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Best Restaurants In Vancouver: Christmas Cocktails

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GINGLE ALL THE WAY
Vancouver bartenders are busy creating some special holiday cocktails. | Tableau bar bistro

'Tis the season to be jolly—and what better way to get you dancing under the mistletoe than by partaking of some seasonal spirits?

Yes, no two words ever worked so harmoniously as Christmas and cocktail, so we decided it was time to learn what it is that makes a proper winter warmer in a glass.

Ron Oliver, co-owner and bartender extraordinaire of Chinatown's latest hip space, Mamie Taylor's, says there are a few drinks that can't help but tickle your festive fancy.

There are three basic categories that people turn to as the weather chills and the holidays begin in earnest: eggnog, toddies and punches.

"As people have become more educated about cocktails, and classic cocktails, they have begun to embrace the idea of a drink with egg in it," he says.

Mamie Taylor's holiday libation evolved from playing with the idea of citrus and egg —the traditional combo that features in a whisky sour, Oliver says.

People just can't get enough of eggnog, he says, so they decided to go for a "flip"—which has the elements of eggnog, without the addition of cream.

"We came up with a Pressed Apple Flip", he explains.

Check out Mamie Taylor's Pressed Apple Flip Recipe, plus more cocktails from around Vancouver and beyond. Story continues after slideshow.

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The delectable combination melds the spiced apple brandy of Calvados, with cloudy apple juice, port and, of course, a whole egg, frothed up to make a wonderful creamy smooth texture.

Mamie Taylor's also spent a good deal of time perfecting their own in house eggnog recipe, and are happy to whip you up a custom creation based on your spirit of choice.

Thankfully, such lengths are not necessary if you are looking to bring a touch of holiday sparkle to what you serve at home, Oliver insists.

"Just add a touch of bubble to any classic cocktail to make it festive."

Bar manager of Tableau Bar Bistro, J.S. Dupuis has created a couple of Christmas cocktails with a certain gentleman in a big red suit firmly in mind.

His GIN-gle All The Way takes white cranberry juice and the festive flavour of peppermint liqueur to turn a classic martini into Christmas in a glass. This, Dupuis believes, is the drink Mrs. Claus would choose as she sends hubby off on his merry way to work.

For the main man himself, Dupuis has created the Santa Sip, that sticks with gin, but gussies it up with Amaretto, eggnog and—for a true Canadian touch— maple syrup.

If you prefer to warm the cockles of your heart with dreams of sunnier climes, then head to Gastown's Bambudda for bartender Buck Friend's decadently named Pre-Opium, that hits the tropical tradition of a Piña Colada with a blast of warm white chocolate and coconut foam. You'll barely notice you're not actually under a palm tree in a bikini.

Have a very merry one!

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