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Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone Talk Whiskey, Date Nights and Melissa's 'Ridiculous' Hosting Tip (Exclusive)

The married couple are partners in Big Nose Kate, a whiskey brand now available at all 32 locations of Black Angus Steakhouse

<p>Shutterstock/Paul Smith/Featureflash Photo Agency</p> Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone in 2019.

Shutterstock/Paul Smith/Featureflash Photo Agency

Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone in 2019.

Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone love to entertain, and when they do, they tend to get creative.

I get so excited when you're going to get to see all the people you're kind of crazy about and love in one place,” McCarthy tells PEOPLE in this week's issue, on newsstands Friday. “I plan weeks and weeks and weeks out.”

“There's oftentimes a theme that Melissa will very lovingly and forcefully suggest,” adds Falcone. “So there could be a costume element.”

McCarthy prefers the costume theme to be “random,” which serves as the ultimate icebreaker.

“I think that if everybody doesn't know each other, but everybody kind of looks equal parts ridiculous, you can talk to anybody,” she says. “If it's Western wear and you turn around and someone is in a full length duster and cowboy boots and a giant hat, you don't have to know them to be like, ‘Well, you look insane.’ And then you're off to the races with a new friend.”

The married couple are co-founders in Big Nose Kate whiskey — which is now available at all 32 Black Angus Steakhouse locations — so you can count on a good drink being a part of the plan, too.

<p>Courtesy of Big Nose Kate</p> Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone (in New Mexico) invested in Big Nose Kate whiskey in 2022. "This whiskey is so smoky, we're going to smoke your mind," says Falcone.

Courtesy of Big Nose Kate

Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone (in New Mexico) invested in Big Nose Kate whiskey in 2022. "This whiskey is so smoky, we're going to smoke your mind," says Falcone.

Of the many characters McCarthy has played, the couple agrees the brash title character of 2014’s Tammy, which they co-wrote and Falcone directed, would be the most fun to drink whiskey with.

“She would have way too many,” McCarthy says. “We'd either end up fighting or kissing.”

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Big Nose Kate was named after Maria Izabella Magdolna Horony, a "fiercely independent self-made woman," who was “feared and revered throughout the rough and tumble Old West.” McCarthy says she was already familiar with the heroine when the couple became partners in the brand, co-founded by Melissa Heim, in 2022.

Related: Melissa McCarthy Marks Husband Ben Falcone's 50th Birthday: 'I'd Marry This Guy All Over Again'

“My dad is an obsessive Western movie fan,” McCarthy says. “So I actually knew Big Nose Kate.”

“Not personally,” Falcone clarifies. “I'm not that old,” McCarthy adds.

McCarthy and Falcone say date nights these days usually involve going out to eat. “We cook a lot in general, but I think we cooked so much during the pandemic,” McCarthy says. “And then Ben just one day was like, ‘We're going to go out to dinner more.' And I was like, 'Okay, that sounds wonderful.'”

The couple’s two daughters, Vivian, 16, and Georgette, 13, are now old enough that they sometimes have their own plans for the evening.

“A lot of times they'll go to a different restaurant with their friends and we'll go somewhere,” Ben says.

“They want to go out with their friends now,” McCarthy adds. “They've started thinking going out to dinner is fun, just not with us."

Asked about their upcoming Valentine’s Day plans, Falcone jokes that the festivities will involve “a couple jets” and a hot-air balloon. “We jump from a jet into the hot-air balloon,” he explains. “Sure. Oh, wow. You're going to kill me,” McCarthy replies.

The couple prefers to stay in on the holiday, so Falcone can whip up a special dinner, such as steak or smash burgers. One of their most memorable Valentine’s Days was about 23 years ago.

We went to a restaurant and it was devastatingly nerve-racking,” Falcone recalls. “Not for us, but you saw so many people on their first date. Remember how nervous everyone was around us?”

“It was like it all had to be the most perfect night,” McCarthy says. “So they couldn't just relax and have dinner. And everybody just seemed like they were about to slightly pass out.”

Related: Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone's Relationship Timeline

“Everyone seemed really short of breath, so it started to catch on to us too,” Falcones remembers. “We're like, we got to get out of here and go relax somewhere.”

And what was the couple’s best Valentine’s Day gift to each other? "Well, Georgie was born close to Valentine's Day, so I would say that's a pretty big gift,” Falcone says.

“That's a pretty big gift,” McCarthy agrees. “Ben gave me a pendant many, many years ago. It's a little heart that says ‘truly, madly, deeply’ that I wear every day. So I love that.”

Falcone adds: “And our daughter is second.”

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