Kick Off The Festivities With San Diego’s Best Holiday Cocktails And Brews

While the pandemic and subsequent stay at home orders have halted many holiday activities and events this year, that doesn’t mean the party has to stop! Several San Diego bars, breweries, and eateries are still serving up their signature holiday cocktails and drinks, albeit it to-go versions.

Enjoy these festive cocktails and brews from several of San Diego’s favorite locales, along with a holiday cocktail recipe.

Madison on Park

Perfect for cozying up at home, neighborhood lounge and eatery Madison on Park is currently offering several festive holiday drinks for takeout Tuesday through Sunday from 5pm-9:30pm. The menu includes staples like the Madison Old Fashioned with 1776 Rye Bourbon, Pecan Wood Smoked Maple Syrup, and Cherry Bark Vanilla Bitters and their take on a Carajillo, made with Licor 43, Espresso, and Orange Peel.

In addition to the holiday cocktails, Madison is offering wine and additional cocktails to-go, including all the garnishes. You can complement the drinks with the restaurant’s approachable Mediterranean and Southern California fare all while supporting your favorite neighborhood gem. Orders can be picked up from the restaurant or placed via Postmates and DoorDash for delivery.


Puesto Cervecería

To celebrate their first holiday season, Puesto Cervecería, the newest project from San Diego-based Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar, has debuted their Navidad Cerveza and accompanying holiday growler. A strong, full bodied, malty dark Mexican style bock beer, the Navidad Cerveza combines spice from German Sterling hops with a rich dark roasted malt character, to achieve the perfect brew for the holiday season.

Available throughout the holiday season, along with the limited edition growler, the beer is the perfect brew for hankering down at home during the holidays. Priced at $30 for the glass growler and beer fill-up, the growler can also be filled with any of Puesto’s core beers. Puesto patrons can also bring in their existing growlers and fill up on the Navidad Cerveza for $20.


J & Tony’s Discount Cured Meats and Negroni Warehouse

Keep things cozy this holiday season by indulging in J & Tony’s Hot Buttered Rum. Made with a variety of spices, including cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, along with butter, molosses, brown sugar, and vanilla extract, this sweet concoction is the perfect cocktail to sip while sitting by the fire or enjoying a nice holiday movie at home. Meant to be enjoyed among friends or family (in your quarantine pod of course,) J & Tony’s is selling batches of Hot Buttered Rum mix to heat at home, made to serve 3 to 6 people.

The bar is offering an option that comes with the alcohol for $39.99, as well as a non-alcoholic version for $21.99, each of which can be picked up from J & Tony’s in the East Village.

Moniker General’s Holiday Cocktail Baskets

Featuring rotating recipes and weekly deliveries, San Diegans can enjoy an at-home celebration with Moniker Cocktail Co.’s boozy bundles. This week, The Cocktail Basket is provisioned with the making for a Spiced Pear aperitif and Moniker’s signature Margarita.

Upgraded kits offer add-on wines, including Wildsong Sauvignon Blanc, Cavicchioli 1928 Prosecco and Moniker’s Custom Blend of Woodford Reserve. The Cocktail Baskets range from servings of 10 to 12 cocktails and vary in pricing from $120 to $175. Orders must be submitted by Wednesday at 4PM for free Friday delivery throughout Point Loma and Ocean Beach or pick-up at Moniker General. DM @monickercocktailco to place an order.

Saint Archer’s Holiday IPA

Just in time for the holiday season, Saint Archer Brewing Company has released their newest brew, the Holiday IPA. The latest in their ongoing series of R&D beers, the Holiday IPA is a classic take on the IPA style, incorporating the American, Pacific Northwest hop varietals Chinook, Cascade, and Centennial to provide a black tea, lemon, floral, and grapefruit aroma. Crystal malts give the beer a sweet, caramel, honey finish.

Available in 16 oz. 4-pack cans for pickup or local delivery from each of Saint Archer’s tasting rooms, located in Miramar and Leucadia respectively, the limited-edition beers are offered while supplies last.

Greenfinch Bar at Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa

Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa knows nothing welcomes the holidays like a festive cocktail, and this year Greenfinch, their recently revamped restaurant, will be offering a holiday-themed to-go cocktail pop-up on Fridays and Saturdays from 5pm to 9pm throughout December. Guests can order creations like the English Ginger Snap made with Earl Grey-infused Tito’s Vodka, Amaro Nonino, Persimmon and Ginger Beer, or the Santa Smokes Cigars, made with local distilled Malahat Rum, Amaro Nonino, Benedictine, Drops of Scotch Spiced Cranberry and Mole Bitters.

The full menu can be found here, with each cocktail priced at $16. Orders can be placed by calling the restaurant at 858-964-6500.


Rusticucina

Farm-to-neighborhood eatery, Rusticucina, is ready to give your holidays a Sicilan twist that can be enjoyed at home. Open daily for takeout from 4pm to 8pm, the restaurant is offering a condensed menu of their Sicilian crafted cuisine along with specialty to-go cocktails like the Holiday Martini, a cranberry martini with smoked rosemary for $12. Wine, including the Sparkling House Rosé for $9 a glass and Three Pines, a California Cabernet for $10 a glass or $30 for the bottle, will also be available to-go.

Those picking up their orders can also shop Rusticucina’s Italian Market or pick-up a Charcuterie and Wine board for $25, which serves up to four people.


Garibaldi at InterContinental San Diego

Alfresco bar and restaurant, Garibaldi, located inside the InterContinental San Diego waterfront hotel, has the perfect recipe to keep you warm this holiday season. Director of Food and Beverage Jeff Josenhans has provided a recipe for an Amaro Toddy, a hot cocktail with your choice of amaro, lemon, honey and spices. In addition to the below recipe, Jeff has a few tips for the holidays including stocking your home bar with a combination of sweet spice and smoke with his personal favorites including the Sagamore Double Rye and Talisker Single Malt Scotch. He also recommends sprucing up your cocktails with a seasonal garnish such as Douglas Fir, fresh cranberries, or clove-studded citrus wedges.

Amaro Toddy Recipe

Ingredients

1 part Mirto (Sardinian Amaro like Averna Amaro <https://www.amaroaverna.com/>, but can be substituted with your favorite amaro)

1 part Hot Water

1 tsp honey per every 10oz of cocktail recipe above

Garnish/soak clove-spiked lemon wedge into cocktail

Instructions

Add all liquid ingredients together. Heat up to desired temperature using pan, espresso wand if extra warmth is desired. Add clove spiked lemon wedges into cocktail or vessel, strain upon pouring into smaller glasses or leave in singular cocktail as a garnish.

Cheers! And stay healthy, San Diego!

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