We’re beginning to drink a lot for Christmas …
Anyone else feel that the Holiday season is controlled chaos for most of December? Visitors, in-laws, malls, endless car trips, bad Christmas music on the radio, school pageants, social obligations … all add up to a pretty trying time of the year. It wasn’t always this way, and we here at Mr. Booze want to remind you to just slow down a little bit, pour yourself a fatty cocktail, put on some old sounds, plug in the tree, and tune the outside world out on occasion. Christmas and the holidays were once about what went on in the home. Time spent with family and close friends around the home-bar with a special cocktail and a little tree close by. Just because it’s 2012 out in the real world, doesn’t mean it can’t be 1960 in your living room or home-bar. We encourage you to take a page from our playbook and put on that cardigan, light that pipe, pop some snacks in the oven, put on some old music, invite a few close friends over, and mix a Christmas cocktail or two. Try not to over-think the holidays; your parents & grandparents didn’t. No phones, no lap-tops, no nonsense. For a few hours, once or twice this season, turn back the clock and relax with a drink and a little Sinatra. You’ll feel like Santa, I promise.
Spicy Sparkling Cider
I’m always buying Sparkling Cider for my kids over the holidays. While pouring the other day, I added a little to a Stone Fence cocktail and liked what I tasted. I decided to do some research and stumbled upon this drink which calls for it specifically. Two drinks later and the decision was made … this is a dynamite holiday cocktail which you and your chums will love over December. If you like apple, but also appreciate a potent tippler, you’ll love it.
Here we go –
- 1 oz spiced rum (Sailor Jerry worked for me)
- 3/4 oz dark rum (Myers if you have it)
- 4 oz sparkling apple cider
- 1 tsp brown sugar
Mix everything but cider in a shaker w/ ice till chilled. Pour ice and all into a tall rocks or double old fashioned that you’ve rimmed with lemon juice, then cinnamon/sugar. Top with the sparkling cider and add an apple slice.
Hot Gingered Pear & Wine Cider
Hot/warm drinks are kind of a pain in the neck to make, I know that. But it is Christmas, and depending on where you are, it can be cold outside. Here’s a simple to concoct winter warmer that will have your guests (or just you) buzzing with a toasty impression left. You’ll need to get the sled to the store and pick up a few ingredients, but it’ll be worth it, for this is an excellent winter fruit-based cocktail that will walk hand-in-hand with a sumptuous holiday supper as easily as it goes with cocktail weenies and mustard dipping sauce.
Here we go –
- 3 cups unsweetened pear nectar (Goya, Jumex, Looza … you can find this stuff in the juice section)
- 2 tblsp sugar
- 1 tblsp crushed, crystallized ginger (look in the baking aisle & mince when yo uget home)
- 1 tblsp lemon juice
- 1 cup dry white wine (Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, etc…)
Pour everything into a medium sauce or cooking pan and heat on low fire till hot (5 minutes or so). Pour/serve in mugs and garnish with a thin lemon or orange slice.
Ginger Snap Holiday Cocktail
We already have a Ginger Snap cocktail on site, but this one is different and is a holiday-specific drink. I tried it and loved it on a number of holiday levels. First off, it’s an eggnog cocktail, which is kind of fun and does provide another use for that opened carton in the fridge. Secondly, it uses my new favorite booze of the season, Jacquin’s Ginger Flavored Brandy, a delicious throwback-tasting liqueur that reminds me of Christmas in a bottle. Finally, this is a very easy cocktail to mix up and tastes like a yummy holiday dessert for grown-ups. Normally, I steer clear of the creamy sweet, but not during the holidays. I’ll pour one or two with my Nat Cole.
Here we go –
- 3/4 oz spiced rum
- 3/4 oz ginger brandy
- 4 oz eggnog
Blend above ingredients with a scoop of ice in a blender till creamy & cold. Pour into a festive short glass and sprinkle with ground ginger or cinnamon or nutmeg.
Rosy Cheeks Holiday Punch
Punches are definitely the way to go if throwing a party this holiday. We’ve pushed them before on site and will always try and throw one on site for the holidays. To be quite honest, I only just discovered this punch while perusing the pages of Mr. Heffner’s magazine while getting my December haircut. Created by bartender, restaurant-owner , Jim Meehan in inspired glory, I mixed up a smaller batch of this for a few whiskey lovers, and all gave it thumbs-up. It’s a playful Christmas punch which, while incorporating some pretty daring flavors in the mix, ties together very well with ice on the tongue. She’s a strong one, but shouldn’t a holiday punch be strong? A bowl of this on the table will save you a lot of trouble that December night. So delicious and festive, you won’t be mixing up many other drinks.
Here we go –
- 9 oz Irish whiskey (I used a pretty good one but didn’t break the bank, Meehan calls for Redbreast)
- 6 oz Plymouth Slow Gin
- 6 oz creme de cacao (Meehan calls for the hard to find, but available if you look, Tempus Fugit)
- 6 oz fresh lemon juice
- 1 bottle dry champagne
- 2 lemons sliced for garnish
Combine whiskey, gin, creme de cacao, and lemon juice in a pitcher and store in the fridge to chill. Right before your bash, pour chilled booze and lemon juice in a punch bowl and float a large chunk of ice (I freeze mine in a clean butter tub the night before) along with. As guests start spilling in, pour your champagne right into the mix, gently stir, then float your lemon slices on top. Have a stack of festive punch cups along side, a ladle in the soup, and you’re all set. A true modern classic, Mr. Meehan’s Rosy Cheeks Punch calls for a beautiful punch bowl if you can swing it.
Ginger Brandy Alexander
Yet another reason to add the warming flavor of ginger to your cocktails. This is simply a variation of the classic Brandy Alexander found on our site. With the addition of a ginger flavored brandy, this true classic is provided with a fun, Christmas kick-in-the-pants. I still love the classic Brandy Alexander, don’t get me wrong, but why not zing it over the holidays with an infusion of still classic, but delightfully different flavor.
Here we go –
- 2 oz cream
- 1 oz brandy
- 1 oz ginger brandy (I use the Jacquin’s)
- 2 oz creme de cacao (dark if you have it)
Shake everything w/ plenty of cracked ice in one of those pretty Christmas shakers you have for the occasion. Serve up or on the rocks. Dust with a sprinkle of powdered ginger or nutmeg.
Well, there you have it! The Mr. Booze 2012 Holiday Christmas Drink List is brought to you with the sound advice to slow down this season. Relax on a couple weekend nights during December, don’t forget the music, and enjoy yourself. Click on one of our earlier Holiday Drink Lists for even more ammo in your drink arsenal this season. Merry Christmas and a Happy & blessed New Year!