10 Hot Holiday Cocktails to Savor All Season
You may have the most perfectly-placed Elf on the Shelf to keep your kids on guard, but how are you shaking up things for yourself this holiday season?
READ: Hot Cocktails for Cold Winter Nights
Sure, you could treat yourself to a massive mug of hot cocoa by the fireplace, or even a glass of mulled wine if you're looking for something with more of a kick, but even that Elf on a Shelf will be hiding away from those typical, boring concoctions.
Because the weather outside is frightful, and the idea of a piping-hot cocktail sounds so delightful, we decided to ask several renowned mixologists for their favorite wintry drink recipes. From tantalizing toddies to to richer, more syrupy libations, each of the following festive cocktails will have you celebrating all the way up until December 31st.
READ: 11 Champagne Cocktails to Sip While Watching the Ball Drop
Just make sure to hide all your booze from that Elf on the Shelf. We hear he's on the naughty list this year:
3 cups milk
.75 circle of Chocolate Abuelita (or any powdered chocolate of your choosing)
6 oz. añejo tequila (Mixologist used Patrón Añejo)
2 oz. coffee liqueur (Mixologist used Patrón XO Café Incendio)
Freshly grated cinnamon
Heat milk and powdered chocolate in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Mix continuously with wire whisk until mixture is frothy and starts to simmer. Remove from heat and add tequila and coffee liqueur to taste. Pour into a warmed mug. Top with whipped cream and freshly grated cinnamon. Serves 4.
(Created by Damian Windsor of Power House in Los Angeles)
El Batido por Nochebuena
1.5 oz. añejo tequila (Mixologist used Patrón Añejo)
1 oz. spiced cream syrup*
.5 oz lemon juice
1 egg white
1 whole vanilla bean or cinnamon stick
*For Spiced Cream Syrup
14 oz. sweetened condensed milk
21 oz. water
8 whole cloves
.5 tsp. vanilla extract
2 whole cloves of star anise
In a saucepan, combine the ingredients for the spiced cream syrup and reduce for 15 minutes over low heat, stirring continuously. Let cool and fine strain to remove all solids.
Next, fill a cocktail shaker with ice, and add the tequila, 1 oz. of the spiced cream syrup, lemon juice and egg white. Shake vigorously. Open the shaker and scoop out the ice, then strain the cocktail back into the small tin. Dry shake (without ice) for about 10 more seconds. Strain into a chilled coupe glass.
Garnish with grated nutmeg and a whole vanilla bean or cinnamon stick.
(Created by Jaren Rivas at The Westin Hotel in Miami)
2 large eggs
3 oz. superfine sugar
2 oz. añejo tequila (Mixologist used Patrón Añejo)
2 oz. coffee liqueur (Mixologist used Patrón XO Café)
6 oz. whole milk
4 oz heavy cream
2 dashes Mexican Mole Bitters
Beat eggs in blender on medium speed. Slowly add sugar and blend for one additional minute. With blender still running, add nutmeg, both spirits, milk, cream and bitters, and blend until combined. Chill thoroughly (approx. 1 hour) to allow flavors to combine and texture to develop.
Serve in a chilled coupe glass, and garnish by grating additional nutmeg on top immediately before serving. Serves 3–4
(Created by Danielle Lewis of GT Fish & Oyster in Chicago)
.5 oz. Campari
.5 oz. bourbon (Mixologist used Wild Turkey 101 Bourbon)
1 oz. sweet vermouth
.75 oz. cinnamon syrup*
1 orange slice
*For Cinnamon Syrup
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup water
4 cinnamon sticks, broken into pieces
Begin by making the cinnamon syrup. Bring the sugar, water and cinnamon sticks to a boil over medium high heat. Then, reduce heat to medium-low and let simmer for 8–10 minutes, or until sugar has completely dissolved, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and let cool. Discard cinnamon sticks and strain into a glass jar. (This syrup can be stored in fridge for up to two weeks.)
Next, build the cocktail ingredients in a warm 8.5 oz. mug and top with boiling water.
Garnish with an orange slice.
(Created by Erick Castro at Soda & Swine in San Diego)
1 part Jägermeister
1 part 5-year-old rum
1 part cachaca (Mixologist used Amburana Cachaca)
1 part heavy cream
Add all ingredients (except grated nutmeg) in a cocktail shaker. Dry shake (no ice) for five seconds. Add ice and shake vigorously for five more seconds. Strain in a chilled coupe glass and garnish with freshly grated nutmeg.
(Created by Drexler's in New York City)
.5 oz Jagermeister
1 oz. rye whiskey (mixologist used Whistle Pig Rye)
1 oz. rum (mixologist used Atlantico Reserva Rum)
.25 oz. grappa (mixologist used Montanaro Grappa di Arneis)
.5 oz pistachio orgeat*
Freshly grated nutmeg
*For Pistachio Orgeat
2 cups raw pistachios, shells removed
1.25 cups water
1.5 cups sugar
To make the pistachio orgeat, pulse the pistachios in a food processor until finely ground. Meanwhile, add water and sugar to a pot and place over medium heat. Stir until sugar dissolves completely. Boil the syrup for three minutes before slowly adding the ground pistachios. Turn heat down and let it simmer for an additional three minutes. Increase the heat to medium high and, just right before boiling, remove the syrup from heat and cover with lid. Let mixture infuse overnight, then strain, discarding the ground pistachios. (Orgeat can be stored in fridge for up to two weeks.)
When it comes time to make the cocktail, add the first five ingredients into a cocktail shaker and dry shake (without ice) until frothy. Pour mixture into coffee mug. Top with hot water from the kettle, followed by freshly grated nutmeg.
(Created by Chaim Dauermann, Head Bartender of Up & Up in New York City. Photo by Matt Piacentini.)
1.5 oz. reposado tequila (Mixologist used Patron Reposado)
1.5 oz. cold press coffee — standard iced coffee works well as an alternative
.75 oz gingerbread syrup*
.25 tsp. chocolate bitters (mixologist used Scrappy’s Chocolate Bitters)
1 gingerbread cookie
*For Gingerbread Syrup
1.5 cups water
1.5 cups granulated sugar
1 Tbsp. ground ginger
1.5 tsp. ground cinnamon
.5 tsp. ground nutmeg
.25 tsp. ground cloves
.25 tsp. sea salt
2 tsps. pure vanilla extract
Combine all ingredients for the gingerbread syrup — except vanilla — in saucepan. Heat ingredients on medium heat until sugar is dissolved, and the mixture achieves a syrupy consistency. Turn off heat and stir in the vanilla. Let cool, and store in a refrigerated mason jar until ready to mix the cocktail.
When ready to mix, add the tequila, coffee, syrup and bitters to a cocktail shaker and shake with ice to chill. Strain through a fine mesh strainer into a chilled coupe glass.
Layer the top with whipped cream and a gingerbread cookie.
(Created by Benny Amin at Fig and Olive in Los Angeles)
G & Tea
1 Tbsp. earl grey tea
1 Tbsp. rooibos tea
1 Tbsp. chai tea
Half of 1 orange (cut into slices)
12 oz. hot water
4 oz. apple cider
2 oz. lemon juice
2 oz. amaro liqueur (mixologist used Meletti Amaro)
4 oz. cinnamon syrup*
6 oz. gin (Mixologist used NOLET’S Silver Gin)
Freshly grated nutmeg
*For Cinnamon Syrup
2 cups water
5-6 cinnamon sticks
1.5 cups sugar
In a saucepan, combine two cups water with 5–6 cinnamon sticks. Place over high heat until boiling, and let boil for about 10 minutes. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved. Remove from heat, strain, and store in the refrigerator.
When ready to make the cocktail, combine all three teas along with the orange in a pitcher. Add 12 oz. of hot water and let the tea and orange brew/infuse for half an hour.
In a separate container, combine the apple cider, lemon, amaro and cinnamon syrup and set aside.
When the tea has finished brewing, strain out the orange and combine with the cider and cinnamon mixture.
If serving this cocktail cold, add the gin, pour into serving vessels, and garnish with fresh grated nutmeg. If serving warm, heat all ingredients over low heat until the desired temperature is reached, then add gin and pour into serving vessels. In either case, garnish with fresh grated nutmeg. Serves 2–3 people.
(Created by Tim Wells at Revival Social Club in Chicago.)
1 part Scotch (Mixologist used Macallan 10 Year Old)
2 parts apple cider
.25 part maple syrup
.25 part Lemon juice
dash of allspice
Pour all ingredients — except hot water and apple slices — into a mug. Top with hot water and stir. Garnish with apple slices.
(Created by Stephanie Karvellas at Cedar Lakes Estate in New York)
Red Hot Chocolate
3 oz. whole milk
.5 oz. heavy cream (optional)
2 Tbsps. dark chocolate chips
1 oz. Campari
2 oz. brandy
Heat milk in a saucepan until nearly boiling.
Pour milk, along with the cream and chocolate in a mug. Stir vigorously until chocolate is completely melted.
Add Campari and brandy.
Garnish with whipped cream and peppermint stick.
(Created by John Ginnetti at 116 Crown in New Haven, CT)