A seasonal cocktail from the pros at Dolce Vita Wine Shop.

Serves 4


Whether it’s coffee, tea or cocoa, we all have our favorite warm drinks for cold days, but perhaps it’s time to brighten up the bleak midwinter with new flavors. Be bold. Try a new take on your go-to beverage at these southwest metro restaurants.

The party season might be over, but that’s no reason to stop entertaining friends and family. This fabulous cocktail might even remind you of your island vacation. Here is one of my favorites, and I know you will love it, too.

The sidecar is a classic sour drink, made popular during the golden age of cocktails in the early 1900s. Our version uses top-quality brandy (Armagnac) as the base spirit, along with orange liqueur and lemon, plus a touch of sweetness.


So your Thanksgiving meal is over, and you’re too full for pie, but still craving a sweet dessert. How about a Brandy Alexander? Chocolaty, sweet, creamy and smooth, a Brandy Alexander is a perfect liquid dessert.

Brandy Alexander
Makes 1 serving

Every September, we look forward to watching the U.S. Open tennis championships. This year’s tournament runs from August 25 to September 8. Grey Goose Vodka has been a sponsor of the U.S. Open for the past seven years, and attendees go crazy for the Grey Goose Honey Deuce cocktail.

Savor the remaining days of summer with this refreshing mix of lime juice, gin, mint and ginger beer. A splash of St. Germaine Elderflower Liqueur adds extra character to this cocktail.

Summer Mule

With three vineyards and wineries, Waconia is becoming a destination for
local wine, but there’s more brewing in town. Schram Vineyards Winery &
Brewery (schramvineyards.com) started brewing small batches of beer and serving

The Perfect Margarita at Hoppers Bar & Grill in Waconia.

We’ve sought out the area’s best drink specials, giving you the skinny on where to go and what to order. Shake up your afternoon routine with a round of the southwest metro’s best happy hour cocktails.