Eight fabulously potent punch bowls

Eight fabulously potent punch bowls

Don’t let these temporarily balmy temperatures fool you—the holidays are fast approaching. Which means it’s time to indulge in two of the festive season’s major activities: drinking and sharing. There’s no better way to get into the spirit (ahem) than by dipping in to a boozy punch. Here are eight of the city’s most fabulous bowls that’ll turn any gathering into a celebration.

(Image: Caroline Aksich)
(Image: Caroline Aksich)

It can be hazardous cradling a piping-hot cup of mulled wine while busting out your best Forrest Gump moves, so the folks at Spin have put the holiday favourite on ice. To achieve that warm spicy taste, the bartenders leave a tea steeper filled with cloves, cinnamon, orange peel and star anise to infuse in water for a whole week. The brew is then mixed with a bottle of red wine, four ounces of Cointreau and a squeeze of lemon juice. $50. Serves four or more. 461 King St. W., 416-599-7746, toronto.wearespin.com, @SPIN_Toronto

 

(Image: Caroline Aksich)
(Image: Caroline Aksich)

Kanpai’s Cheating Communist is served cold tea–style from a hefty traditional Chinese teapot. The potent concoction is a blend of Tanaka Moonlight Shōchū (a rice-based liquor), Calvados, lemongrass syrup and lime juice. Calpico (an uncarbonated, milky Japanese soft drink) gives the brew its cloudy hue. Bird’s eye chili garnishes look pretty and give the mix a kick. $50. Serves four. 252 Carlton St., 416-968-6888, kanpaisnackbar.com, @KanpaiSnackBar

 

(Image: Caroline Aksich)
(Image: Caroline Aksich)

The word punch is borrowed from the Sanskrit word for five (पञ्च), referring to the five ingredients that were originally used to make it: alcohol (of course), sugar, lemon juice, tea and water. The Indian Street Food Company’s Royal Punch is served in bowls made of kansa metal (the same thing used to make cymbals) imported from Rajasthan. This fruit-filled bowl contains a blend of peach purée, pomegranate juice, vodka, apricot brandy and orange-spiced black tea. $29. Serves four to six. 1701 Bayview Ave., 416-322-3270, indianstreetfoodco.com, @IndianSFco

 

(Image: Caroline Aksich)
(Image: Caroline Aksich)

Patois’ Rum Punch brings the tropics to Dundas and Bathurst. Earl Grey–steeped rum is mixed with peach liqueur, pineapple juice and finished with orange juice, lemon juice and simple syrup. $52. Serves four. 794 Dundas St. W., 647-350-8999, patoistoronto.com, @patoistoronto

 

(Image: Caroline Aksich)
(Image: Caroline Aksich)

Parkdale’s Polynesian bar, Miss Thing’s, just might have the best glassware collection in Toronto. We’re particularly obsessed with this vintage Hollywood Regency–style bronze pineapple, which is used to serve the Ohana Tai. While the name is a reference to the ’90s sitcom Family Ties (“Ohana” is Hawaiian for “family”), the drink itself is a play on a mai tai. Two types of aged rum are blended with Cointreau, orgeat syrup, lime juice and orange blossom water. A few dashes of house-made bitters add some savoury depth. $48. Serves four. 1279 Queen St. W., 416-516-8677, missthings.com, @missthingsbar

 

(Image: Caroline Aksich)
(Image: Caroline Aksich)

More fabulous glassware has earned Miss Thing’s  double billing on this list. The Bad Girl, served in a scorpion-decked coupe, packs an appropriate sting with Wild Turkey, Cassis, cherry liqueur, jalapeño-peppercorn simple syrup and house-made root-beer bitters. $36. Serves three. 1279 Queen St. W., 416-516-8677, missthings.com, @missthingsbar

 

(Image: Caroline Aksich)
(Image: Caroline Aksich)

Eastside Social’s pretty-in-pink drink packs a serious, well, punch. It gets its rosy hue from grapefruit juice, but it’s the three types of hooch (Zubrowka Vodka, port, rum) that provide the kick. Chamomile syrup and nutmeg round it all out. $21. Serves two. 1008 Queen St. E., 416-461-5663, eastsidesocial.ca, @Eastside_Social

 

(Image: Caroline Aksich)
(Image: Caroline Aksich)

Frankie Solarik, BarChef’s co-owner and Toronto’s resident molecular mixologist, kept things relatively simple for this daiquiri remake. The lavender and pineapple punch is a combination of spiced rum, lavender-infused Maraschino liqueur, pineapple juice, lemon juice and house-made orgeat syrup (the recipe for which is in his book). $60. Serves four to six. 472 Queen St. W., 416-868-4800, barcheftoronto.com, @barcheftoronto