All Abuzz: 15 Coffee Cocktails to Add a Spring to Your Step

We love coffee. We love booze. Put the two together and that’s heaven in a glass. These double-amped cocktails showcase the mastery of mixology combined with the talented touch of a blue ribbon barista. That means they work for breakfast, a mid-afternoon break, or at dinnertime drinks (or all three if it’s one of those days). Here are 15 coffee cocktails that will have you buzzing in no time.

Travelle Kitchen + Bar, Chicago, Illinois
The Midnight Train to Portland cocktail should be renamed the One-Way Ticket to Buzzville. Espresso tequila forms the backbone of the ruby red drink, which gets its hue from Pinot Noir. Pear wine and aromatic bitters add sweetness and bite. Make a reservation at Travelle Kitchen + Bar.

Coffee Cocktails

E.P. + L.P., West Hollywood, California
There’s an Asian accent to this aromatic sipper. Thai chilies, star anise, and cinnamon spice up the espresso, which is mixed with juniper-rich genever, cognac, and bitters to create a truly buzzy bevvie. We don’t recommend drinking more than one of them after dinner if you want to go to bed anytime soon. If your plans include not sleeping, order two. Make a reservation at E.P. + L.P.

Coffee Cocktails

Estrellón, Madison, Wisconsin
There’s a double caffeine kick to this cocktail thanks to St. George coffee liqueur and cold brewed coffee. Fortified with Spanish brandy, bar manager Mike Lu mixes in some Angostura bitters to add depth and lemony oleo-saccharum for sweetener. Guaranteed to put pep in your step. Make a reservation at Estrellón.

Coffee Cocktails

Siegel’s 1941, Las Vegas, Nevada
Made with 12-year aged rum, espresso liqueur, vanilla syrup, and Angostura bitters, the Have a Cigar cocktail is a worthy post-gig pick-me-up for rock stars. Or for you when you’re convinced you’re Roger Waters. You can almost hear Pink Floyd in the background as you sip it, “Come in here, dear boy, have a cigar/You’re gonna go far, you’re gonna fly.” Make a reservation at Siegel’s 1941.

Coffee Cocktails

Rockit Bar & Grill, Chicago, Illinois
Who could resist a cocktail called the Drunken Monk? Not us! Made with Evan Williams Bourbon, Frangelico, chocolate syrup, espresso, and steamed milk, it’s topped off with a cap of flame-kissed marshmallow. Make a reservation at Rockit Bar & Grill.

Coffee Cocktails

Sissy’s Southern Kitchen & Bar, Dallas, Texas
Bardstown Coffee is for java junkies who need something stronger than Starbucks. The coffee cocktail gets a considerable boost from a healthy dose of Jim Beam infused with hazelnuts, vanilla, cinnamon, and allspice. As if that wasn’t enough, there’s a finishing layer of Maker’s Mark-enriched whipped cream on top. Make a reservation at Sissy’s Southern Kitchen & Bar.

Coffee Cocktails

Sushisamba, New York, New York
This is not your crazy aunt’s espresso martini. The Café Millonario features coffee-washed Bacardi Black rum, espresso, Tonka bean-infused maple syrup, dark chocolate syrup, and bitters, plus a shower of chocolate powder and a trio of coffee beans on top. Actually, you should definitely order one of these for your crazy aunt. She deserves better. Make a reservation at Sushisamba.

Coffee Cocktails

Three Dots and a Dash, Chicago, Illinois
This Polynesian potable packs a punch courtesy of some cold brew coffee. Oh, yeah, and also tequila, dark rum, and overproof rum. For a tropical flourish, there’s a mélange of passion fruit, lime, and pineapple juices added. Warning: don’t try to walk out with the glass. The tiki gods frown upon such bad behavior and may lay a curse upon you. Make a reservation at Three Dots and a Dash.

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Protein Packed Potables: 11 Meaty Cocktails for Carnivores

There’s no fork and knife required to get your fill of meat these days. Bartenders are creatively working a plethora of protein packed components into their cocktails – from chorizo fat-washed bourbon and prosciutto-infused bourbon to pork enhanced bitters and a butchery’s worth of garnishes. Ron Swanson would approve heartily. Here are 11 meaty cocktails for carnivores.

Scarpetta, Miami Beach, Florida
Rum, rye, and dry sherry are the boozy foundation of the Lombardia. The cocktail is perked up with Angostura and orange bitters and then finished off with a strip of crispy pancetta. Make a reservation at Scarpetta.

meaty cocktails

Old Town Pour House, Chicago, Illinois
Here’s a cocktail worthy of a meat eater. The Churchill Bloody Mary is garnished with a trio of proteins: a peppercorn steak medallion, grilled shrimp, and a Slim Jim. You almost don’t need to bother with an entrée if you order it at brunch. Almost. Make a reservation at Old Town Pour House.

Meaty Cocktails

Steak & Whisky, Hermosa Beach, California
Ron Swanson finally has a cocktail to celebrate his meat-loving ways. The eponymous tipple riffs on an Old Fashioned, featuring whiskey, barrel-smoked maple syrup, and bitters. It’s finished off with a meaty nibble from the charcuterie board. Make a reservation at Steak & Whisky.

meaty cocktails

Yardbird Southern Table & Bar, Las Vegas, Nevada
Bacon makes everything better — even bourbon, which is pretty darn awesome anyway. It boosts this spicy Bloody Mary, which comes garnished with a chewy strip of housemade jerky. Make a reservation at Yardbird Southern Table & Bar.

meaty cocktails

Estrellón, Madison, Wisconsin
Chorizo takes a starring role at this Spanish restaurant from James Beard Award winner Tory Miller – even the cocktails. Chorizo fat-washed bourbon is the lead in the aptly titled Chorizo Cocktail, alongside Spanish vermouth, lemon and orange juice, maple syrup, and angostura and blackstrap bitters. Make a reservation at Estrellón.

meaty cocktails

Bar Boulud, New York, New York
Give us lardo over butter any day of the week. The whipped fat is zigzagged across a crispy crostini jutting out of the crimson depths of the Bloody Mary. The rosemary-accented porky spread is a nice counterpoint to the cocktail’s spicy tang and perky acidity. Make a reservation at Bar Boulud.

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Hot Sips: Warm up with Hand-crafted Hot Cocktails

Whether you’re après ski or après work, there’s nothing like snowy peaks of whipped cream atop boozy cocoa or housemade marshmallows as light as clouds over a mountain served alongside. Winter sports fans have been suiting up to hit the slopes for mid-winter break, but even if you’re stuck in your slope-less city, never fear — there are plenty of metropolitan hot cocktails to fill your glass and warm you up no matter what Old Man Winter has in store.

Preston’s, Killington, Vermont
In case blazing down Vermont’s highest peak at full-speed isn’t enough of a rush, some sugar should do the trick. Spiked cocoas are the hottest warm-up on the menu, says Preston’s lead bartender Bruce Noble, including the Snowshed made with peppermint schnapps and hot cocoa and the Double Dipper with vodka and crème de menthe for an extra wintery blast. Skiers or those just along for a great view can enjoy these sweet sips both at Killington Resort Hotel’s newest bar and restaurant, Preston’s or in the resort lodge, which sports floor-to-ceiling windows, leather couches, fireplaces, and views of five states and Canada. Not on the menu — but just as tasty — is complimentary spiked cider for hotel guests who opt for a sleigh ride. Make a reservation at Preston’s.

hot cocktails

Parsnip, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Brand-new Parsnip has replaced the hot-pink walls of its predecessor with a sleek modern look, a reinvented menu — and a Little Green Monster as part of its couture cocktail list. One of its top tipples is made with pisco, sapling maple liqueur, hot coconut cream, toasted pecan bitters, and matcha tea powder, the earthy, emerald-hued beverage of choice in Japan. It’s only befitting for a neighborhood boasting a large international student population in Harvard Square. Make a reservation at Parsnip.

Hot cocktails

Centrolina, Washington, D.C.
When our nation’s capital got walloped with the blizzard of a century, many of the district’s finest soothed themselves with something hot and icy. Centrolina’s Hot Buttered Rum Affogato (affogato is Italian for drowned) traditionally includes a scoop of vanilla gelato topped with hot espresso. Chef Amy Brandwein’s version enhances it with two rums — one spiced — along with housemade brown-sugar simple syrup and a scoop of the eatery’s hand-crafted brown butter ice cream. While it may not be the traditional martini of Washington’s power suits, it’s enough sugar for anyone to power through even the strongest of political storms. Make a reservation at Centrolina.

Hot cocktails

The Silver Dollar Grill, Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Coconut plucked from a sandy beach is about the furthest thing from a ski slope there is — unless you’re clasping a mug full of Cocoa Nut Warmer, featuring coconut vodka, cream of coconut, and hot chocolate topped with whipped cream. Whether it’s après ski or shopping in Town Square, locals and visitors alike belly up to the bar at the Silver Dollar for its rotating selection of hot winter warmers — but they truly go nuts for the Cocoa Nut. It was created by Tracy Denison, just one of several veteran pourers. “Some of our bartenders have been here for over 10 years, so they have an intimate knowledge of what the locals like,” says Sheila McCann of life at the historic Wort Hotel’s watering hole. “We always consult them when trying to develop new cocktails because they all have led very different lives through traveling, dining out, and researching on their own.” Make a reservation at The Silver Dollar Grill.

Hot Cocktails

Bourbon Steak, Washington, D.C.
With a restaurant name like Bourbon Steak, it’s only natural for its new star cocktail to include that spirit, too. For a limited time as part of the Four Seasons Hotels’ Tea & Coffee Cocktail Quarterly series, this Georgetown hot spot is offering up its version of a hot toddy, complete with steaming black tea, lemon juice, honey, and, of course, bourbon. Don’t live in D.C.? No worries — mixologists from many Four Seasons properties across the U.S. and abroad will be creating both hot and cold café-based cocktails through April, served in classic glassware or teapots and coffee cups with seasonal and local ingredients and garnishes. Make a reservation at Bourbon Steak.

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Frost and Bloom: A Connected Event with Vedge + Vernick in Philadelphia

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“There is no beauty without some strangeness.” — Edgar Allan Poe

Under the cold there was, in fact, gold. This week, on a snowy evening in Philadelphia, OpenTable gathered with foodies, lifestyle contributors, and local influencers and chefs Kate Jacoby and Rich Landau of venerated plant-forward restaurant Vedge and Greg Vernick of new American favorite Vernick Food & Drink for Frost and Bloom, an unlikely Valentine’s Day soiree that is part of Connected, our series of talks and gatherings that bring together the restaurant and tech worlds with food, drink, and local culture.

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Seeking a deeper and unconventional connection to the notion of love, we set out to dig deep within the chill of winter for true connections — to food, to drink, and to one another, turning the holiday and its all-too-often saccharine associations on its head. Drawing inspiration from mavericks such as Saint Valentine, Chaucer, and Spenser, Philadelphia’s storied The Mask and Wig Club was given an enchanting costume of winter blooms and evocative artwork from Nitsua, Kyle Huff, and Conrad Benner, curated by OpenTable brand director Cort Cunningham, and the intrigue kicked off at 6:30PM with food and drink to mirror the mood dreamed up by these top chefs and Vedge beverage director Ross Maloof.

Drinks

We shrugged off the chill of the evening within the warm confines of The Mask and Wig Club as hearts were gently melted with intoxicating piano music, and we sipped one-of-a-kind creations from Maloof that embodied the spirit of the evening, including the Cupid Makes Me Retch with vodka, chocolate, espresso, beet, and rose water rinse, and the non-alcoholic Pickpocket, forged out of plum, Meyer lemon, thyme, citrus, and club soda. Guests scooped up cards with quotes about love in all its many forms as they nibbled on sexy bites from Landau and Jacoby, such as  smoked hearts of palm on crostini, jerk spiced carrots with rutabaga “fondue”, celery root “cacio e pepe” with fregola and black pepper, and crispy sunchokes with black garlic buffalo sauce and celery leaf ranch.

food

The festivities later moved upstairs, where DJ duo Maggs Bruchez raised the temperature in the room, laying down the PHL’s best beats. Chef Vernick and his team headed behind the burners for the second half of the subtly sultry evening, serving a trio of savory dishes featuring flavors designed to delight the senses, from salt cod and semolina croquettes with saffron cream and avocado crostini with spicy radish to tuna poke complemented by macadamia nuts and sweet soy and spicy veal meatballs swathed in ancho chili caramel served on appropriately dagger-like toothpicks.Continue Reading