Updated: Vacation! Restaurants taking winter sabbaticals

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'Tis the season to eat, drink and be merry, and many restaurants around town are packed on a nightly basis as a result. For that reason alone, you should probably make reservations before you head out to eat. But here's more incentive: A number of restaurants are gearing up to take winter sabbaticals or close for private parties.

Sweet Action Ice Cream, for instance, will take a hiatus during the entire month of January. "It's just our tradition to take January off," says Sam Kopicko, noting that it's not a particularly big month for ice cream, anyway. The shop also offers this advice via its Facebook page: "If you see a flavor you like, it'll probably be its final appearance of the year. Stock up, yo!"

Potager takes a break for the holidays every year, and this year is no exception. The temple of local fare -- and awesome cassoulet -- will be closed as soon as service ends on December 17, and it won't reopen until January 4.

Colt & Gray is taking a shorter break: It'll close after service on December 23 and reopen on December 28. But that December 23 service? "We're having a drink-the-bar-dry party," divulges Kevin Burke, head barman, which means that after about 9 p.m., the kitchen and bar will start offering ridiculous deals -- think $1 oysters and $3 drafts -- until everything is gone.

Update: we've also learned Fuel Cafe is closing after dinner service on December 23 and taking an extended break, remaining closed through New Year's Eve festivities and reopening on January 2. And My Brother's Bar will be closed from December 24 through January 1. So if you were looking for a holiday escape, you'll have to choose another watering hole.

And then there are the dozens of private-party closures that happen this time of year. We know for sure that Interstate Kitchen & Bar is hosting a private event on Friday, December 16, starting at 3 p.m., and it's smart to call ahead to others to ensure you're not setting yourself up for disappointment.

Most restaurants in town, by the way, are also closed on December 25, and several are closed January 1 as well.

Know of others? Tell us about them in the comments.

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