Do you have a favorite cocktail to order when the snow is blowing? Some winter drinks keep us warm during the cold and and dark days of winter. Others are evocative of a tropical island and use ingredients that are full of sunshine. With the cold temps and snow storms, winter can seem awfully long. We asked some of our favorite restaurants, mixologists, and makers to share their essential cocktails for this winter.
Mad River Distillers - Burlington & Warren
Neil Goldberg - Tasting Room Manager
This winter we're keeping daiquiris alive despite the weather with our aptly named "Winter Daiquiri".
As a rum distillery we of course love simple cocktails that showcase our labor of love, the spirits. In this drink we use our First Run Rum, an aged rum distilled from demerara cane sugar and rested in new oak charred barrels. The rum is robust enough to stand up to the spiced Falernum and helps balance the puckering sourness the lime brings to the party. Mad River Distillers First Run Rum is distilled from scratch in Warren, VT using fair trade demerara sugar. First Run Rum is aged as you would bourbon in charred new oak barrels; this aging transforms the rum into a spirit that can unite the tastes of both rum and whiskey drinkers. It's a delicious aged rum that can be sipped on it's own, but my personal preference is probably to drink it in a daiquiri.
How to Make a Winter Daiquiri:
Combine the following ingredients in cocktail shaker:
2 oz Mad River First Run Rum
3/4 oz Spiced Falernum
1 oz Lime Juice (fresh or cold pressed)
2 Dashes Angostura Bitters
Shake with ice and strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with a star anise pod.
Juniper Bar and Restaurant - Burlington
Matt Farkas at Juniper offered up the “Transcendence.” We can’t wait to try it!
This cocktail is representative of the type of experience I want to convey to a customer who may be visiting Vermont in the winter, but wishing they had one foot firmly in the Caribbean. The Transcendence cocktail offers a familiar Vermont winter aroma with Barr Hill Tom Cat barrel selection 100 proof gin as a solid foundation. Building off the complex yet soft harmony of juniper berries, oak barrels and raw honey I couldn’t help but find myself looking for more support aromatically. Enter..... St. Elizabeth all spice dram. The first ingredient that opened my eyes to complex flavors non tropical that hail from the Caribbean. When traveling the Caribbean I always bring Tom Cat gin to offer to the local bartenders and showcase how well a spirit that captures the essence of Vermont can mingle with tropical flavors. One of those flavors I got introduced to is bitter sweet pineapple infused Campari. This is where a bridge between Vermont gin and Caribbean flavor is built. Adding a splash of ginger beer and a touch of fresh squeezed lime lengthened the drink and gave it some island cred. Close your eyes and with one sip you can transcend the winter cold in Vermont and mentally relocate to a warmer place.
Shake, single strain
**Barr Hill Single Barrel Tom Cat proofed to 100 % abv. Bottled exclusively for Hotel Vermont
We had a rare opportunity to taste a few single barrels at the end of last summer and select one to be our own! What we found was that with a slightly longer time in the barrel and more alcohol by volume created different expressions barrel to barrel. We chose our particular barrel because of its aggressive juniper structure and intense woody aroma. We felt that this was an honest representation of the people who live and work in the northeast kingdom where Barr Hill is currently located. You can only taste this particular version of Tom Cat at Hotel Vermont. So we think it’s a real treat.
Miss Bates is an in-house favorite at our Cider Pub. The bright notes from the grapefruit really complement the cider. bROSé is the second cider we ever made, it naturally pairs well in any cocktail, something about the combination of blueberries and apples and booze makes for a delicious, light cocktail. Perfect for any season!
0.5 oz Elderflower Liqueur
1 oz grapefruit
topped with bROSé
Served in a pint glass with lime garnish