It’s finally starting to cool down here in Southern California, so it’s time to warm up with a good drink. Restaurants and bars around Los Angeles are putting up some impressive libations for the winter season, and we’ve compiled a list of some of the best to imbibe.
8279 Santa Monica Boulevard
West Hollywood, California 90046
If a Pisco Sour and Brandy Alexander had a boozy baby, it would be Norah’s “Spanish Alexander.” Though the citrus gives it a lighter flavor, the fuller body created by the heavy cream, nutty sweetness from the Amaretto, Jamaican rum, and clove make it a cozy winter drink.
300 S Santa Fe Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90013
Head bartender Dee Ann Quinones has unveiled a super festive tequila-based beverage dubbed “Santa’s Ponche.” The warm punch cocktail is made with Mexican dark sugar, persimmons, cranberries, apples, and spices. Enjoy the drink during Westbound’s Miracle on Santa Fe holiday pop-up series, which has turned the travel themed bar into a winter wonderland of tinsel, kitschy decor, and colorful lights. Expect special performances like sugarplum dancers, Dickens carolers, and liquor-stuffed stocking deliveries from Mr. Claus.
“Big Apple Sour”
Del Frisco’s Grille
1551 Ocean Ave.
Santa Monica, CA 90401
For a fun wintry cocktail with an ocean view, Del Frisco’s Grille in Santa Monica is a sure bet. Their “Big Apple Sour” brings in seasonal apple flavor with Crown Royal Apple, and makes it mouthwatering by adding fresh lemon sour. A Renacer Malbec float and lemon wedge finish off the shaken drink on ice.
Eggnog is a hallmark holiday drink, and all four Public School locations are serving up a good one. The “Winter Break” is their take on the traditional spiced rum drink, and includes heavy whipping cream, Licor 43, cinnamon maple syrup, and egg white. It’s served up in a martini glass delicately dusted with ground cinnamon. Don’t miss this drink on National Eggnog Day, December 24.
“How ‘Bout Them Apples”
3833 Main St.
Culver City, CA 90232
Stop by The Wallace in Downtown Culver City during their daily Classic Hour (5:30pm – 7:00pm) and try out the new “How ‘Bout Them Apples” at a steal. The drink includes Clyde May’s Alabama whiskey, ginger beer, lemon, and a dehydrated apple. Pair it, or one of their other new cocktails, with a Double Burger, also on the Classic Hour menu.
“Spark of Madness”
Faith & Flower
705 W. 9th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90015
Located in the WaterMarke Tower in Downtown L.A.’s South Park district, Faith & Flower has an array of cocktails that range from crisp and light to rich and decadent. The contemporary restaurant is serving up a refreshing drink this season called the “Spark of Madness.” It’s a Mezcal drink with Pisco, caramelized pineapple Gomme, L’Orgeat Almond Liqueur, and lime, guaranteed to chase away any winter blues.
1331 E 6th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90021
A cocktail featuring bone marrow may not seem like the most festive holiday drink, but it is not to be missed. The Italian Trattoria infuses bourbon with roasted bone marrow in a process that takes several days. Once ready, the infused bourbon is strained and chilled, mixed with Amaro Averna, walnut, and Angostura bitters to create a distinctly rich, savory cocktail you can’t get anywhere else.
“Barrel-Aged Maple Boulevardie”
The Walt Disney Concert Hall
141 South Grand Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90012
The Walt Disney Concert Hall is holding several amazing performances this season, so before or after you enjoy a show, head to Patina for a sweet seasonal cocktail. The “Barrel-Aged Maple Boulevardie” is composed of maple syrup infused rye, Campari, Carpano Antica, and lemon peel topper. The drink is also being served at sister Patina restaurants Nick + Stef’s Steakhouse, Café Pinot, Kendall’s Brasserie, and Ray’s & Stark Bar.
“Apple Gingersnap,” “Apple Cobbler,” and “Eggnog Martini”
Sushi Roku Santa Monica
1401 Ocean Ave.
Santa Monica, CA 90401
One of L.A.’s favorite sushi joints just launched a few new winter cocktails that should definitely be on your radar. Vodka drinkers will want to try the “Apple Gingersnap,” mixed with green apple puree, lemon, simple syrup, and served up in a cinnamon sugar and candied ginger-rimmed glass. If bourbon’s your jam, the “Apple Cobbler” uses the same green apple puree, but mixes it with cinnamon syrup, lemon, and bitters. For a classic, try the “Eggnog Martini,” which combines eggnog with Dekuyper Amaretto, Hennessy VS, nutmeg, and cinnamon.
“Spa Day,” “Weston,” and “Beachfront Property”
Here’s Looking At You
3901 W 6th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90020
The cocktail menu at one of Korea Town’s hottest new restaurants, Here’s Looking At You, oozes with Los Angeles inspiration. It boasts an array of cutely named concoctions, like the “Spa Day,” a relaxing drink with Absolut Elyx, lime, pink peppercorn syrup, Chinese celery, and Winship Cucumber Bitters. As the menu informs, the Troubadour-inspired “Weston” martini is a great opener to whatever headlines your evening, with Dolin Blanc, Dolin Dry, L.A.’s own Astral Clementine Gin, Bitter Truth Violet, and orange bitters. You can’t have a list of L.A. drinks without paying homage to the Pacific, which the orange “Beachfront Property” does, with Joven Mezcal, Cappelletti, Carpano Bianco, lime, and guava-clove syrup.
Jalapeno, Scotch, and Gin Cocktails
3705 Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90026
Kettle Black has a simple yet delicious cocktail for every liquor, and winter is the perfect time to warm up with their Jalapeno Cocktail, made from jalapeno infused tequila, pineapple cordial, cherry heering, and lime. The rustic Italian restaurant also serves up a scotch cocktail that features peach pluot cordial, averna, St. Germain, and lemon, as well as a wintry gin cocktail that includes peppercorn cordial, thai basil, cucumber, lime, and tonic.
“Bellini In A Pear Tree”
WP24 by Wolfgang Puck
The Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles
900 W Olympic Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90015
The holiday season is the perfect time to get fancy and add a little bubbly into your adult drink rotation. Wolfgang Puck’s WP24 is the perfect place to enjoy a refreshing holiday-inspired Bellini with an amazing view. The adorably named “Bellini In A Pear Tree” features prosecco, pear puree, and fresh cranberry garnish, and will make you want to clink “salud!” over and over again.
“Belafonte,” “Pesos,” and “Herman Blume”
3709 Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90026
Sawyer’s drink menu is extensive, including both before and after dinner drinks. But for these colder winter months, nothing beats the Silverlake restaurant’s three featured rum, tequila, and scotch drinks. The “Belafonte” combines rum with seasonally appropriate apricot cordial, fernett, lemon, and bitters. For tequila drinkers, the “Pesos” pairs tequila with heirloom ice cider, pressed apple juice, and lime for an apply good drink. Last but not least, the “Herman Blume” is a cozy scotch drink with spiced tea, pomegranate cordial, lemon, and bitters.
“Peaching For The Stars,” “The Pink Slip,” and “Is That A Cucumber Gin Your Pocket”
8933 Santa Monica Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90069
The cocktails at West Hollywood’s Bar10 are as punny as they are tasty. The cleverly named “Peaching For The Stars” features, unsurprisingly, Peach Ciroc and peach puree, with Triple sec, lemon, simple syrup, and strawberry. The new cocktail menu also includes “The Pink Slip,” with Russian Standard Vodka, agave, lime, strawberry, cucumber, and a kick of jalapeno. In addition to the obvious cucumber and gin found in the “Is That A Cucumber Gin Your Pocket,” you’ll also taste lemon, simple syrup, and mint.
6333 W 3rd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Take a break from your holiday shopping at The Grove and stop by Mixology 101 at the Farmer’s Market for a festive champagne drink. The “Hollywood Bubbles” will make all your stress float away, with champagne, bénédictine, fresh raspberry puree, and pomegranate juice. As an added bonus, you can get your parking validated for the Farmer’s Market and may even catch a celebrity sighting – both equally exciting when you’re at The Grove.