As you can imagine, the holiday season is filled with libations of all types. Enough that I’m separating our annual cocktail round-up into two batches this year. Below, you’ll find a variety of mixology delights to ring in the holidays. But remember to enjoy responsibly and if need be, either stay over with friends or use a designated driver. If you’re lit brighter than the Christmas lights, you don’t need to be on the road!
3 parts Purity Vodka
1 part cucumber water*
Dash simple syrup
1/2 part pastis (or absinthe)
Cucumber for garnish
Add pastis to a tumbler and roll around. Shake out any excess. Add ice and combine other ingredients. Decorate with long-cut slice of cucumber. For extra spice, add a dried chili fruit.
*Cucumber water: Slice organic cucumber. Combine with water in container and refrigerate. Strain into another container and keep chilled.
The Cucumber Gimlet
2 parts Purity Vodka
3/4 part fresh lime juice
3/4 part simple syrup
4 slices cucumber
Add all ingredients into cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well and double strain into large cocktail glass. Garnish with lime wheel.
Elevated Vodka Martini
3 Parts Purity Vodka
1 Part Spring Water
Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice and stir until ice cold. Strain into a chilled Martini glass.
6 ounces vodka
1 dash dry vermouth
Lemon Lime Sparkling Ice Splash
Lemon twist, for garnish
In a mixing glass, combine vodka and dry vermouth. Strain into a chilled martini glass and top with Lemon Lime Sparkling Ice. Garnish with a orange twist and serve.
1 tablespoon passion fruit juice
4 ounces Ginger Lime Sparkling Ice
Rosemary sprig, for serving
Passion fruit pulp, for garnish
In an ice filled low ball glass add the vodka, passion fruit juice, Ginger Lime Sparkling Ice and stir. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary and a spoonful of passion fruit pulp and serve.
1.5 ounces Monkey 47 Gin
1/2 ounce apple brandy
1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
1/2 ounce grenadine
1/4-1/2 ounce pasteurized egg white
Add all ingredients into cocktail shaker, seal your shaker and shake vigorously for 5 seconds. Then add ice and shake again for another 5 seconds. Fine strain into a cocktail class and garnish with a brandied cherry.
Harvest Vesper Bell
1.5 ounce Monkey 47
3/4 ounce Absolut Elyx
3/4 ounce Lillet Rouge
Add all ingredients to a mixing glass, add a large scoop of ice, stir for 7 seconds, strain into a rocks glass over fresh ice and garnish with an orange twist studded with cloves and a star anise.
Fig Honey Rosemary Thyme Smash
6 fresh figs, diced or 1 tablespoon fig preserves
1 small, ripe red plum, diced
2 ounces Elderflower liquor
1 lemon, juiced
2-4 tablespoons honey, depending on your taste
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, plus more for garnish
Le Grand Courtâge Brut Rosé, for topping
Add the figs, plums, elderflower liquor, lemon juice, honey, and thyme to a cocktail shaker. Using a muddler, gently push the figs down until they release their juices and are lightly smashed. Add ice. Place the top on the shaker and shake vigorously. Strain into 2-3 glasses.
Top each glass with Brut Rosé. Garnish with figs and fresh thyme.
The Gingerbread Man
1-1/2 ounces vodka
1/4 ounces ginger syrup
1/4 ounces fresh lime
1/4 ounces pomegranate juice
4 fresh cherries (plus more for garnish)
2 ounces ginger beer
Mint spring for garnish
Combine lime, ginger, pomegranate, and cherries. Muddle down to a paste. Add vodka and shake. Double strain into a copper mug with 2 oz. ginger beer in the bottom. Garnish with fresh cherries and mint sprig. Used shaved ice on top for effect.
From One Club
Not So Old Fashioned
2 ounces anejo tequila
Dash orange bitters
Dash angostura bitters
Orange peel for garnish
In a separate glass, muddle the agave, orange bitters, angostura, and cherry. Add tequila and ice, then stir. Strain over fresh ice into a rocks glass. Garnish with orange peel.
From The Sticks at The Inn at Spanish Bay
1-1/4 ounces Absolut® vodka
3/4 ounce Godiva® White Chocolate liqueur
1 ounce Pumpkin Spice Syrup (recipe below)
1 navel orange wedge, skin on (about 1/8 of a medium-sized orange)
1 dash pumpkin spice
Add vodka, white chocolate liqueur and pumpkin spice syrup to a shaker. Fill 3/4 with ice. Squeeze the orange wedge and add the juice to the shaker. Add the wedge to the shaker as well. Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled martini glass. Dust with a dash of pumpkin spice.
Pumpkin Spice Syrup (roughly 12-ounce yield)
1 cup granulated white sugar
1 cup hot water
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
Combine sugar and hot water in a small saucepan. Stir. Cook on medium/low heat until sugar has been dissolved, stirring occasionally until the mixture appears clear. Remove from heat and add the tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice. Whisk to incorporate. It’s okay if the spices clump a bit. Allow the mixture of spice and syrup to cool to room temperature. Once cooled, strain the spices from the mix by using a strainer lined with a coffee filter to help capture the smaller particles. (Getting most of the spices out is good enough—a little spice sediment won’t hurt the syrup.) Chill for use. Store this syrup in the fridge—it should stay good for two weeks or more.
From Eleven Waters
1-1/2 ounces Patron Anejo tequila
1/2 ounce dry vermouth
4 ounces pineapple juice
Maraschino cherries for garnish
In a high ball glass filled with ice, add the tequila, followed by the vermouth and pineapple juice. Garnish with a maraschino cherry or two and serve.
Sparkling Holiday Punch
8 ounces Chambord Liqueur
8 ounces Cranberry Juice
2 chilled bottles Korbel Brut
Pour ingredients into a large punch bowl or pitcher and stir. Top with raspberries or cranberries.
Festive Peppermint Fizz
1 ounce White Crème de Cacao
4 ounces Korbel California Brut
White Chocolate, melted
Peppermint candy cane, crushed
Dip the rim of a champagne flute in melted white chocolate, then dip in finely crushed candy cane. Pour crème de cacao into a champagne flute. Top with Korbel.
Herbarium Holiday Pitcher
4 ounces Finlandia Vodka
4 ounces Lime Juice
2 ounces Simple Syrup
12 ounces Soda
1 Pinch Salt
Fresh Herbs (coriander, mint, basil, sage, rosemary)
Build the ingredients into a pitcher. Stir. Garnish and serve.
1 ounce Finlandia Classic Vodka
2 ounces Cranberry Juice
3 ounces Korbel Brut
Shake vodka and cranberry juice in a shaker with ice. Strain into a chilled champagne flute and top with Korbel. Garnish with cranberries.
1 Bottle (11.2 ounces) of Smirnoff Ice Screwdriver
2 ounces Cranberry juice
Pour Smirnoff Ice Screwdriver into a high ball glass and slowly pour cranberry juice on top as a floater.
Cranberry Lime Vodka Mojito
1 can (12 ounces) Smirnoff Spiked Sparkling Seltzer Cranberry Lime
1 ounce Smirnoff No. 21 Vodka
0.5 ounces Simple Syrup
3 ounces Cranberry juice
Fresh mint leaves
First, muddle mint and lime wedge into the bottom of a high ball glass. Then, add simple syrup followed by ice. Next, pour in cranberry juice and top off with Smirnoff Spiked Sparkling Seltzer Cranberry Lime. Finally, Garnish with fresh lime wedges, cranberries and mint leaves.
1.5 ounces tequila
0.75 ounces ruby red grapefruit juice
Juice from 1/2 lime
0.5 ounce mulled wine syrup
2 dashes rosemary grapefruit peppercorn bitters
Top with champagne
Rosemary sprig garnish
Combine all ingredients (except champagne) over ice, shake, and strain. Add champagne and garnish with sprig of rosemary.
The Green Virgin
3/4 ounce egg white
2 ounces Tanqueray gin
1/2 ounce Chartreuse yellow liqueur
1 ounce lemon juice
1 ounce Rosemary Syrup
1/2 ounce olive extra virgin oil
4 dashes Peychaud’s bitters
Add egg white and gin in a Boston shaker and shake 5-6 times. Add in liqueur, lemon juice, rosemary syrup, and olive oil, then fill shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and strain in to a cocktail glass. Garnish with bitters and Rosemary sprig.
Homemade Rosemary Syrup
Equal parts sugar and water
A rosemary sprig or two, depending on batch size
In a heavy bottom sauce pot, combine all ingredients turn on high heat, bring to a boil and let simmer for 5 minutes. Turn off heat allow to cool at room temperature. Allow rosemary to steep for 24 hours. Strain and serve in the Green Virgin cocktail.
The Season 1 Boulevardier
1 ounce Old Grandad Bonded
1 ounce Cocchi Rosa
1 ounce Amaro Meletti
2 dashes Bittercube Orange Bitters
Orange peel, expressed and discarded, for garnish
Add all ingredients to stirring vessel, then fill with ice. Stir with bar spoon until chilled. Strain into cocktail glass and add garnish.
4 ounces water
1 teaspoon demerara sugar
1-1/4 ounce Old Monk XXX Indian Rum
1/4 ounce lemon juice
2 Dashes Bittercube Blackstrap Bitters
Garnish with lemon slice and cinnamon zest
Combine water and demerara sugar. Heat in microwave until sugar dissolves (about 45 seconds). Add Old Monk XXX Indian Rum, a fresh squeeze of lemon juice, and 2 dashes of Bittercube Blackstrap Bitters. Give a few stirs, then garnish with lemon wheel and freshly grated cinnamon over the top.
Remember to enjoy responsibly!