One of the largest components of Tahoe's nightlife is the mix of countless breweries, bars and restaurants that offer unique drinks difficult to find outside the basin. In our Drink of the Week segment, we'll showcase one type of beer, wine, cocktail — you name it — to try around the basin.

Reason No. 1 to drop everything you're doing right now and head to Edgewood Tahoe's Lodge: It's a freakin' winter wonderland there. Gigantic Christmas tree, twinkly lights, garlands, poinsettias, roaring fires, candles everywhere, and, most importantly, floor-to-ceiling windows showcasing the snow-capped mountains and lake.

Reason No. 2: The Ginger Smash.

The Bistro at Edgewood Tahoe just launched its new winter cocktail menu, and it does not disappoint. For a festive pre-dinner cocktail, opt for the Ginger Smash, a well-balanced tipple made with muddled fresh cranberries, ginger root, simply syrup, lemon, Empress 1908 Gin and apple cider.

The cocktail is garnished with more fresh cranberries and a healthy slice of lemon peel.

"It's a great starter cocktail," said Cari Schmitt, Bistro restaurant manager. "The Empress (1908) Gin is more of a botanic style gin, not a juniper style. It's fragrant and light, and the cranberries make it festive."

The floral gin plays well with the tartness of the cranberries and lemon, the sweetness of the simple syrup and apple cider, and the spicy quality of the ginger root.

The $13 cocktail is best enjoyed in front of the fireplace looking out at the snow with Christmas music playing. Trust us.