Best winter cocktails

Try these ten seasonal sippers.

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  • Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

    Shiprock at Aldea
    Sage, a traditional herbal companion to turkey, breaks out on its own in this savory wintertime libation. The muddled green leaf magnifies the botanicals in Plymouth gin, which is delicately balanced with refreshing lemon juice and a hint of bracing ginger syrup. Orange blossom water and a long twist of the fruit round out the balanced, delicate drink. 31 W 17th St between Fifth and Sixth Aves (212-675-7223). $12.

  • Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

    The North Atlantic Cocktail at The Beagle
    Reflecting the Greenmarket's chilly weather bounty, head bartender Dan Greenbaum spotlights autumn's quintessential fruit---the apple---with this dark and stirred drink. He uses French cider brandy Daron Calvados to rep the fruit's fermented flavors, and bolsters it with herbaceous Bndictine and sweet Blandy's five-year-old Malmsey Madeira. A heavy dousing of Angostura bitters tempers the drink's richness, and a shaving of fragrant nutmeg speckles its surface. 162 Ave A between 10th and 11th Sts (212-228-6900). $12.

  • Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

    Chicago Fizz at Bar Pleiades
    Windy City transplant Maura McGuigan brought this forgotten garnet classic from its hometown to New York. Approximating a frothy, chilled-down version of mulled wine, the light sipper gets a tannic bite from fruity Noval Black port, warm baking-spice flavors from Angostura and raisin notes from pungent Brugal Anejo rum. Lemon juice lends brightness, and a shake with an egg white, plus a soda topper, aerates the whole thing. The Surrey, 20 E 76th St between Fifth and Madison Aves (212-772-2600). $16.

  • Photograph: Daniel Krieger

    Port of Call at Clover Club
    This festive ruby-red cobbler takes its cues from Thanksgiving's cranberry relish dish. First, bartender Tom Macy simmers the berries with sugar until they break down. The fresh preserves, along with house-made cinnamon-bark syrup, play off the port's dry-fruit flavors and a juniper backbone provided by mild Gordon's Gin. Macy bumps up the spice with Bitter Truth Jerry Thomas Own Decanter Bitters, pours the tart mixture over crushed ice, and dolls it up with mint, a blackberry and a raspberry. 210 Smith St between Baltic and Butler Sts, Cobble Hill, Brooklyn (718-855-7939). $12.

  • Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

    Rock, Paper, Scissors at Death & Company
    Inspired by rocky-road ice cream, head bartender Thomas Waugh reimagines the kid-friendly delight as an elegant boozy nip. Ron Zacapa 23-Year Rum (Waugh calls it a "vanilla bomb") and Carpano Antica jointly play the role of marshmallow, while nutty Warre's Otima tawny port mimics the walnuts and adds a hint of cherry. A splash of crme de cacao accents the cocoa notes in Bitterman's Xocolatl Mole Bitters, and Angostura bitters balance out the sweetness. 433 E 6th St between First Ave and Ave A (212-388-0882). $13.

  • Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

    A La Mode at Dutch Kills
    Karin Stanley whipped up this soul-warming fireside mug to riff on the flavors of a freshly baked apple pie: Hot farmers' market cider melds with sweet Elijah Craig bourbon and vanilla-scented Spanish liqueur Licor 43. She crowns the steaming glass with lightly whipped organic cream from local dairy Milk Thistle Farm, and a fresh grating of nutmeg. 27-24 Jackson Ave at Dutch Kills St, Long Island City, Queens (718-383-2724). $11.

  • Photograph: Dale May

    Maison Pimm's Cobbler at Maison Premiere
    Bartender Maxwell Britten considered taking his popular signature Pimm's Cup off the menu, but fearing a customer revolt, he instead nudged the summery concoction into autumn with fall fruits and spices. Sweet Granny Smith apple juice, tart cranberry and spicy ginger syrup add the harvest-time flavors to the Pimm's base. Britten shakes the mixture with mint and orange and lime wedges, and garnishes the tall tipple with a plume of mint and brandied cherries. 298 Bedford Ave between Grand and South 1st Sts, Williamsburg, Brooklyn (347-335-0446). $11.

  • Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

    Fell's Point Eggnog at Mas (la grillade)
    To create this yuletide quaff, head barkeep Shiraz Noor looked to his birthplace, home to the Madeira-spiked Baltimore Eggnog, and put a chocolaty twist on the '40s classic. He blends rich Valrhona 68-percent chocolate and earthy cocoa powder into a lush base of eggs, milk and caramely Diplomtico Reserva Exclusiva rum. Fortified Portuguese wine cuts through the richness with palate-cleansing acid and a red-fruit finish, and a grind of black Tellicherry tops the drink off with peppery aromatics. 28 Seventh Ave South between Bedford and Leroy Sts (212-255-1795). $10.

  • Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

    Madame George at the Raines Law Room
    Ginger, stewed dark cherries and lime come together in Meaghan Dorman's wintry update on the dark and stormy. Replacing rum of the tropical original, Dorman partners smooth Bushmills Black Bush Irish Whiskey with Cherry Heering brandy, blending fruit and spice. Piquant house-made ginger syrup and lime juice add zip, while soda water and a single brandied cherry top the bubbly refresher. 48 W 17th St between Fifth and Sixth Aves (no phone). $14.

  • Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

    Spiced Pumpkin Flip at Saxon + Parole
    This creamy dessert libation brings to mind a boozy pumpkin pie: Almond liqueur amaretto and mellow W.L. Weller bourbon (a wheat variety that is softer than rye-based whiskeys) provide extra nuttiness, and a whole egg gives the shaken drink a foamy body. A double dose of pumpkin---in the form of butter and ale---balances it with extra richness and crisp acidity. 316 Bowery at Bleecker St (212-254-0350). $13.

Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Shiprock at Aldea
Sage, a traditional herbal companion to turkey, breaks out on its own in this savory wintertime libation. The muddled green leaf magnifies the botanicals in Plymouth gin, which is delicately balanced with refreshing lemon juice and a hint of bracing ginger syrup. Orange blossom water and a long twist of the fruit round out the balanced, delicate drink. 31 W 17th St between Fifth and Sixth Aves (212-675-7223). $12.

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