It's that time of year when the frost is on the ground, flurries of snow are in the air and sweaters are part of our daily uniform. Finding ways to be cozy in the winter months while having fun with friends is my jam.

You don't have to go far to find coziness and fun. Head to the Mississippi River Distilling Company, 303 N Cody Road, LeClaire to sample their spirits and custom-made cocktails.

Not only will you be able to enjoy the libations, soon you'll be able to gather with friends on the distillery's patio in heated cocktail castles. You'll still have to wait a bit; the cocktail castles aren't ready to reserve yet. Take a look.

MRDC/Facebook photo

Last year my friends and I reserved one of the former castles and had the best time. The distillery has upgraded the castles from last year. The new ones seem a bit sturdier. According to their social media page, they've retired last year's castles to gardens. Here's a picture from last year. 

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MDRC/Facebook photo

Last year's castles came equipped with tables, chairs, twinkling lights, a candle, and a heater. We brought our own blankets, but the castles were warm enough we never needed them. The night we reserved our castle we enjoyed a beautiful sunset and watched snowflakes fall on the roof.

Tami/Townsquare Media

Each castle is assigned a dedicated server. Ours was amazing. She anticipated our every need, never let our glasses get empty, and offered us a fantastic variety of specialty cocktails. I ended up taking home a few bottles of pre-made cocktails to enjoy later. 

Reserving a cocktail castle was easy. You click on a link to reserve in 90-minute increments. When our time was up we couldn't believe how fast the time flew by. We lucked out. The next reservation wasn't filled so we continued our night in the castle. We had a terrific time and I can't wait to enjoy castle cocktails again this year.

Here's just a preview of the special holiday cocktails you can enjoy now.

TYCOGA Vineyard & Winery

TYCOGA Vineyard & Winery in DeWitt, IA is allowing you to enjoy their patio during the winter months. Rent one of their heated igloos to enjoy their award-winning wine and wood-fired pizzas with your 7 closest wine friends.

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