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Solar Box by Akio Kamei

Especially because the days are getting shorter as those of us in the northern hemisphere move closer to the winter solstice, it’s nice to see the sun. Here’s a brief glimpse of that erstwhile ray of brightness in our lives, shortened thanks to the Earth’s axis. Anyway that’s my excuse this week and I’m sticking to it. Akio Kamei’s Solar Box is a fiendish little star masquerading as an octagonal puzzle box with curving rays of frustration encircling the main compartment. At least master Kamei mentions in his description that it’s “not easy” to open. I certainly felt a little burnt by the time I mastered its gravitational pull. I almost went blind staring into it for so long. The Solar Box is a beautiful creation and twinkles like the star it is thanks to the lovely zelkova wood. One final word of caution though, you’ll need to have some Serious Puzzle Fortitude to solve this – I’d recommend SPF 50.

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The Sun by Joe Schofield

This puzzle box star needs something equally bright to sip while solving. The Sun, by Joe Schofield from The Tippling Club in Singapore, provides just the right amount of bright, warming holiday cheer. Singapore isn't a cold, snowy wonderland this time of year – its nice and sunny. So in Singapore, this cocktail is actually a winter holiday drink! A seasonal mix of white rum, tart lemon, and rich honey syrup start this nuclear fusion going nicely. Add a few photons of the gentian-based Peychauds bitters (which are out of this world) and ignite with a gamma ray of liquid heat – the original calls for Tabasco and I used Habanero Hellfire bitters, which can light quite a fire in your mouth. Shake it all up while humming “Here comes the Sun” and sip responsibly, or you’ll be seeing stars. Cheers!

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A bright, sunny and winter cocktail with a hint of heat

The Sun

1 ¾ oz white rum
¾ oz fresh lemon
½ oz rich honey syrup (3:1 ratio)
3 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
1 dash Tabasco

Shake ingredients together over ice and strain into a favorite glass. Garnish with a sunny lemon wheel.

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Let the sunshine in ...


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