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We asked 11 Downtown Phoenix bars and restaurants to craft their best holiday drinks and compete against one another in our second annual Spirits of the Season holiday cocktail competition. Though the battle was tough, Downtowners have spoken and the results are in!
For the second year in a row, District American Kitchen and Wine Bar is taking home the coveted Most Spirited Cocktail award.
“This annual cocktail competition attracts people into the downtown area,” District mixologist Matt Tobey said. “And it allows us a chance to elevate the cocktail making experience by showing off our creative mixology skills.”
Perfected by Tobey, the Hog Nog is a dangerous combination of Schreiner’s Bacon-Infused Rogue Hazelnut Spice Rum, House-Made Cinnamon Eggnog, garnished with a piece of Candied Schreiner’s Bacon.
It was difficult to compete with bacon, but the three runners up are (in order): Santa-gria at Crescent Ballroom, Spiced Pumpkin Pie at The Duce and the Life and Limb at Blue Hound Kitchen and Cocktails.
Other participating restaurants include 1130 the Restaurant, Canyon Café, Hard Rock Café, Lustre Rooftop Garden, Portland’s Restaurant and Wine Bar, Province, Squid Ink Sushi and Tom’s Tavern.
For those who missed the voting deadline, there’s still a chance to try each spirited cocktail for yourself as each one will be available through New Year’s Eve. Find the full list of cocktails here.
And for the perfect evening out, enjoy the Hog Nog while you snack on favorite happy hour snacks like the District Mac N’ Cheese, Street Pork Machaca Sliders and Bacon Wrapped Yuma Dates all available for $4.
District was even kind enough to provide us with the recipe, so we can make our Hog Nog at home:
• 2 ounces Rogue hazelnut spice rum infused with Schreiner’s bacon*
• 4 ounces house-made cinnamon eggnog**
• 5-inch piece of candied Schreiner’s bacon
Preparation: Add rum and eggnog into an Irish coffee mug and either steam to serve hot or leave chilled. Garnish with candied bacon and pinch of cinnamon.
Bacon-Infused Hazelnut Spice Rum*
1. Cook off 11 pieces of thick cut bacon.
2. Combine bacon and 1 liter rum into sealed glass container for 4 hours.
3. Strain rum through cheese cloth three times and then once through a coffee filter to remove fat.
• 2 cup sugar
• 4 cups whole milk
• 12 eggs
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 1 teaspoon nutmeg
• 5 cups heavy whipping cream
• 1 cup dark rum
• 1 cup brandy
1. Pre-chill all ingredients for the best result.
2. Begin by combining sugar and milk over medium heat until it lightly simmers.
3. In a large bowl, beat the eggs together vigorously until very frothy.
4. Sprinkle nutmeg and vanilla into eggs while beating.
5. In another large bowl, beat the milk and cream vigorously until very frothy.
6. A little at a time, combine both mixing bowls together still beating.
7. Finally, beat in the rum and brandy.
8. Let set in fridge for 2 hours.