With the winter holidays quickly approaching, it’s time to get your bar or restaurant into the festive spirit. Whether you’re warming up customers who visit your bar after a long day of shoveling snow or you’re preparing tasty beverages for your ugly sweater party, these 12 drinks of Christmas are sure to keep the holidays, and your guests, buzzing. Check out our recipes below as well as our favorite seasonal drink syrups and add ins.
1. Caramel Apple Cider Hot Toddy
The key to this amazing hot toddy cocktail is the caramel vodka. We got this on a whim, but it really makes this drink perfect. This Caramel Apple Cider Hot Toddy is warm, cozy, and delicious. It’s just so good!
- Apple Cider
- Caramel Vodka
- Bourbon (optional but highly recommended!)
- Cinnamon Sticks
- Whipped Cream (to top it off)
- Combine apple cider, vodka, bourbon, and cinnamon sticks in a pot.
- Heat on the stove top and let it simmer until hot.
- Pour into heat-proof mugs or glasses and top with whipped cream!
- We used cool whip to top it off, but real whipped cream would be just as good (if not better). I prefer this drink served hot, but it would also be good served chilled, or even frozen into a slush! This recipe makes about 12 glasses, but you can easily double the recipe if you have guests over, or if you are throwing a holiday party.
2. Cranberry Apple Sangria
It’s the perfect spiced cocktail with fresh cranberries, apples, oranges, rosemary, cinnamon, star anise and whole cloves. And you can make this ahead of time and let it chill right in the fridge. When ready to serve, pop open that bottle of wine and pour over ice.
- 700 ml cranberry apple juice cocktail, divided
- 32 gr cup sugar
- 2 oranges, thinly sliced
- 62.5 gr halved fresh cranberries
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 3 star anise pods
- 8 whole cloves
- 250 gr sliced small apples
- 750 ml bottle pinot grigio, chilled
- Combine 500 ml cranberry apple juice and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring until the sugar has dissolved, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat.
- Stir in oranges, cranberries, rosemary, cinnamon sticks, star anise and cloves. Let stand 30 minutes; remove and discard rosemary and cloves.
- In a large pitcher, whisk together orange mixture, apples and remaining 250 ml cranberry apple juice.
- Let chill in refrigerator for at least 4 hours.
- Serve over ice with pinot grigio.
A delicious mix of vodka, St. Germain (elderflower liquor), and fresh squeezed winter citrus juice. All mixed together and topped with bubbly ginger beer and extra festive pomegranates.
- 60 ml vodka
- 15 ml St. Germain (elderflower liquor)
- 80 ml fresh squeezed clementine or blood orange juice
- ginger beer, for topping
- pomegranate arils, for topping
- 1 sprig fresh thyme or mint
- Fill a cocktail glass with ice. Add the vodka, elderflower liquor (if using), and clementine juice. Top with ginger beer. Add the pomegranates and thyme or mint. Enjoy!
Who doesn’t love the taste of smooth, comforting and creamy buttered rum?! This is an easy cocktail recipe I’ve been making for years during the holidays and cold winter months.
- 10 gr unsalted butter, melted
- 15 gr brown sugar
- 10 gr powdered sugar
- 45 ml dark rum
- Pinch of ground cinnamon
- Pinch of ground nutmeg
- 250 ml whole milk, heated
- In a coffee mug, stir butter, brown sugar and powdered sugar until combined.
- Add hot milk, rum, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir well to combine. Garnish with cinnamon stick and/or star anise.
Our favorite kind of Christmas cocktail? One that tastes as good as it looks. This one fits the bill with subdued reds, a bit of green from fresh thyme sprigs, and a pretty paper straw to match.
For the Cranberry Syrup:
- 66 gr cranberries
- 96 gr granulated sugar
- 177 ml water
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
For the Cocktail:
- 60 ml gin
- 177 ml Cranberry Syrup (see below)
- 177 ml fresh lemon juice
- 15 ml elderflower liquor
- Club soda
- Fresh cranberries, to garnish
- 2 sprig fresh thyme, to garnish
- Make the Cranberry Syrup: Simmer cranberries, granulated sugar, and water in a small saucepan over medium heat until sugar dissolves and cranberries break down, 10 to 12 minutes. Stir in 4 sprigs fresh thyme. Cool to room temperature. Strain; discard solids.
- Make the Cocktail: Combine gin, Cranberry Syrup, fresh lemon juice, elderflower liquor, and ice in a cocktail shaker. Shake until chilled; strain into 2 glasses. Top with ice and club soda. Garnish each drink with fresh cranberries and 1 sprig fresh thyme.
No winter wonderland is complete without a cup of eggnog! Here, we’ve taken the classic recipe and upgraded it—without losing the taste you’ve grown to love and expect.
- 250 ml heavy cream
- 10 mll pure vanilla extract
- 2 cinnamon sticks, broken
- 1 gr freshly grated nutmeg, plus more for serving
- 1 litre whole milk, divided
- 8 large eggs, separated
- 156 gr granulated sugar
- Pinch of kosher salt
- 176-237 ml dark rum, bourbon, or cognac
- Combine heavy cream, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and 500 ml milk in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat until tiny bubbles begin to appear around the edge of the pot (do not let it boil), 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let steep 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, beat egg yolks with an electric mixer on medium speed until combined. Gradually beat in sugar and salt. Increase speed to high and beat until thick and very pale in color, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Strain spiced cream mixture, discarding solids; return liquid to pot. Slowly beat 250 ml warm cream mixture into yolk mixture on low speed. Return to pot with cream mixture. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a rubber spatula, until mixture coats the back of the spatula, 9 to 10 minutes.
- Place the pot over a large bowl filled with ice water and let cool, stirring occasionally, until chilled, 20 to 30 minutes. Stir in rum, bourbon, or cognac and remaining 500 ml milk.
- Just before serving, beat egg whites with an electric mixer until soft peaks form, 1 to 2 minutes; fold into eggnog. Serve topped with grated nutmeg.
- 3 shots bourbon
- 1 and a half shots fresh lemon juice
- 3/4 shot dark amber maple syrup
- 1 large sprig of rosemary (plus 2 small sprigs for garnish)
- Crush the large sprig of rosemary in your hand and add to the shaker.
- Add the bourbon, lemon juice, maple syrup, and ice to above the level of the liquid and shake vigorously for 15 seconds.
- Strain mixture into rocks glasses with ice and garnish with remaining rosemary sprig.
Upgrading the classic Moscow Mule to this Spicy Pomegranate Moscow Mule. Vodka mixed with fresh lime juice, a squeeze of grapefruit juice, pomegranate juice, spicy jalapeños, and topped off with ginger beer…for a touch of sweetness and a little bit of bubbly! It’s both festive and warming, perfect for holiday parties and cold winter nights.
- 60 ml vodka
- juice from 1/2 lime juice
- juice from 1/4 of a small grapefruit, plus grapefruit slices for serving
- 80 ml pomegranate juice
- 1-2 jalapeño slices
- ginger beer, for topping
- pomegranate arils, and fresh mint, for serving
- Fill a cocktail glass with ice.
- Combine the vodka, lime juice, grapefruit juice, pomegranate juice, and jalapeños in a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice and shake until combined, about 1 minute. Strain into your prepared glass. Top with ginger beer and garnish as desired. Enjoy!
- 4 gingersnap cookies, crumbled
- 5 gr honey
- 177 ml coffee liqueur (such as Kahlúa)
- 168 ml vodka
- 6 gr pumpkin pie spice
- 177 ml heavy cream
- Place crumbled cookies on a plate. Rub rims of 4 glasses with honey. Dip in cookie crumbs to coat.
- Whisk together coffee liqueur, vodka, and pumpkin pie spice in a measuring cup. Pour in to prepared glasses, dividing evenly; top with ice. Divide 177 ml heavy cream evenly among glasses and serve immediately.
- 700 ml prosecco, chilled
- 237 ml limoncello liqueur, chilled
- 200 gr frozen raspberries
- 6 sprigs fresh mint
- In a large pitcher, whisk together prosecco and limoncello.
- Serve over raspberries, garnished with mint, if desired.
Ingredients: For the Orange-Thyme Old-Fashioned
- 60 ml bourbon
- 15 ml Orange-Thyme Simple Syrup
- 1 dash Angostura bitters
For the Orange-Thyme Simple Syrup
- 4 strips orange zest
- 3 sprigs thyme
- 200 gr sugar
- 237 ml water
- Make the Old-Fashioned: Place bourbon, Orange-Thyme Simple Syrup (recipe below), and Angostura bitters in a cocktail shaker; top with ice. Shake vigorously until shaker is cold, 10 to 20 seconds. Strain into a glass with a large ice cube. Serve with a strip of orange zest and a thyme sprig.
- Make the simple syrup: Combine 4 strips orange zest, 3 sprigs thyme, and 200 gr each sugar and water in a small saucepan. Simmer until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and cool; strain.
- 3 fresh raspberries
- ice cubes
- 30 ml heavy cream
- 30 ml chambord
- 30 ml vodka
- Muddle raspberries in the bottom of a glass. Add ice. Pour cream, Chambord, and vodka over ice. Stir well to combine.