Bourbon Brined and Smoked Pork Chops

Got a fancy dad? These apple-bourbon scented pork chops should be right up his alley. Whip these up by combining apple juice, water, bourbon and spices in a Ziploc bag and then brine thick pork chops in them. The result? Perfectly seasoned pork chops that will make a splash on the grill. 
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Anne Byrn's Grilled Chicken for Your Crowd

Serve this fool-proof, lemon- and herb-marinated grilled chicken with cole slaw, roasted sweet potatoes, fresh cranberry sauce and some braised kale or collards.
You can easily double this recipe and cook two chickens at once. Place each chicken in its own bag and divide the marinade evenly between the bags. This recipe first appeared in Anne Byrn's column Taste of a Place.
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Grilled New York Strip Steaks

Whether you prefer charcoal or gas, this is a basic technique for properly grilling a steak. Pulling the steak out of the refrigerator at least 1 hour before cooking helps to ensure a more even doneness throughout the steak. Equally important is letting the steak rest for 5 to 10 minutes before cutting. The resting period allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, making sure that they stay in the steak and not on the plate or cutting board.
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Grilled Oysters with Garlic Parmesan Butter

Popularized at the New Orleans seafood restaurant Drago’s, these grilled oysters take on an amazing smoky flavor from the grill while being gently poached in their own liquor and garlicky Parmesan butter. We'd serve these as part of a larger spread but Dad will enjoy gulping down at least a dozen. 
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Grilled Beer-Brined Pork Chops

Beer and pork? Is there a more dad combination? Using beer as the central ingredient of a brine imparts some of the natural bitterness and hops flavor into the pork. This is a great no-frills brine, as the soy and honey do not need to be heated to dissolve the salt; just add everything directly into a plastic bag.
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Classic Manhattan Cocktail

Treat dad to craft cocktails at home by shaking up a Manhattan. This classic cocktail is traditionally made with rye whiskey, but you can certainly make it with bourbon if you prefer. Add as many cherry garnishes as you'd like.
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Classic Old Fashioned Cocktail

A classic Old Fashioned is sure to prove to your dad that you really should be his favorite child. It's very similar to a Manhattan except for the omission of vermouth and ice. Be careful not to make him too many, you do want him to remember you and your siblings names by the end of the night. 
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Ryan Shepard is the editor-in-chief at Southern Kitchen. Though originally from Los Angeles, she has lived in Atlanta since early 2017 and cannot imagine calling any other city home (except maybe New Orleans). Before joining Southern Kitchen's staff, Ryan worked on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. on public policy issues. When she's not at work, she enjoys hunting down the best Mexican food in the city and drinking whiskey, obviously.