Some things you can always count on: red lipstick for a mood boost, Motorhead to bring the party, and hilarious dog videos to perk up the workday (I’m partial to the My Talking Pet app). With its concentrated fruit flavor, plentiful spice, and rich, velvety texture, Peachy Canyon’s 2011 Westside Zinfandel has joined that list. Can’t find the rare 2011 vintage? Try the iconic winery’s 2013 offering, which is just as refined and approachable. I say, let El Niño do its stormy thing. I’ll be sipping Peachy Canyon zinfandel, the closest thing you can get to Paso Robles sunshine in a bottle.
• Peachy Canyon 2011 Westside Zinfandel—About $22; 1480 N. Bethel Road, Templeton.
Let the rain soothe our parched soils just as this smooth cocoa soothes life’s little trials and tribulations. Stress is no match for this lightly vanilla-scented treat, made with 70 percent fair trade, organic bittersweet chocolate and cocoa from the Dominican Republic. Simply mix two rounded tablespoons (that means heaping!) with 8 ounces of milk or almond milk and heat to 140 degrees. Add marshmallows, a crackling fire, and a really good book for an extra dose of winter joy.
• Mama Ganache’s Classic Cocoa— $16 for a 12 ounce bag; 1491 Monterey St., SLO.
Hayley Thomas is looking for organic marshmallows. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.