With the deluge of ice in the city we’re finding it difficult to stay optimistic that Spring will once again rear its flowery head. Naturally, this has caused us to start drinking… heavily. And nothing gets us through those frigid winter nights like an expertly crafted cocktail that wreaks of the winter season. Here are some of our fave winter cocktails in Toronto…
LUMA – Grandpa’s Apple Cider
We wish our grandfather took to mixing cocktails instead of simply mixing up racial stereotypes, and if he did we’re pretty sure it’d be something like Grandpa’s Apple Cider over at LUMA. Sailor Jerry’s Spiced Rum, Cinnamon Schnapps, Steamed Apple Juice and a Cinnamon Stick fuse together for the perfect winter warmer.
Cocktail Parlor – Penicillin
A shot of liquid medicine… unfortunately unavailable as an IV. Johnnie Walker Red, Laphroaig Scotch, Lemon Juice, Honey Ginger Syrup, Domain de Canton Ginger Liquor and Candied Ginger mix and mingle for a holistically satiating sipper.
Drake One Fifty – Brown Butter Maple Old Fashioned
We’ll take brown butter on anything. Add it to a drink, and we’ll take 15. Drake One Fifty uses Brown Butter Infused Bourbon, Maple Syrup, Cigar Tincture and Mole Bitters to craft this bad boy. We use extreme caution to not over-imbibe.
The County General – Doc’s Holiday
We’re all (sort of) on holiday, so we’re thinking joining Doc wouldn’t be such a bad thing. This viscous vacay sees Buffalo Trace Bourbon, Mulled Port Wine, and Cherry Vanilla and Orange Bitters intertwining to create a relaxing respite from the wretched weather.
Naturally, if you’re in too dire a spot to head out (read: suffer from pyjama inseparability) then you’ll have to man up and get your tipples on at home. Here are a couple of our fave winter warmers to prep in the fiery bowels of our own homes…
If only mom would have fed us this classic cocktail instead of Neo Citran, there’s a good chance we would have missed less school as teens. (Please note: View the Vibe does not condone underage drinking… we just wish had done more of it ourselves!) We like to liven up the classic recipe a bit using some modern day delights: Tealish Lemon Meringue Dessert Tea + Captain Morgan’s Private Stock Rum + Dash of Lemon Bitters + Cinnamon Stick. It’s Tealish-icious!
Hendrick’s Holiday Helpers
Hendrick’s Gin is always on-hand at home, so obviously we asked the good folks over there to give us a couple delightful recipes we can use with our favourite gin. (PS 2014 is totally the year of gin!) We tried the Tippling Tea and fell in love with its slight peppery perfection, and the Hot Gin Punch wowed at our little holiday get-together. Here’s how to make them for your own drinking delight…
2oz Hendrick’s Gin + 1.5oz Bergamot and Chamomile Cordial (see below) + .25oz Lemongrass Syrup + .25oz Lemon Juice + .5oz Cucumber Juice + 1 bar spoon Fresh Ginger Juice + Cucumber Wheel + Fresh Sage Leaf
In a mixing glass, add all of the ingredients and gently shake. Strain into a champagne coupe and float a cucumber wheel onto the drink. Rub the rim with fresh sage and place the leaf onto the cucumber slice, then top the cocktail with a touch of cracked pepper.
*Note: Bergamot and Chamomile Cordial = 1 part Bergamot Syrup + 1 part Chamomile Syrup + 1 part Strongly Brewed Chamomile Tea
Hot Gin Punch
3 teacups Hendrick’s Gin + 3 teacups Madeira Wine + 3 Cloves + a pinch of Grated Nutmeg + 1 large teaspoon Cinnamon Powder + 1 teaspoon Brown Sugar + 6 large Lemon Twists + 1 small slice Orange + 3 big chunks Fresh Pineapple + 4 large spoons Honey + Lemon Juice + a dash of Water
Combine all ingredients in a small pot and simmer gently for 30 minutes. Pour into a teapot and serve hot in teacups.
*Optional: Add a half shot of Hendrick’s Gin into each service vessel to make up for some of the booze that would have cooked off. Just saying…