How to Prep Your Bar Cart for Winter

Jesse Willis, co-owner of Vine Arts, shares the bottles to stock for fireside sipping when the weather gets chilly.

A Classic Red
Clos Bellane Côtes du Rhône Villages Valréas ($31)

Photograph courtesy of Vine Arts.

“My go-to wine for the winter is a classic Côtes du Rhône. The style is like a warm hug on a cold day with supple texture, warm fruit notes and savoury spice; they’re great for pairing with heartier dishes or just sipping around the fire. One of my favourites is the Clos Bellane Côtes du Rhône Villages Valréas — it offers considerable depth and complexity for the price point.”


A Light and Fresh Amaro
Cardamaro ($42)

Photograph courtesy of Vine Arts.

“Cardamaro is a great ‘gateway’ amaro that is lighter and fresher than many on the market. It’s made with a combination of 24 herbs and botanicals, and a base of Muscat wine. I enjoy it on the rocks with a twist of lemon before or after a meal, and it’s a good substitute for sweet vermouth in a classic Negroni or Manhattan.”


An Easy-sipping Cognac
Château de Montifaud VS ($59)

Photograph courtesy of Vine Arts.

“When I’m looking for a spirit to sip slowly on a chilly Calgary evening, I often find myself reaching for cognac. The Château de Montifaud VS is a great option for a brighter, fresher cognac that plays well in cocktails, or, if you’re looking to splurge, the Château de Montifaud XO ($123) is incredibly smooth and delicious.”


A Cocktail Enhancer
Proof Old Fashioned Syrup ($18)

Photograph courtesy of Vine Arts.

“If you’re in the mood for a winter cocktail and want to make your life easy, I recommend this syrup from the team at Proof Cocktail Bar. The combination of brown sugar, orange peel and bitters create a velvety syrup that is ready to rock. Simply combine it with Bourbon or rye whisky in a glass with ice, stir and enjoy!”

Two Calgary locations,

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This article appears in the October 2022 issue of Avenue Calgary.

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