Tyrone Walker // The Post and Courier
Jasine Beck mixes an In Good Spirit eggnog cocktail at The Cocktail Club.
Do you have friends and/or family visiting this holiday season?
Stumped about where to take them for unusual cocktails that aren't of the same ol' vodka-and-soda variety?
We at Charleston Scene did the work for you, so you can do less deliberating and more, well, drinking.
Whether you're searching for a decadent, eggnog-inspired cocktail or something light and savory, there are lots of options to choose from.
And remember to call a cab.
479 King St., 724-9411, www.thecocktailclubcharleston.com
The Cocktail: Trace of Chocolate
Ingredients: Buffalo Trace Bourbon, St. Germain, apple juice, Aztec chocolate bitters, lemon juice
Inventor: John Kalo, bar manager
The Cocktail: In Good Spirit
Ingredients: 10 Cane rum, Hennessy Black, holiday spiced syrup, eggnog, nutmeg
Inventor: Jasmine Beck, partner and beverage director
The Lowdown: "Basically, John wanted to create a chocolate cocktail that wasn't an overly sweet, dessert-like drink," Beck said. "And I came up with In Good Spirit. I wanted to make an eggnog cocktail that even men could enjoy, or anyone else who doesn't usually drink eggnog. But this drink is lightweight and not too sugary."
Price Tags: $9 for In Good Spirit, $10 for Trace of Chocolate
How Long They'll Be Around: Both drinks will be available until the end of winter.
Special Holiday Hours: Open on Christmas Eve.
1067 E. Montague Ave., North Charleston, 225-2675, www.corkbistro.com
The Cocktail: Hibiscus Tulip Kiss
Ingredients: Prosecco, hibiscus, either pomegranate liqueur or Grand Marnier depending on customer's choice
Inventor: Tradd Gibbs, owner
The Lowdown: "When we first opened a couple of winters ago, we put this drink on our cocktail menu," Gibbs said. "It's a very festive drink for the holidays, including New Year's Eve. It's also a good twist on a regular glass of champagne."
Price Tag: $7.50, but it depends on what liqueur you choose to put in it.
How Long It'll Be Around: Through the winter season.
563 King St. downtown, 573-7505, www.homcharleston.com
The Cocktail: Smashing Pumpkin Martini
Ingredients: Pumpkin-infused vodka, amaretto, egg whites, a splash of milk, shaved cinnamon
Inventor: Shay McDonald, chef
The Lowdown: "I wanted to use the pumpkin vodka for the holidays, and create something that tastes like a bite of pie," McDonald said. "The amaretto makes it frothy, and gives it a nice flavor."
Price Tag: $6
How Long It'll Be Around: Through the winter.
Special Holiday Hours: 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Christmas Eve
15 Beaufain St., 793-2230, http://eatatleaf.com
The Cocktail: Cider Jack
Ingredients: Jack Daniel's hard cider, apple liqueur, cinnamon
Inventor: Cole Erdmen, co-owner
The Lowdown: "I started making this drink at home," Erdmen said. "I never much cared for sweet, heavy drinks. This is a good alternative to that. It's also very seasonal with the cinnamon and apple."
Price Tag: $8
How long It'll Be Around: Through January
Special Holiday Hours: Open on Christmas Eve.
90 Folly Road, 766-0323, http://themedbistro.com
The Cocktail: The Skinny Christmas Tree
Ingredients: Vodka, muddled cucumber, plum nectar, simple syrup, champagne topper
Inventor: Aaron Pauole, bar manager
The Lowdown: "Every now and then, I visit Earth Fare, since they're just a few doors down, and check out potential organic ingredients for my bar creations," Pauole said. "I come back with new ideas, and this was one of them. People are into 'skinny' cocktails lately, and this one has holiday flair."
Price Tag: $7
How Long It'll Be Around: Through January
Special Holiday Hours: Open 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Christmas Eve.
10 Linguard St., 534-2155, www.tristandining.com
The Cocktail: The Sparkling Charleston Cosmopolitan
Ingredients: Vodka, Grand Marnier, white peach puree, white cranberry juice, Prosecco, lemon, blood orange wheel as garnish
The Cocktail: The Woodford Reserve Cocktail
Ingredients: Woodford Reserve, Galliano, sweet vermouth, cinnamon maple syrup, lemon
The Cocktail: Gingerbread Martini
Ingredients: American Honey, Kahlua, Domaine de Canton, Tuaca, cream, sugared vanilla bean as garnish.
Inventor: Ken Maciejewski, bar manager
The Lowdown: "We wanted drinks that were festive for the holiday season without being cheesy," Maciejewski said. "These are approachable cocktails that could interest anyone. And they're definitely for adults. Two of them, the Gingerbread Martini and the Charleston Cosmopolitan, were featured in the December issue of Southern Living magazine."
Price Tags: $9 each for the Charleston Cosmo and the Gingerbread Martini; $8 for the Woodford Cocktail.
How Long They'll Be Around: The Charleston Cosmo and the Woodford through the winter, and the Gingerbread Martini until January
15 Magnolia Road, 769-0228,http://voodootikibar.com
The Cocktail: Apple Pie Martini
Ingredients: Apple pie- infused vodka, whipped cream vodka
The Cocktail: Peppermint Patty Martini
Ingredients: Candy cane-infused vodka, creme de cocoa, candy cane shavings
Inventor: Caroline Adams, bar manager
The Lowdown: "It all started two years ago when I made a pumpkin-infused vodka for Thanksgiving," Adams said. "People loved it! So I kept on going with the holiday-themed infusions and creations. I just made the candy cane vodka for the first time."
Price Tags: $9 each
How Long They'll Be Around: Through January
2037 Sam Rittenberg Blvd., 766-6331, www.zenasianrestaurant.com
The Cocktail: German Chocolate Cake Martini
Ingredients: Coconut rum, Frangelico, Hiram Walker Creme de Cocoa, a splash of cream
The Cocktail: Strazberry Truffle
Ingredients: Strawberry creme, ChocoVine Raspberry, a splash of cream, fresh strawberry
The Cocktail: Mint Chip
Ingredients: Hiram Walker Dark Creme de Cocoa, Hiram Walker Creme de Menthe, vanilla vodka, a splash of cream
Inventor: James Jiang, general manager
The Lowdown: "My idea was that people usually want dessert after dinner -- something sweet on their palate -- but they usually are too full for cake or pastry. So I designed these as 'dessert' martinis," Jiang said. "You can order these as a flight, or as a single drink -- full size or mini."
Price Tags: $7 for single martini, $10 for a flight, $4 for mini-version of single martini
How long They'll Be Around: "They're so popular, I don't plan to take the flight option away, but we'll change the drinks with the seasons," Jiang said. "These flavors will last through the winter."
Special Holiday Hours: Open until 11 p.m. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.