Some Like It Hot: Where to warm up in the South Sound

Have yourself a steamy winter

By Kim Thompson on January 15, 2014

There's a new vocabulary word in town, South Sounders, and it is surely to be on everyone's frozen and chapped lips this winter season:

brumous: (broo'mes) adjective, of gray skies and winter days; filled with heavy clouds or fog; relating to winter or cold sunless weather.

Sigh.

The only thing that's fun about brumous is saying it three times fast (brew-mis, brew-mis, brew-mis) or using it in a sentence or two:  "Ugh, more cursed brumous weather!  "It's January; I'm in a brumous mood today, so be nice to me and fetch me my sun lamp." 

Otherwise, brumous can kinda bite day after day after day, right locals?

Here's a little mini-guide to chase the bleepin' brumous blues away and warm us up a bit.

Sippy, sippy, toasty, toasty

OK, we all know the benefits of a cup of coffee, a steaming mug of tea and a sweet hot cocoa. We're drowning in the stuff right now. What we really need is a little "nip" in those hot libations or some other rad adult beverage that kicks up the hot and/or spicy a bunch of notches. Need some inspiration? Tacoma's Hilltop Kitchen (913 Martin Luther King Way), a dreamy neighborhood craft bar, serves up glorious and creative cocktails that will knock blumous on its arse.  A little hot cocoa with tequila? Sure! Even the drink names inspire warmth, such as "Hot Pants" (featured ingredient is ghost pepper) and "Under the Lord of Weather" (which'll knock the sniffles out the park and then some). Pair with some delish taco varieties and a little hot piping soup, and you'll be toasty in no time.

Burn your guts out

Yes, South Sounders, we have lots of amazing spicy food choices and cuisine options served up locally in a variety of restaurants to heat us up on these chilly and wintry days. But here's a little something that you may not know:  We've got a hometown-grown and based artisan hot sauce and seasonings company whose spicy recipes would do the devil himself proud. Heavenly Heat Gourmet Hot Sauces is sold locally and in multiple states throughout the nation. The eclectic and delicious sauce line boasts products for every palate  (those who want a little extra heat and those who desire to set their innards on fire). Our pick - the Meet Your Maker Retribution Sauce, which comes in its own teeny, tiny coffin. Smokin'!

Lemme stand next to your fire

Fireplaces are a winter staple. Besides a little heat, they feel cozy and look super cool. Even the "for looks only" fake fireplaces are still rad. What better than to gather around for brumous-busting conversation, enjoying a beverage and noshing on good eats or curling up with a good book? It can be done. Check out Tacoma's restaurant darling, Asado (2810 Sixth Ave.) with its sweet fire crackling, scents of succulent Argentinean smoked and spicy meats cooking over flame and restaurant patrons toasting and chatting away. Or have a little hot and spicy Tex-Mex adventure and some margs at the lively Matador (721 Pacific Ave.) in downtown Tacoma around the coveted circular indoor fire pit. But fireplaces aren't just for restaurants. The University Place Library (3609 Market Pl. W.) entrance hosts a big roaring fireplace with plenty of seating for reading and just chilling out. Sip on a hot and steaming beverage fireside at some local Forza Coffee Company shops, relax and watch the brumous weather float on by.

Steam up your brumous sex life (but keep those socks on)

Good sex equals good socks.

The verdict is in - wearing socks while having sex helps folks have better, er, uh, libidos. Don't believe us - a quick Google search is all it takes. See, we warned you. Besides, socks are needed in the winter months because the sheets are freezing anyway, right? Now, all you need is some killer socks. For some cuties, we like downtown Tacoma's Nine Lives Vintage Wears (754 Broadway), Tacoma and Olympia's Compass Rose  gift stores and Tacoma's Sonja's Clothing To Live In (2510 N. Proctor). For the sports inclined, check out South Sound Running or the University Bookstore of Tacoma (1754 Pacific Ave.).

Hawaiian punch brumous in the face!

Knock out a case of brumous with a little Hawaiian punch. Sure, you may be freezing your tookus off in your tacky Hawaiian shirt and hula skirt, but hey, defeating winter blahs takes sacrifice! Get a great start by gathering authentic Hawaiian gear and goodies at Tacoma's Aloha Oasis (3011 Sixth Ave.). This place is loaded with all things island like: aloha wear, tropical scented candles, island music and more. Get your goodies and then go get a taste of Hawaiian cuisine at L&L Barbeque in Lakewood or Federal Way or Pacific Island Grill (2012 S. 320th St.) in Federal Way. Now we need island music to really wash the brumous season away! Got a uke? Go to Tacoma's Ted Brown Music store for an all-ages uke jam session from 6:30 to 8 p.m. every Wednesday (6228 Tacoma Mall Blvd.). Beginners welcome! Hau‘oli Makahiki Hou (Happy New Year)!