Dirty Habit // Photo: Drew Hairston

8 Warming Winter Cocktails

‘Tis the season for jolly merriment and drinking to stay warm – because nothing provides warmer layers than rounds of spiked toddies and hot chocolate. Check out these eight cocktails that will keep you nice and toasty for whatever Polar Vortex, Snowpocalypse or Bomb Cyclone rolls into DC this winter. 

Astoria DC

1521 17th St. NW, DC
Known for serving up heat in the form of Sichuan-style dishes, the sultry Art Deco bar offers more ways than one for patrons to warm up. From chili wontons to numbingly spicy water boiled beef (a staff favorite), the word “flammable” is taken to new levels. Eat your heat or pony up to the bar and order the seasonal Whispers of Winter. With rye whiskey, ruby port, oloroso sherry and brown sugar, Astoria’s spin on the Hot Toddy spotlights fortified wines. 

Blue Duck Tavern

1201 24th St. NW, DC
Cozy up at the Park Hyatt’s outdoor garden terrace suited up for the winter months with fire pits, soft blankets and hot beverages. The Fire Garden at Blue Duck Tavern is armed for the colder weather with a bevy of warming drinks including their take on the traditional Toddy. The Forbidden Forest with local Copper Fox rye whiskey (infused with Lapsang souchong tea), saffron honey, Meyer lemon juice is capped with black truffle foam and cracked pink peppercorns. 

Conrad DC

950 New York Ave. NW, DC
Head to the City Center destination for a luxe Apres ski experience featuring themed decor, staff decked out in Moncler gear, dishes fitting for a day on the slopes, fire pits (with blankets at the ready) and warm cocktails including a deliciously rich hot chocolate spiked with your choice of Illegal Mezcal or Patron XO. 

Dirty Habit

555 8th St NW, DC
An ideal pit stop after a day of ice skating at the Sculpture Garden or walking around the National Mall, get toasty with a seasonal hot gin punch made with Monkey 47 Schwarzvald Gin, Cardamom, Bouquet Garni and Blood Orange. The outdoor patio is outfitted with fire pits and blanket throws to add an extra layer of warmth.

Hook Hall

3400 Georgia Ave. NW, DC
The Park View tavern is channeling all of the ski chalet vibes this winter. Cozy sectional seating, heated areas, and plenty of plush blankets and pillows add to the ski lodge feel. Sip on a traditional Gluhwein while noshing on Bavarian bites such as pretzels served with spicy mustard. 

Miracle on 7th Street

1843 7th St. NW, DC
The infamous pop-up bar has returned for another season, armed with a collection of festive cocktails. This year’s decor pays homage to baseball hometown heroes, the Nationals, with oversized bats and balls, and Baby Shark paraphernalia. Guests looking to warm up from their time spent outdoors waiting in line to gain entry should opt for A Christmas Prince and Chill made with Maker’s Mark bourbon, red wine hot chocolate and vanilla marshmallow.

Ritz-Carlton Georgetown

3100 South St. NW, DC
In honor of the holidays, the Living Room at the Georgetown Ritz will be unveiling a new cocktail each day of December leading to Christmas. The merry libations include everything from cinnamon-infused gin to boozy takes on eggnog. If you’re looking for seasonal sippers post-holiday, order the warming Winter Spice with whiskey, cognac, spiced syrup, lemon juice and hot apple cider, which will be available throughout the season.

Stable

1324 H St. NE, DC
The Alpine-themed restaurant is known for serving up Swiss staples like traditional cheese fondue, raclette and spaetzle but come wintertime, guests can imbibe seasonal creations filled with schnaps and spices. Looking for something over the top? Opt for the Feuerzange with mulled wine flambéed, Goldschläger and cinnamon liquor.