When I was a child, I was often asked by my parents “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I responded with the usual answers such as a ballerina, teacher, news anchor and a cast member of "Saturday Night Live" (OK, that last answer is slightly atypical).

 

However, never in a million years did I imagine that the eventual reply would be “Bartender,” and I could not be any happier with the outcome.

 

A bartending career is one of the most interactive, enjoyable and rewarding professions that many people never consider. I spend my days and nights learning about an industry filled with rich history, engaging and meeting clientele from all walks of life, mixing and crafting unique creations and never have to sit at a desk in front of a computer for eight hours straight from Monday through Friday.

 

And now I have the opportunity to bring all of my knowledge to you. Welcome to Just The Sip, a weekly blog devoted to the world of imbibing, the hot (or rather cold) trends happening in bars and restaurants and drinking advice. From exploring the roots of classic cocktails to interviews with NYC’s favorite bartenders and keeping you up to date on the newest venues, I will be “pouring out” my insight and keep you up to date on what to order when you hit the town.

 

So what’s brewing here in the city? With the weather flip flopping between bitter cold nights and balmy days, it’s no surprise that many Gothamites are developing a case of the sniffles. The old remedy back in the 1700 and 1800’s was drinking a hot, alcoholic libation to ward away the impending ailment. While liquor may not be the best choice when fighting a cold, a warm beverage is a great option during this season. You can find some great hot drink options at various spots including the Cluny Spiked Cider at Café Cluny (284 West 12th St), the delicious Windward Toddy at 1534 (20 Prince St), and a classic Hot Toddy at Daddy-O (44 Bedford St.).

 

If you don’t feel like venturing outside of your cozy apartment, you can easily make one at home with this simple recipe:

Ingredients:

2 oz whiskey or bourbon

.25 oz fresh lemon juice

1 tbsp honey, 6-8 oz hot water or tea

1 cinnamon stick

1 lemon wedge

3 cloves

In a mug or snifter glass add water/tea, whiskey, lemon juice and honey. Stir until the honey dissolves, add in the cinnamon stick and garnish by piercing the lemon wedge with the cloves and also add it into the glass. Allow 2 minutes for the spices to blend, sip and enjoy.