Tag Archives: Christmas

The Oxonian

drinks_oxonian_sma 12BB original

3 parts Advocaat (Dutch/Belgian eggnog liqueur)
3 parts ESB ale (Extra Special/Strong Bitter)
1 part (or to taste) spiced brown sugar syrup (recipe below)

Add all ingredients to a glass of any shape or sort and stir to combine. Some may like a cube or two of ice. Grate a bit of fresh nutmeg over the top


For Syrup:

Dissolve 2 cups light brown or evaporated cane sugar into 1 cup water over low heat
Add 0.25 teaspoon each of ground cinnamon, ground cloves and ground ginger
Stir until combined, and allow to cool

Featured Glassware: Boston Double Old-Fashioned by Villeroy & Boch

* * *

It was roughly around this past Halloween that we answered our nation’s call. By “our nation”, we mean PBS.org, and by “answered”, we mean responded to their email requesting an original drink for a collection of holiday recipes. Obviously, it was an honor to be among those chosen by PBS, but coming up with a new Christmas-themed concoction was a bit of a challenge. Not only did the drink need to be simultaneously new and fresh while still conjuring up Christmas traditions, it also needed an appropriate moniker — something that could rationally be applied yet esoteric enough not to have been previously taken.

Read More…

Sloe Sugarplum Fizz from the Too Hot Tamales

By Lesley Jacobs Solmonson


1.5 oz Plymouth Sloe Gin
0.5 oz Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
1/2 fresh Plum, roughly chopped
0.25 oz Agave Syrup (see below)
1 to 2 splashes Club Soda

1 slice fresh plum dipped in sugar, for garnish

Add sloe gin, lemon juice, plum, and agave syrup to a mixing glass
Muddle plum to release juices and flavor
Shake with ice and strain into a collins glass filled with ice
Top with club soda and garnish with plum slice 

Featured GlasswareOctavie Tumbler by Villeroy & Boch

* * *

Back in the mid-80’s, when Los Angeles was just a blip on the foodie radar, I was a college kid hungry to try something other than the “continental cuisine” (heavy sauces, lots of meat and very few salads) I grew up on going to restaurants with my parents.  One night, my best pal – an Angeleno from birth – took me to a new place she had heard about.  It was a nondescript spot – with its metal door and lack of windows, you might not even know it was there – on the incredibly hip Melrose Avenue, and it changed my view of what food could be.  Ironically, I have to admit that I don’t remember a single dish I ate, but in my defense, this was nearly 30 years ago.  What I do remember is the eye-opening experience of dining somewhere that truly celebrated flavors – flavors which I had never tasted before.  The restaurant was CITY, owned by Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Fenniger, long before they rose to the top of the L.A. food chain with their Border Grill restaurants. Read More…

Spiced Curaçao Coffee from Tiare Olsen

2 oz Chairman´s Reserve Spiced Rum
0.25 oz Orange Curaçao
0.25 oz light brown Muscovado Sugar
1 cup freshly brewed strong full-bodied Coffee
Master of Malt Curaçao Bitters
Whipped Cream

Add spiced rum, orange Curaçao, coffee and bitters to a large mug or heat-resistant glass and stir together. Top with whipped cream and dust cinnamon or nutmeg over

Garnish the glass by wrapping a golden bow around it

Featured Glassware:  NewWave Caffè by Villeroy & Boch


* * *


Today, we officially kick off our ‘Tis the Season… for Drinking campaign featuring 12 holiday drinks brought to us by some of our favorite people.  As it happens, today is also St. Lucia Day, the celebration of an Italian saint particularly popular among Scandinavians.  For me, the day holds special significance as a reminder of my Swedish heritage – but not in the way that you might initially think.

With the name David Solmonson, more often than not, people assume that I’m Jewish.  It’s never been an issue – I don’t know why it would be – with the sole exception of the time in 4th or 5th grade when I was randomly called upon and asked to regale my classe with the story of how my family celebrated Hanukah.  There was no preamble or warning, just “David, make with the menorah story.”  Not knowing the menorah story or anything about Hanukah, I did the only thing that came to mind – I told everyone about St. Lucia instead. Read More…

12 Bottle Bar Holiday Gift Guide

One of the greatest challenges I have during the holidays is waiting for the recipients of my gifts to open the things I’ve bought for them. I try to put a good deal of thought into the gifts I give, and there’s no greater reward for a job well done than seeing the joyful expression on someone’s face. On the flipside, I’ve occasionally encountered a “Do you have the receipt?” (my nephew knows well who I’m talking about, so I won’t name him here), but when it all works out right, nothing quite captures the magic of the season like knowing that you’ve made someone else very happy.

For our gift guide this year, we asked ourselves one simple question: What would we want? With that in mind, we went shopping, and below are the 12 items that made our list. If you’re a 12BB fan, one or more of these may make your list too. If you’re shopping for a cocktail-leaning friend, look no further for the perfect gift. There’s something for every price point and something for the booze enthusiast as well as for the master mixologist.

Happy Giving!

Read More…

Here Come the Holidays!

If you haven’t guessed, we love the holidays, and this year we’re particularly excited about our two big holiday events:

The 12BB Holiday Gift Guide

Tomorrow, we’ll be presenting you with the 12 Most Indispensable Gift Ideas for the season.  No matter what your budget, we promise that we’ll have the perfect gift for both the cocktail newbie and bon vivant alike.

Each item has been personally selected by us and, we think, really captures the 12BB spirit — at least, we’d be over the moon to give or receive anything on the list.

‘Tis the Season… for Drinking

Last year, we presented 12 holiday favorites from around the world.  This year, we’ll be doing thing a bit differently, and we think what we have in store is pretty groovy.

Beginning next Monday, we’ll be presenting our 12 Drinks of Christmas and Hanukkah (we thought we’d expand a bit this time out),  with each drink provided by a special friend of ours.  Rather than have us choose what you should be drinking, we’ve asked some dear friends to tell us the drinks which most capture the holidays for them.

And, here’s the fun part:  We’ve lifted the 12BB restrictions, so the sky is the limit.  Since the holidays are about giving, we wanted our guests to be unbridled in their drink selections, and we think that, if you’ve followed the 12BB program so far, this is a great time to let your hair down and try something new.

Happy holidays to you all!  Let the merriment begin…