It’s officially the holiday season, time to get into the spirits!
Ante up, Houston, it’s Christmas. In honor of the most wonderful time of the year, some of our favorite locals have decked their halls with lights, banners, and a stock-full of yuletide libations. Read on to discover the 10 most cheerful places in town to have an eggnog. [Featured image: @presentcompanyhtx]
Home to the wildly festive Miracle pop-up, the friendly Heights neighborhood bar brings over-the-top holiday cheer to Houston when the most wonderful time of the year comes around. This year’s libations are set to include: Yippie Ki Yay Mother F****r!, Christmas Carol Barrel, Jolly Koala, On Dasher, Snowball Old-Fashioned, Christmapolitan, and Jingle Balls Nog. For a short burst of the holiday spirit, patrons can also enjoy the Nice and Naughty Shots.
Follow the lights to Present Company HTX in Montrose to a glittering oasis of festive cocktails, decadent decor, and a merriment that would make the Grinch’s heart grow three times over. The vibrant patio bar serves an assortment of red and white wines, champagnes, and craft and domestic beers. Their seasonal cocktail menu features the new Santa’s on Acid, Angels with Filthy Souls, Santa’s Sauce, and Milk & Cookies – made with bourbon, ginger liqueur, peppermint schnapps, and vegan cookie dough syrup!
3. Grand Prize
Grand Prize is tucked in the east edge of Montrose north of Museum Park. Driving by, the bar first gives off the vibe of a low-key house party – what with the front porch, music, and the colorful array of lights twinkling in the front window and all. Yes, the celestial network of festive lights sparkle on both floors of the endearingly crust punk palace. It’s a solid hang any way you cut it – you don’t even need friend.
Opened recently in Midtown, Winnie’s is a vibrant new bar and patio that serves up tantalizing libations, an amazing array of sandwiches, oysters, and po-boys, as well as a trove of flights packed in treasure chests.
5. Lei Low
Known as the tiki bar that started a movement in Texas, Lei Low is an over-the-top Hawaiian haven tucked inside a strip center in The Heights. Now for the holidays, the tiki tinseltown is turning into something of an island winter wonderland. Seasonal cocktails include: the Frosty Bastard, Jamaican Polar Bear, Ol’ Saint Nip, Mai Ugly Holiday Tai, and more!
6. Night Shift
Hosting the Sippin Santa Mele Kalikimaka pop-up, Night Shift is housed inside a remodeled warehouse and auto parts store. Overseen by a collaboration of award-winning bartenders, as well as a seasoned executive chef, Night Shift is an excellent go-to destination to burn the midnight oil. Plus, with its expansive roof deck now open to sweeping Downtown views, you can’t miss it this holiday season! Featured cocktails include the eponymous Sippin’ Santa, made with aged Demerara rum, nutmeg syrup, lemon juice, amaro, cinnamon syrup, and orange juice; the Kaloka Colada, with dark Jamaican and Gold Puerto Rican rums, pumpkin spiced coconut cream, lime juice, orange juice, and orange Curaçao; and the hotly served Brah Humbug, made with scotch, mulled wine syrup, and Drambuie.
The third and final host of the festive Miracle pop-up this year is Daiquiri Time Out in Galveston. As the go-to island destination spot for daiquiri shots, DTO won’t have a problem mixing up its seasonal menu of cheerful cocktails that include the Christmapolitan, Snowball Old-Fashioned, and the Jingle Balls Nog.
When looking for a cozy place to warm up with a whiskey, seek refuge at Anvil bar. Billed as Houston’s first bar devoted to classic cocktails, Anvil Bar and Refuge on Westheimer has plenty of holiday spirits to go around – precisely 100, in fact. Plus, with enough holiday decor to bring a twinkle to an elf’s eye, Anvil makes a perfect place to warm up this holiday season.
9. Monkey’s Tail
Opened back in 2019, Monkey’s Tail in Lindale Park is primarily known as a craft cocktail bar and Tejano bar. The bar offers a daily changing margarita that varies day-to-day with past flavors that include the Fanta Orange Margarita. In addition to their tantalizing libations behind the bar, Monkey’s Tail offers creative and wonderful brunch options. For the holiday season, the bar is serving up a variety of wintry libations, including: Horchata Eggnog, the Mistletoe, and the Slay Ride made with grapefruit vodka, Big Red, ginger lime, and tiki spices.
10. Wonder Bar
Quoting their Facebook, Wonder Bar is “an interactive and imaginative bar that will feature unique installations.” In the same vein as The FOMO Factory, or the Color Factory, Wonder Bar in Houston features a variety of whimsical installations, but with the added bonus of snapping selfies over rounds of sweet colorful cocktails. For the holiday season, the bar has decked their halls with a quirky assortment of festive decor.