Holiday Sippers: La Jolla pubs serve drinks to welcome winter


Shaken or stirred, muddled or mixed, holiday cocktails boasting “spirits of the season” are readily available in La Jolla. Here are a few to whet your whistle.

Beaumont’s Eatery in Bird Rock

At Beaumont’s, 5662 La Jolla Blvd., bar manager Gavin McManes takes seasonal cocktails seriously. His latest creation, “The Partridge in a Pear Tree,” uses seasonal ingredients and the opportunity to play on words. The cocktail is comprised of Grey Goose Pear vodka, agave and lemon juice, shaken up and topped with Champagne and a rosemary sprig for tree-like decoration.

Already on the menu is a winter- inspired cocktail made with walnuts. “Being fall and winter, there are a lot of bourbon- and whiskey-based cocktails,” McManes said. “So I have one where I toasted walnuts and cinnamon and infuse them into some Maker’s Mark Bourbon. With it and black walnut bitters, I make a walnut and cinnamon old-fashioned. It has a really nice wintery feel.”

Public House in the Village

San Diego may be the craft beer capital, but nothing says winter like thoughts of Belgium. Being a mostly Belgian beer bar, Public House at 830 Kline St. has some wintery beers on tap. “We try to get some special holiday

beers from Halloween to New Year’s because most breweries come out with special beers that have a lot more winter spices in them — cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves — and tend to be darker beers. In the wintertime, people want to drink stouts and porters with chocolate and coffee flavors,” said Jenna Marquand, general manager at Public House.

But fear not the darkness of the beers, Marquand says. Just because a beer has a dark hue, it might not be as strong as you think. “People get scared by the color because they don’t know the color of the beer is not always going to indicate how dark it will taste,” she said. “People say they like Stella Artois and we try to give them something new they might like. Some beers drink way lighter than your average lager.” However, some will be stronger, so always check the Alcohol by Volume (ABV).

Cusp Dining & Drinks at Hotel La Jolla

Embracing the warm and snuggly side of cocktails, Cusp Dining & Drinks offers Hot Toddies and Irish Coffees.

Their hot toddy is a mix of Buffalo Trace bourbon, honey lemon juice and hot water. Expertly spiced, the toddy is not only a heart-warming drink, but some people use it to chase away winter sniffles. Irish Coffees are sweetened and spiked with Bushmills whiskey.

Cusp Dining & Drinks is located on the 11th floor of Hotel La Jolla at 7955 La Jolla Shores Drive.

■ What is your favorite seasonal cocktail in La Jolla? Let us know by e-mailing