Friday, 21 December 2012 17:06

Top 5 Winter Beverages

Written by  Matt Simpson Siegel
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Sleeping Bear Hot Chocolate Sleeping Bear Hot Chocolate

Founders Imperial Stout
Cue Vader's Imperial March and storm to downtown Grand Rapids for the inevitable return of Founders Imperial Stout. This 10.5% ABV silky smooth stout is brewed in 10 varieties of malted barley and remains complex and rich. Available only from January until the end of February while it lasts, grab a cellar-temperature pint of this brew and curl up with your favorite snack bowl for a winter treat.
235 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids; foundersbrewing.com, (616) 776-1195

Café Toledo at Clara's on the River
Sport your tweeds, grab your New Yorker, drape your scarf accordingly and head over to Clara's on the River to sit in comfort while pretending you're an intellectual instead of some bum getting tanked on coffee drinks. Warm, sweet, caffeinated alcohol in moderation inside this former train station on a snowy afternoon might make the perfect coffee date or inner-winter alcoholic's delusions blossom. The classic Café Toledo is comprised of Bailey's Irish Cream and Kahlua Coffee Liqueur, chocolate, coffee, and whipped cream. After indulging in this simple, classy beverage, try the other nine variations.
44 McCamly St. N., Battle Creek; claras.com, (269) 963-0966

Regular Coffee
Nothing is worse than attempting to scrape the last scoop of coffee from an empty can on a wintry day with iced over roads. Instead, subscribe to The Regular Coffee Co. for a one-month supply tube of good ol' Regular Coffee. An offshoot of Rowster New American Coffee, The Regular Coffee Co. has dumped all frills for one-and-a-half-pound tube of whole bean coffee for $20, which covers taxes, shipping, and handling. And, no, they don't offer decaf.
632 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids; regularcoffee.com, (616) 682-7122

Sleeping Bear Hot Chocolate at Water Street Coffee Joint
(Pictured, top) The scenic block point where Water Street Coffee Joint perches in downtown Kalamazoo offers up one of the best spots to sit and sip a mug of hot chocolate. Ground dark chocolate is melted into milk with cinnamon and topped with whipped cream. You'll quickly discover any cavities. 315 E. Water St., Kalamazoo; waterstreetcoffeejoint.com, (269) 373-2840

Tea at Global Infusion
This colorful and eclectic Fair Trade marketplace offers handcrafted jewelry, décor, clothing and some of the best loose-leaf tea you can find in West Michigan. With more than 100 teas to choose from, you may saddle up and stay at the coffee and tea bar, sipping and steeping.143 Diamond Ave. SE, Grand Rapids; globalinfusion.net, (616) 776-9720

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