Issue 27 | December 2022
Who doesn’t love the holidays? Food, fun, families, and free time– what could be better? Seasonal songs are playing on the radio and lively lights are twinkling along the streets – what could make for a more perfect evening? How about a festive holiday drink to warm you up and brighten up your evening even a little bit more! Whether you’re looking for a hot cocoa or cappuccino or a cool cocktail that will heat you up in a different way, here are some of the most festive holiday drinks across Hudson County.
Festive Holiday Drinks to Warm You Up This Holiday Season
Who said that holiday drinks had to be warm or topped with whipped cream? At The Vanguard in Harrison, not only will you find an extensive menu ranging from loaded nachos and butternut squash soup to veggie burgers and NY strip steaks, but you’ll also find one of the most extensive holiday drink menus on this side of the Hudson. Heat up the night (and your belly) with a Sippin’ Santa, made with aged rum and holiday flavors like nutmeg and cinnamon syrup or go with Santa’s Sleigh, a gin-based cocktail with cranberry-sage syrup. More of a tequila person? Well, the Parrot in a Pear Tree (clever, we know!) is a tequila-based wonder that’s flavored with pear liqueur, parrot mix, and apple brandy.
1316 Washington St, Hoboken, NJ 07030
What originally opened its doors as the Madison Hotel in the 1950s is now The Madison Bar & Grill, known for serving some of the best food and drinks in the city for the past three decades. This place really does have something for everyone, as they have a separate vegan menu, serve a decadent weekend brunch, and a they’re known for their mouth-watering collection of cocktails. Try the Pumpkin Old Fashioned (made with bourbon, pumpkin, and maple syrup), the Adam’s Apple (an apple and cinnamon-flavored whiskey cocktail), or the Mezcal Montenegro (mezcal with fresh winter grapefruit and cinnamon). Feeling extra classic? Well, you can’t go wrong with their tried and true Hot Toddy, which you may even be able to score with a pumpkin twist.
For holiday cheer with an Irish twist, you can always count on Carpe Diem in Hoboken. Come autumn and wintertime, their well-stocked cellar of beers, wines, and spirits transforms into creative and craveable concoctions that will wet just about any whistle. Two of their best are the salted caramel espresso martini (need we say more?) and the winter spritz, which is a Proseco and Aperol-based cocktail livened up with winter flavors like grapefruit, rosemary, and pomegranate. For something hot and homey, go with the boozy hot chocolate, which improves upon the kiddie classic by adding in vanilla vodka, Kahlua, house made hot chocolate, and whip cream.
335 Newark Ave, Jersey City, NJ 07302
Known for their hand-crafted cocktails and “devilishly delicious” Asian and American fusion shared plates, Cellar 335 is one of the best places to grab food and drinks year-round. Come wintertime, however; this tiki bar meets funky basement hangout takes their drink menu to the next level, making it the perfect place to celebrate the holidays. Check out their extensive Sleighs n’ Leis menu that’s full of fruity, floral, and festive cocktails that are served in embellished glasses and chunky mugs shaped like Santa Claus, reindeer, elves, and snowmen. Before you take a sip, you may even want to snap a pic for social media, as these lovely libations are probably some of the prettiest drinks you’ve ever seen, made even more photo-worthy by the restaurant’s festive décor. Don’t forget to tag @visithudsonnj.
Few things scream Christmas more than eggnog and at JC’s artisanal market, The Cottage, you’ll find this traditional creamy beverage transformed into a smooth and creamy eggnog latte. If you’re one of those people that just can’t get behind eggnog (which, we don’t really understand but we know those people do exist), do yourself a favor and get the turmeric ginger chai, a rich and spicy winter chai that also boasts ingredients that can help boost immunity. Their desserts and pastries change daily but you’re sure to find a flaky croissant, a sweet (but not too sweet) donut, or a fruity Danish that will pair perfectly with your holiday drink.
Natas & Bowls
534B Kearny Ave, Kearny, NJ 07032
Tucked inside a tiny storefront along Kearny’s main drag is Portuguese perfection: warm, rich, and creamy nata (Portugal’s famous custard tarts) that pair perfectly with hot and heavenly coffee. For something strong, try the espresso but if you’re in the mood for smooth and creamy, you can’t go wrong with the cappuccino. The nata tarts come in four flavors: original, pumpkin, Oreo, and Nutella so do yourself a favor and order an extra box to go (perhaps with an extra sweet cup of hot cocoa) so you can treat yourself, or a loved one, when you get home.