Going out for cocktails is one of life’s greatest pleasures—but so is staying in for them. Every drink connoisseur needs a home bar to match, so here are a few suggestions to spruce things up.
Grand Marnier Cordon Rouge
With a recipe dating back to 1880—and unchanged since then—Grand Marnier Cordon Rouge is a timeless liqueur that has earned its place on any bar shelf. With an alluring tropical, bitter citrus aroma that seeps from the bottle as soon as the cork is pulled, and a beautiful glossy orange colour that coats the glass like velvet, this spirit is one to be cherished and shared. The cognac blend is aged for six months in oak casks to help give it that irresistible sweet-but-not-too-sweet flavour of toffee and orange.
Special for the 2017 holidays, Grand Marnier has released a sleek limited-edition gift box (obtainable at select B.C. liquor stores) that takes its inspiration from the year Cordon Rouge was created by Louis-Alexandre Marnier Lapostolle in France. Have this liqueur in a cocktail or by itself—it shines either way.
Tiffany & Co.’s Gold Vermeil Crazy Straw
Part of Tiffany’s Everyday Objects collection is the Crazy Straw—a playful yet sophisticated take on the childhood classic item. This one might not be for blowing bubbles in chocolate milk, but it is sure to be just as fun to use nonetheless. Made of sterling silver with gold vermeil and an enamel accent in signature Tiffany blue, the piece is available at the brand’s Burrard Street location, as well as its holiday pop-up at Holt Renfrew Vancouver. Just imagine employing it for sips of sweet daquiri or tart margarita.
Peak Ice Works Crushed Ice Tray
When regular ice cubes are just too, well, regular, consider pouring drinks over jagged crushed ice. The Peak Ice Works tray, designed by W&P and available at Walrus home shop in the Cambie Village, is BPA-free and dishwasher-safe, and comes with a lid that also acts as a funnel to help guide the ice into the glass. It only produces a single serving of ice, but the thin silicone mould means the water freezes quickly between fills.
Rose Gold Cobbler Shaker
Plated in luxurious rose gold, this lustrous cocktail shaker is made of professional-quality Japanese steel. Available at South Granville’s classic store Atkinson’s, the three-piece tool is sure to elevate anyone from mere mixer to mix-master.
Seedlip Spice 94
For those who prefer to keep things booze-free but don’t want to miss out on the fun, consider Seedlip non-alcoholic spirits. The British company harvests natural ingredients that are then cold macerated, distilled, and blended. The result? Liquor-free liquor that doesn’t skimp on taste. It is already served at some of the world’s best bars, including Dandelyan in London and French Laundry in Napa, and is even on the menu at Vancouver’s own Rosewood Hotel Georgia. Available in Western Canada exclusively at Litchfield, Seedlip’s Spice 94 is made with cardamom, oak, all spice, grapefruit, and lemon. Cheers to that.
Walter Craft Caesar Rim
From the makers of Canada’s Walter all-natural craft Caesar mix (disclaimer: this author’s brother is one of its owners) comes a proprietary rim salt that is free of gluten, high-fructose corn syrup, and artificial colours and flavours. Comprised of salt flakes, smoked paprika, organic cane sugar, dehydrated garlic, onion powder, vegetable oil, and spices, this bottled rim mix raises the Caesar from basic to bold.
Baccarat Harmonie Tumbler
Nothing says crystal quite like Baccarat, so why not splurge on some elegant tumblers? The chic, classic Harmonie collection features consecutive parallel cuts that flow down the glass, creating a layered yet clean look. This bestselling design is part of a collection that also includes highball glasses and an ice bucket.
“Cold Spell, Cocktails and Savouries for a Northern Winter”
A collaboration between Whitehorse chef Michele Genest (writer of the bestselling cookbook The Boreal Feast) and Free Pour Jenny’s bitters founder Jennifer Tyldesley, Cold Spell, Cocktails and Savouries for a Northern Winter features an array of cocktail and snack recipes using ingredients native to the Canadian North. Enjoy everything from mulled wine and “Moose Milk” to biscotti and spiced mixed nuts in this fun coiled book, which is ready for the taking on Free Pour Jenny’s website.
So mix up, drink up, and be merry. Someone’s got to.
Explore the wonderful world of cocktails.