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Cocktail Hour: Holiday Spirits


Cinnamon, walnuts, pine—San Diego cocktail menus are full of winter fl avors. To embrace a season of merry mixology, here are three must-try drinks.


Fall in New England at Grant Grill

Cory Alberto, Grant Grill’s “chef de bar,” drew upon his childhood in New Hampshire and the smell of fall bonfires for this addictive whiskey-based cocktail that also includes smoked apple juice, maple and walnut liqueurs, and cinnamon bitters.


The Bellman at Starlite

Dmitri Dziensuwski, Starlite’s bar manager, calls this one a “belly warmer.” Served room temperature, it’s a rich and boozy combo of brandy, rye whiskey, Swedish punsch, black walnut bitters, Peychaud’s, orange zest, and a cinnamon stick garnish.


The Catholic at Cusp​

Two words: pine syrup. Bar Manager Demian Carpenter’s aromatic twist on a traditional whiskey sour consists of Dickel Rye, King’s Ginger liqueur, pine syrup, grapefruit bitters, lemon juice, and egg white. The pine syrup’s made in-house by infusing simple syrup with pine needles and a bit of eucalyptus.

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