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5 Winter Libations to Try Now

BY Allison Bawden | January 30, 2017 | Feature Features

Whether you're toasting to Valentine's Day or warming up your winter with friends, these five local spots are serving up innovative concoctions and unbeatable atmosphere.
BiCE's “Sweet Kiss” mixes vodka, Godiva chocolate and white chocolate liquor, Frangelico hazelnut liquor and cream.

1. If Valentine’s Day plans are in your future, pay a visit to Fig Tree Café in Hillcrest, Pacific Beach or Liberty Station. Exclusively in February, the S.D. staple is offering two new drink specials. The dark chocolate covered strawberry latte ($6.50) is a non-alcoholic treat boasting two shots of espresso and is topped with house-made strawberry whipped cream, fresh strawberry and dark chocolate drizzle. For a sip with a kick, the floral mimosa flight ($14) is sure to get the heart pumping with four lovely mimosa choices such as rose, lavender, pomegranate hibiscus and strawberry grapefruit, all garnished with dried florals encapsulated with ice. Fig Tree Café, Hillcrest, Pacific Beach, Liberty Station

2. Grab your significant other and check out how The Nolen’s million dollar view got its reputation. Perched on the 14th story of the downtown Courtyard Marriott, the views of Coronado and the twinkling skyline will make any evening romantic. Enjoy the crisp rooftop air with a drink from The Nolen’s winter cocktail menu like Beyond the Pines ($14), a combination of gin, cointreau, orgeat, grapefruit, rosemary and Peychaud’s for a gourmet chilled refreshment. The Nolen, Downtown

3. Try Abnormal Beer Co. for a local experience that has something on the menu for even the pickiest of patrons. The brewery, winery and fine dining combo is a leader in collaboration, as head brewer Derek Gallanosa recently selected The Answer Brewery in Richmond, Va. to create a chocolate covered strawberry imperial stout aptly named Hugs and Kisses ($9). Head to the outpost’s sister-restaurant, The Cork & Craft, for dinner Feb. 14 and keep the x’s and o’s going even longer by filling a 32 oz. refillable growler ($22) to take home. Abnormal Beer Co., Rancho Bernardo

4. Noble Experiment is known for its moody lighting and super secret locale, making it the perfect spot for a cozy evening. Enjoy an outing at this elusive speakeasy on Valentine’s Day for a sweet kiss—or more specifically, a Buddha’s Kiss cocktail ($15). Locals are buzzing about this drink that offers an exotic twist of Thai tea-infused vodka and simple syrup. Make reservations early! Noble Experiment, Downtown

5. Take your date to Italy—or at least one of S.D.’s best renditions. At BiCE, in addition to a sophisticated menu of award-winning Italian dishes, bartender Alex has created the Sweet Kiss ($14), a blend of Stolichnaya vanilla vodka, Godiva chocolate liqueur, Godiva white chocolate liqueur, Frangelico hazelnut liqueur and cream. The cocktail is finished with sugar hearts that bring the experience to a sweet close. BiCE, Downtown

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