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Get Into the Holiday Spirit(s): Cocktailing 101

This year, impress your friends and family with a delightfully boozy line up that’s complete with time-honored classics as well as trendy newcomers. The perfect wet bar is filled with sparkling mixers, fruit and olive garnishes, and of course, ice! These featured spirits and cordials serve as an awesome base for some festive cocktails that are guaranteed to get the party started.

What you’ll need: highball glasses, cocktail glasses and a cocktail shaker.

Bitter is Better

At least in your cocktail, it is. Stocking your bar with Bittermen’s Bitters offers a crafted cocktail experience at home. Just a few splashes can add complex flavor and balance to nearly any drink, including an Old Fashioned. In this Gin and Tonic recipe, we suggest using the grapefruit variety, but Bittermen’s also offers plenty of other sweet, savory, and mildly spicy options.

Hopped Grapefruit Gin and Tonic

For best results, build this cocktail in a highball glass filled with ice. Highball glasses work best for cold drinks that are generally enjoyed with a straw.

1.5 oz Gray Whale Gin

*Gray Whale Gin is small batch and distilled locally in Southern California. It is sustainably made with kelp and botanicals from the whale’s yearly migration route and includes notes of pine, floral and umami.

3/4 oz Bittermens Commonwealth Tonic Liqueur

5 drops Bittermens Hopped Grapefruit Bitters

4 oz soda water

Stir and serve with a grapefruit rind twist.


Go All in for Aperol

Well-known for its Italian origin, gorgeous color, and distinct flavor profile, Aperol aperitivo boasts a tangy orange taste with subtle hints of herbs and vanilla. Enjoy it on its own or concoct this seasonal take on a classic Aperol spritz.

Autumn Aperol Spritz

For best results, build this cocktail in a highball glass filled with ice.

3/4 oz lemon juice

Dash of vanilla extract

1/2 oz simple syrup

1 oz Aperol

1 1/2 oz Prosecco

1/2 oz club soda

In a cocktail shaker, stir together lemon juice, vanilla extract, simple syrup, and Aperol. Pour into a highball glass filled with ice. Top with club soda and Prosecco from our Bristol Farms Wine and Spirits Department. Garnish with fresh pear slice.


Say Cheers with Cointreau

Made with sweet and bitter orange peels, this highly regarded French-made triple sec is often enjoyed on the rocks as an apéritif or digestif. It’s also a staple ingredient in any proper Cosmopolitan.

The Classic Cosmo

For best results, serve this drink in a cocktail/martini glass. The large mouth of the glass allows the drinker to get close to the surface of the cocktail to fully enjoy its scent and taste.

1 1/2  oz Loft + Bear Vodka

*Distilled locally in Downtown Los Angeles, this award winning vodka is made with pure California mountain spring water and is characterized by its sweet, rich aroma and silky smooth mouth feel.

3/4 oz Cointreau

1/2 oz cranberry juice

Splash freshly-squeezed lime juice

Place a cocktail glass in the freezer to chill. Combine vodka, Cointreau, cranberry juice and lime juice in a cocktail shaker and fill it halfway with ice. Shake until the shaker is frosted and strain into the chilled glass. Garnish with lime slice.


Make Your Own Martini

Whether you prefer your martini with vodka or gin, one ingredient always remains the same: vermouth. Our pick is Dolin vermouth, produced in France. Its flavor profile is slightly grassy with aromas of lime, florals, and white wine. It can be enjoyed as an apéritif or in many classic cocktails.

The Modern Martini

For best results, serve this drink in a cocktail/martini glass.

2 1/2 oz Gray Whale Gin or Loft + Bear Vodka

1/2 oz Dolin Vermouth

In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, combine gin/vodka and vermouth. Stir well, then strain into cocktail/martini glass. Garnish with olive.

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