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Curated Cocktails: Winter 2020

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By Sophie Brochu

Classics with a twist, surprising ingredients, and beautiful presentations. Explore a collection of unique cocktails from bars and restaurants across the country.

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Adrift Tiki Bar

Pear-ilous Punch


Splurge on the Pear-ilous Punch at Denver’s Adrift Tiki. This eye-catching shareable cocktail is made with Jamaican rum, Cachaça (Brazilian liqueur), and pear brandy. The rooibos tea syrup gives it a hint of earthy sweetness while Falernum (Caribbean cordial) gives it a touch of spice. Then there’s fresh lime and pineapple for a fruity punch. As the Adrift team says, “unite and conquer.”

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Lazy Bear


San Francisco

Bar director Otello Tiano riffs on a sour cocktail with wild fennel liquor, Fuji apple, St. George Botanivore Gin, Pommeau (apple brandy), and citrus⁠. The drink is a nod to the team’s commitment to foraging in the Bay Area and beyond. Tiano uses wild-foraged fennel to make a liquor reminiscent of an unsweetened Chartreuse. The Fuji adds a warming spice note that’s perfect for this time of year.

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The Violet Hour

Arbitrary Conditions


Find the Arbitrary Conditions under the “Stirred” category of The Violet Hour’s Winter 2020 menu. This drink is made with pisco, quince brandy, vermouth, and Licor 43, which is a golden-hued Spanish liqueur made only in Cartagena. It calls for a dash of Creme de Menthe and is finished with two sprays of Amaro Sibilla. This unique cocktail is clean and aromatic with notes of mint, citrus, vanilla, and spice.

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Belle Époque Absinthe Lounge

Bulles Belle Époque

New Orleans

At this swanky lounge in the heart of the French Quarter, you can choose your own adventure when it comes to the Bulles Belle Époque. This cocktail, served in a traditional slipstream glass, has La Clandestine Absinthe and a Peychaud’s-soaked sugar cube as its base. Choose from coconut, aloe, earl grey, hibiscus tea, or water to dilute the absinthe for a traditional louching (clouding) experience.

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Birds and Bees

John Wayne

Los Angeles

They call this one a “trustworthy companion in the form of a tequila sipper.” Named after the great singing cowboy of film, the John Wayne is made with Añejo tequila, 10 Year Tawny Port, Cocchi Barolo (fortified wine), Carpano Antica (vermouth), Angostura, and Umeboshi, or Japanese plum bitters. It’s slightly smokey, boozy, and a touch bitter. In the words of the late actor, “Talk low, talk slow, and don’t talk too much.”

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Hibiscus Soda

Those looking for a creative and delicious spirit-free drink should look no further than this hibiscus soda. This delightful non-alcoholic drink is comprised of hibiscus flower, simple syrup, sorrel, soda, and lots of crushed ice. “We use the sorrel as the lemony flavor inside the drink with simple syrup and hibiscus,” says the team. They also use fresh sorrel as a garnish. Pair this fresh and tangy drink with any seafood dish on HŪSO’s menu.

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