Big Bar’s Holiday Cocktails: Staying Cozy in LA Winter

Big Bar's Nog {Not Really}

I refuse to put up Christmas decorations when Thanksgiving hasn’t even come and gone yet. But one thing I will allow in anticipation of the holidays are the cocktails. Beautiful, rich, cozy, festive-inspired holiday cocktails. And Big Bar in Los Feliz just kicked off their new holiday menu, which includes three hot cocktails and a quaffable egg nog.

I had the chance to run through the menu that one day when it rained, which was perfect considering there are three hot cocktails to try. Now, why would bar manager and drink creator Cari Hah dare to serve hot cocktails when L.A. isn’t exactly a snowy-weather kinda town?

“Not many bars in L.A. do hot cocktails, other than the hot toddy and Irish coffee, so we wanted to offer a variety,” she said. And her hot drinks are enjoyable beyond their coziness factor. They’re layered and flavorful, leaving you to ruminate over and enjoy each careful sip. That Skiing in Shorts features the subtle heat from the spicy ginger liqueur. And the Up All Night coffee cocktail has some added depth Jager-infused whipped cream.

Bonus is that they make a crisp winter night even better when enjoyed on the Alcove’s extensive patio.

Here’s a look at Big Bar’s new holiday cocktails.

Hot cocktails

Up All Night holiday cocktails by Caroline on Crack
Up All Night: Cari described this as a hot White Russian and I was immediately sold on it. That whipped cream! Jameson Caskmates Stout, fresh brewed coffee, turbinado, Jägermeister infused whipped cream.  
Lodi Todi by Caroline on Crack
Lodi Todi: If you’re unfortunate to catch a cold this season, this is the drink that’ll make you feel better. Glenlivet 14, Dictador 12yr rum, Becherovka, lemon, honey, tiki bitters.
Skiing in Shorts holiday cocktails by Caroline on Crack
Skiing in Shorts: Yes, these ski goggles accompany this mulled cider variation, which is damn good. The heat from the spicy Jager comes on so subtly like someone gradually turning up a heater to a comfortable level. Ginger, pineapple, Jack Daniels rye, Jagermeister Scharf, honey, lemon, Miracle Mile Forbidden Bitters.

Nog, Gnome, Martini

Nog (Not Really) holiday cocktails by Caroline on Crack
Nog (Not Really): Thanks to its lower amounts of sugar and cream, this is one nog that won’t leave you feeling bloated and icky. I could actually drink more than one of these. Hennessy Black, Dictador 12 year rum, Miracle Mile Redeye bitters, cream, egg, Grahams 10 years tawny port, nutmeg, truffle salt, salted shortbread cookie.
Rolling With the Gnomies holiday cocktails by Caroline on Crack
Rolling With the Gnomies: A wintry patio pounder, this cute vodka drink is uber light, refreshing and bright. The downside is that it’s so easy to drink you won’t get to spend much time with the adorable vessel it comes in. (BTW order this and they’ll need to take your driver’s license so you don’t accidentally go walking off with the copper gnome.) Absolut Elyx, St-Germain, pomegranate, lime, Q grapefruit.
Exquisite AF Martini by Caroline on Crack
Exquisite AF Martini: Amazingly Martini Queen Cari Hah hasn’t had a martini on her menu in a couple of seasons. But she brings back the classic in this beauty of a drink. I actually finished this one, which says a lot considering I usually only sip the cocktails during a tasting. So clean and dangerously smooth. Hendricks Orbium, Martini Rossi Ambrato vermouth, lemon peel + cocktail onion.

Big Bar Los Feliz at Alcove Cafe
1929 Hillhurst Avenue
Los Angeles, California 90027 (map)
(323) 644-0100

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