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Highballs with Hawleywood: Apple Brandy Hot Toddy


Whether it’s warming you up on a chilly October day, livening up your family’s Thanksgiving get-together, or even curing your autumn cold (results may vary), the apple brandy hot toddy is a five-tool cocktail. While it is meant to be served for a large group—ideal for the fall holidays—you’ll be thankful for its easy recipe should your Turkey Day be for only one.


1.5 oz (45 ml) water

1 tsp honey

0.5 oz (15 ml) lemon juice

2 oz (60 ml) apple brandy


Boil water in a kettle or saucepan and pour 1.5 oz into a rocks glass containing a cinnamon stick. Stir in the honey until dissolved, then add lemon juice, apple brandy, and stir. Garnish with orange slice. 

For eight servings: Use 1.5 cups of water, 2.5 tablespoons of honey, half cup of lemon juice, and 2 cups of apple brandy. 

The result is a warm and crisp apple taste balanced with sweetness (honey) and a touch of spice (cinnamon). Calvados is the apple brandy of choice and costs $40 for 700 ml at the LCBO.


After dinner to help digest that turkey. Then again, before works too. Or whenever that “fun” uncle begins to nod off.

Pints with Ponyboy

Escaping Ottawa for a few days during reading week is no excuse for belittling your taste in beer. To help you avoid situations like my family’s historic Thanksgiving fiasco of 2012, in which my parents’ fridge had nothing to offer except Coors Light and Steam Whistle, here are some solid seasonal beers— all can be found at any LCBO location—that are sure to satisfy beer snobs and amateurs alike.

Night Märzen Oktoberfest Lager
by Beau’s

A hoppy, spicy beer that may be better left for those already initiated into the hops movement. Its rich colour and flavour, followed by its bitter after tones, mirrors the season of fall—as vibrant beginnings are eventually replaced by the bitter cold of November. But it’s not all doom and gloom. After a few sips, this beer loses its harsher edge and becomes quite enjoyable, much like that out-of-touch grandparent at the dinner table.

Le Saison Du Tracteur
by Le Trou Du Diable

I’ve never lived on a farm. Nor have I any conception of what tractor season is like. But if either of those things is as enjoyable as this strong farmer’s ale, than I’ve been missing out. This beer is just plain awesome. It’s made with passion fruit and grapefruit juices, both of which help create a sweet, unique, and strong flavour that’s way better than anything else I’ve tasted from a Canadian brewery in the past few months. I can’t imagine this will stay on shelves long, so delay at your own risk.

Highballer Pumpkin Ale
by Grand River Brewing

Exceptionally smooth and sweet, and made with real pumpkin juice, this beer is the perfect liquid substitute for a soothing slice of pumpkin pie. While probably the best option for casual beer drinkers wanting to try something new, this beer shouldn’t be dismissed as a mere novelty—it’s very good. Just don’t have this one immediately after a pumpkin spiced latte—the results can be quite seedy.

Van Dyk’s Vineyards


For some reason, wine is not the often the drink of choice for the student demographic, but it should be.

Firstly, it’s good for you. Multiple studies have shown that three to seven glasses of red wine a week can regulate your blood sugar, therefore helping you maintain a healthy weight and decrease your risk of depression.

Studies have also shown wine to be beneficial for your heart, as well as packed to the cork with antioxidants. Resveratrol, which is found in the skin of grapes, may help ward off diabetes, prostate cancer, and the common cold.

Secondly, it’s delicious.

Also, the assumption that wine should be consumed within 48 hours to prevent oxidation is proving to be less true, as more expensive and high-end wineries are starting to box their wine. Boxed wine allows drinkers to preserve their wine for up to six weeks, making it much more economical for students.

Here are some red, white, and sparkling wine recommendations to get you started.


White House Riesling Pinot Grigio
Floral and citrus flavours, dry and medium bodied, a perfect white for new winos.
$12.95 at the LCBO

Linden Bay Pinot Grigio 

Tropical fruit and pear flavours, hints of citrus. Light bodied.

$7.90 at the LCBO.


Jackson-Triggs Merlot 

Fruity and herbal. Medium bodied, dry.

$15.95 for a double-sized bottle at the LCBO.

Yellowtail Cabernet Sauvignon 

Rich fruity and oaky taste, with strong notes of currant and spice.

$11.95 at the LCBO.


Provincia Di Pavia Moscato

Great for celebrating on the cheap.

$13 at the LCBO.