Cheers, here’s to Christmas! For a delicious holiday drink you can quickly whip up, just mix the following ingredients, shake them up and let the party begin! We prefer cocktails that are not sweet, but if you prefer them more sugary, use regular cranberry juice instead of the unsweetened variety.
You can substitute cranberry vodka in place of blood orange vodka if necessary.
It’s not Autumn, and I’m not in New England, but this cocktail still works on a number of levels. While this may sound like a book or movie title, it’s actually an adult libation we found in our copy of America’s Test Kitchen’s book “How to Cocktail.” They point out that apple and sage are a pairing that taste as if they were always meant to be together, and that’s why this drink works. The piney, slightly astringent notes of the sage are mellowed by the bright sweetness of apples.
A couple of sage leaves are muddled in maple syrup to infuse with herbal flavor. Apple cider’s sweet, slightly fermented flavor adds even more depth, as does the smoky, caramelized bourbon. Keeping with the apple theme, a bit of cider vinegar with its bracing acidity adds another touch of savoriness to balance things out.
Need a new riff on a martini? Well, maybe the word “need” is a bit too strong, but why not imbibe in one of these sophisticated libations? This is a tasty twist on a Dry Martini but it has no vermouth, it uses sherry instead, so it isn’t really a Dry Martini after all… do you really care?
A classic 19th century tipple that originated at the Waldorf-Astoria Bar in upstate New York, it is bone dry and aromatic with green grape, citrus and mineral notes, and garnished with orange peel. Alternatively, you may consider dressing this cocktail with an olive, as one suits it.
An Elderflower Liqueur Cosmo and a White Cranberry Cosmo ran into each other at a bar, both spilling a bit into a third glass which exploded with Holiday Cheer—and a third Cosmo was born, a cross between the two adult libations.
I first saw the White Cranberry Cosmo on a Facebook posting and thought it’d be a great “house” drink for an upcoming Winter Cheer party. Problem was, it seemed everyone else had the same idea. Two weeks prior, thinking I’d be ahead of the game by picking up the white cranberry juice at the supermarket, they were completely out!
A few days later at a big box liquor store, there were endless flavors of vodka, I kid you not. We found jalapeño, pickle, peanut butter, caramel apple, dark roasted espresso and every possible red fruit: watermelon, strawberry, raspberry, cherry, pomegranate (which was going to be my fall back), but no cranberry.
Undeterred, I followed up with a staff worker, who after consulting with the manager, was able to locate a box on the highest shelf, attainable only with a large step ladder just for employees. That guy was persistent, but so was I. St. Germain’s Elderflower Liqueur was a much easier find.
Tasty and sophisticated, these babies are a great way to get the party started!