Drink It All In

At Third Rail, when you're drinking is just as important as what you're drinking

Hot toddies aren't the only cold-weather drink.

At Third Rail, which opened in Dogpatch a month ago, Range owner Phil West and Jeff Lyon, the restaurant's former bar manager, have put a "Seasonal" section on their cocktail list that is as wintry as San Francisco gets.

These aren't the elaborate, fruity drinks of five years ago garnished with a million leaves. They're cocktails with produce-market origins and enough twists (figuratively speaking, of course) to keep every sip interesting.

Take the Envy ($10), tinted the color of puréed kiwi: Lyon shades in the fruit's pretty aromas with the softly bitter bite of tonic water and plenty of herbaceousness courtesy of gin and fresh tarragon.

The bar on a winter's night

Lyon says he leans on West's cooking experience to come up with drinks. "I asked Phil what would pair with pomegranate, and he thought for a few seconds and told me white pepper and thyme." Hence, the vodka-based Sweet Thang ($10).

Our favorite may be the Harvest Moon ($10), silver tequila and lime given a subtle sweetness with puréed Asian pear and a bright absinthe anise note.

You have just a few months to try it before the season changes.