Mortar & Pestle, the Bay Area craft cocktail bars, are known for their globally inspired drinks that feature traditional Indian flavors. The Bangalore Old Fashioned is an Indian-inspired take on the classic Old Fashioned, made with an Indian rum blend, housemade garam masala syrup, and Bittercube’s Blackstrap and Jamaican #2 bitters. A staple in Indian cooking, garam masala is a mix of warm winter spices like cinnamon, cloves and cardamom. That makes this cocktail perfect for imbibing around the fireplace during the holidays.  

Bangalore Old Fashioned 
—¼ oz. garam masala syrup (recipe below)
—1 ½ oz. Amrut Old Port Indian Rum
—¼ oz. Plantation Overproof Rum
—1 dash Bittercube Jamaican #2 bitters
—1 dash Bittercube Blackstrap bitters

Garam Masala Syrup
—1 cup water
—1 cup sugar
—25 grams garam masala powder

Bring water to a simmer, remove from heat and add sugar and spices. Stir until sugar dissolves then let spices steep for 10 minutes. Strain through cheesecloth. Good for two weeks when refrigerated.

Directions
Measure all ingredients into a mixing glass. Gently stir until chilled. Strain into a short glass with ice. Garnish with lemon and orange peel.

Courtesy of Mortar & Pestle, San Jose and San Mateo

The festivities include retro dining and a forward-looking renovation of a historic hotel.

 

This cocktail was first poured in 2010 for the opening menu at the original Beauty & Essex restaurant and lounge on New York’s Lower East Side. Now it’s a staple at all three locations, including Las Vegas and Hollywood, where Beauty & Essex is a dramatic 10,000-square-foot two-level venue, with two full service bars, an outdoor terrace, courtyard spaces and a private dining room.

 

The desert is getting bubbly, thanks to a new partnership between La Quinta Resort & Club, A Waldorf Astoria Resort and Veuve Clicquot. Together, the two are creating an intoxicating oasis at the resort’s adults-only Plunge Pool. During the day, guests can relax poolside under umbrellas in Veuve’s signature color or rent a Clicquot-branded private cabana with bottle service. A roving champagne cart will be available for guests looking to enjoy an effervescent buzz under the warm desert sun.