Warm up with Brisbane’s best winter cocktails
As our weather keeps diving in and out of cold snaps, we figured it was the perfect time to take advantage of the winter chills with a seasonal tipple. Read on for some of the best cocktails being poured in Brisbane right now.
We can always rely on New Farm’s Bitter Suite for belly warming winter offerings and this year is no exception, with the venue dishing up warm apple pie cocktails of hot cider topped with whipped cream and caramel. Mulled wine and hot buttered rums are also being poured, while designated drivers can opt for the non-alcoholic peanut butter hot chocolate or warm banana chai smoothie. Cocktail cave Canvas has taken inspiration from Cherry Ripe chocolate bars to create Some Like It Hot, a blazing mix of Bacardi 8 rum with chocolate and sweet vermouth. Head to the secret lodge retreat of The Skukum Lounge inside Junk Bar to indulge in The Winterfell cocktail of steamed organic almond milk, organic chai, bourbon, vanilla Galliano and cinnamon sugar. Cosy haunt The End is keeping punters warm with mulled wine, Mexican spiced hot chocolate and hot toddy cocktails, as well as gingerbread hot buttered rums and the Howlin’ at Midnight whisky and rum blazer, served flaming. Dutch Courage Officers’ Mess is serving a delicious twist on the espresso martini, with housemade Nutella-infused rum and sherry, while UP on Constance is crafting an adult version of the classic hot chocolate, made from Cîroc coconut vodka, Nutella and cream. Grab a glass of mulled wine from The Twig & Berry, a hot pumpkin buttered rum from Cove Bar and Dining or a warm apple toddy from Habitat Restaurant & Bar.
Dandy’s Rooftop Bar at The Fox Hotel is dishing up the special Dandys Winter Warmer this season, which boasts popcorn-infused Bundaberg small batch rum, butter spiced with brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. The thoughtful folks at Public are pouring a designated-driver-friendly Winter Warmer at 0.9 alcohol units, featuring red wine, pickled pear, cinnamon, cranberry and coriander, served warm. Death Valley Bar has lovingly prepared a mulled version of Tasmania’s cherry and apple Pagan Cider, served warm with a cinnamon stick. On especially chilly nights, you’ll find it bubbling away with local orange slices and a few cloves, alongside a few shots of Melbourne’s Four Pillars Rare Dry Gin, which features native Tasmanian pepperberry, lemon myrtle, cinnamon, star anise and cardamom with a twist of lavender. Alternatively, head next door for a non-alcoholic Fancy Hot Chocolate from Southside Tea Room, which boasts dairy-free Kali dark drinking chocolate with your choice of housemade salted caramel, Nutella, Lebanese rose syrup, peanut butter or the daily treats on offer. Drop by new venue London Fields for the Mother’s Little Helper cocktail of Hennessy VS cognac, port, a whole egg, burnt butter, rosemary, nutmeg and a rosemary, cinnamon and nutmeg syrup, or cure the winter blues with the Penicillin cocktail from Libertine, featuring Chivas whisky, Laphroaig, lemon juice, honey and ginger syrup. Cobbler has also designed a cosy new catalogue of winter cocktails, including the bar’s famous flaming blazers, equal parts liquor and theatre, and the Colonel Reichstache concoction of Monkey Shoulder whisky, Pepperberry Manzanilla, fresh lemon juice, roasted pineapple honey and custard apple.
Head to Fortitude Valley’s Heya Bar for Fuji Fridays, which sees fresh-pressed Fuji apples or Batlow apple cider teamed with Fireball whisky. New CBD venue Mr Edward’s Alehouse & Kitchen is crafting a cracking Sour Pale Ale cocktail of bourbon whisky, orange marmalade, lemon, bitters and egg white, topped with pale ale beer, as well as its signature espresso martini featuring Ketel One vodka, coffee and hazelnut liqueur and espresso. The Bowery can pour you the mighty fine Maixe-En-Plus, with Russell’s Reserve ten-year-old bourbon whisky, smoked paprika, lime, honey and egg white, while Can You Keep A Secret? is willing to add a dash of spiced rum to your espresso martini. Head to Cowch at South Bank for a full-on winter indulgence in the form of the recently launched share cocktail bowls, toasted marshmallows served with a Baileys-infused chocolate shot or a Choclatini cocktail of Ketel One vanilla-infused vodka, Mozart Gold liqueur and chocolate ganache. Hamilton’s NOLA Portside has taken inspiration from the cafe brulot diabolique (burnt devil’s coffee) served in the French-Creole dining halls of New Orleans, and is combining Don Julio Reposado tequila with triple sec, coffee liqueur, cinnamon and clove syrup, then setting the cocktail alight and pouring over fresh espresso. Coorparoo’s California Native can keep the belly warm with top-shelf Californian tequila and Mezcal, or sip on a Brandy Alexander espresso martini from Malt Pier in Newstead.
Byblos in Hamilton is pouring a number of winter cocktails, including the warm Carriage After Midnight featuring Byblos spiced rum, Pedro Ximénez, pumpkin puree with rosemary butter and grapefruit bitters, and the Memories of France concoction of Hennessy VSOP, mulled wine reduction, orange coffee and cacao tincture. In South Bank, Bourbon Street is serving the house favourite Special K Martini of vanilla-infused vodka stirred with muesli-infused milk, nut liqueur and chocolate bitters, while The Manhattan Line is pouring a darker version of the Long Island Iced Tea with rum, scotch, bourbon, Tennessee whisky, Disaronno, lemon and a splash of Dr Pepper. New laneway bar Maker is raising eyebrows and warming bellies with its superb cocktail of local beeswax-infused whisky run through filter coffee with pollen syrup, bitters and citrus, served with black fermented garlic bread, roast macadamia and peanut crumb. For a real winter warmer, order the roast banana-infused Mezcal cocktail, which is set alight and blazed with puffed wild rice, then served warm straight up with dehydrated banana rolled in puffed rice on the side.
Grab a cocktail of banana-infused rum with salted maple and chocolate bitters from Riverbar & Kitchen, or the Breakfast at Hibiki’s cocktail featuring Hibiki 12-year-old Japanese whisky with fig marmalade and citrus from Saké. Swing by Lock’n’Load on a Friday evening to sample the bar’s weekly cocktail creation, which in the past has involved delights like the Butter Berry Rumtini of butter vodka, spiced rum and strawberries. Those in the mood for a beer can indulge in decadent dessert flavours like apple pie and rocky road from Bacchus Brewing Co., while those after spirits can enjoy a warming scotch, bourbon or tequila from Bloodhound Corner Bar and Kitchen. City workers can warm up at The Gresham Bar with a splash of whisky or a Big Time cocktail featuring spiced rum, blackberry shrub, lime and vanilla. Woolloongabba favourite Pawpaw recently revealed its new Green Room Bar and is treating guests to a dash of summer dreaming with the Kookaburra cocktail packed with pineapple, orange, coconut liqueur, vodka and ice. If you’re keen for a night in, grab a pre-mixed bottle of Old Fashioned or Sazerac from Malt Traders or pick up some Warma Original Mulled Wine Syrup from New Farm Deli and Cafe to make your own winter warmer at home.
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