During what seems like the two (non-consecutive) weeks of winter in South Florida, there’s nothing like sitting outside on a cool, crisp evening with no clouds in the sky to look up at the stars and stay warm with a hot drink. South Florida has a great restaurant industry and it’s extremely beneficial to consult one of its best to find how to make different items at home that are found in restaurants. Ezra Pattek, consulting mixologist at the Meat Market’s Miami and Palm Beach restaurants, has had a career spanning 20 years across the nation at some of the best bars (Harry Denton’s Starlight Room, San Francisco). He is part of the Bon Vivants team – a nationally recognized, cocktail and spirit consulting company – and is a graduate of the advanced mixology and spirits expertise certification program, Pernod Ricard BarSmarts. Depending on the company, whether with a loved one, a significant other or one’s children, Mr. Pattek has supplied the following recipes. Creating the drinks is half the fun with the other half being drinking them. Each drink evokes memories of goodwill, forgiveness, home and hearth.

Ezra Patteck
The Bon Vivants

Spiced Apple Chai


  • 3 oz. spiced apple cider (unfiltered)
  • 1 oz. hot Chai tea
  • 1/2 oz. honey syrup
  • 1/4 oz. lemon juice
  • star anise, orange peel (for garnish)

Combine all of the ingredients, except for the tea, in a coffee mug or glass. Then add the hot chai tea and garnish with the star anise or orange peel.

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Caliente Buttered Rum

Ingredients for mixture (yield: about 12 drinks)

  • 1 stick of butter, unsalted
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 oz. Ancho Reyes Chile Liquor (taste: sweet, acidity, hint of spices, moderate heat)
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 1 pinch ground cloves
  • 1 pinch sea salt

In a bowl, combine all of the ingredients together to form into a dough-like consistency. Refrigerate until firm or ready to use.

Cocktail ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons of above mixture
  • 3 oz. of aged rum (maker’s choice: Flor De Cana, Bacardi, etc)
  • Boiling water

Spoon mixture into mug or coffee glass. Add rum and top off with boiling water. Serve with spoon for mixing along with cinnamon stick.

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Eric L Labrador is a freelance writer covering all things Miami. His work can be found on Examiner.com.