The holidays are here, and it’s time to put up the lights, pull out the scarves and play those nostalgic tunes. But if eggnog and ugly sweater parties are feeling a bit overdone, here are 15 merry cocktails to pair perfectly with those holiday jingles – which you’ll hear across SiriusXM’s Holiday Programming.
As a kid, you stayed up as late as possible, hoping to catch Santa. Now, as an adult, you’re the one dressing up as Santa, waiting for those kids to crash. Treat yourself to the Chimney Swept Up in the Moment, by TasteArtNYC owner Warren Hode, who has created a special green holiday drink with a kitschy kiss garnish.
2 oz. Crystal Head Vodka
2 muddled Cucumber Coins
1 oz. Lime Juice
1 oz. Aromatic Pine and Cinnamon Agave
Muddle cucumbers, add one pinch of salt. Combine all other ingredients in the bottom of the shaker. Shake vigorously and double strain in a martini glass. Zest lime on top, garnish with fire engine red lipstick mark.
The midnight hues of the classic Aviation cocktail match perfectly with the Destiny’s Child rendition of the classic song, Silent Night. The cocktail, created by mixologist Hugo Ensslin in 1911, draws its name from the sky. Home Bar Girl serves her Aviation in a gold-rimmed coupe, reflecting the color of the stars in the sky.
2 oz. Makar Glasgow Gin
2 tsp. Luxardo Maraschino Cherry Liqueur
1 tsp. Crème de Violette
1/2 oz. Lemon Juice
In a tin, combine ingredients and shake over ice. Place Maraschino cherry in coupe, double strain liquids into coupe.
In 1942, when Bing Crosby sang White Christmas in the Hollywood classic film, Holiday Inn, he created a permanent tune that captures the hopes and dreams for snowfall on Christmas Day. For places where snow is not happening, enjoy this Brancamenta-based snow cone recipe.
1 oz. Brancamenta
1 oz. Very Old Barton
1/4 oz. Letherbee Besk
1/4 oz. Dem syrup
1/4 oz. Water
Build this in big batches for ease of preparation. Add all ingredients to the batch and let sit with mint leaves in the refrigerator over night. After 24 hours, strain off the liquid and keep chilled. Measure your cocktail and pour over shaved ice. Garnish with a fresh mint sprig.
Inspired by Elvis’ famed banana and PJ sandwich, mixologist Travis Joiner created a drink with enough banana and blue fit for The King. The passion juice reflects Elvis’ joie de vivre, while the ginger and coconut flakes denote the holiday season. As for the blues, the blueberries add a perfect touch of color, flavor, and texture.
1 ¾ oz. Wicked Dolphin Coconut Florida Rum
3 oz. Passion Fruit Juice
1 oz. Blueberry
Lemon and Ginger Shrub
Squeeze of Lemon
Garnish with Soaked Coconut Flakes
All ingredients go into the tin with ice. Shake and strain into martini or similar glass. For the garnish, soak the coconut flakes in banana liquor and rim the glass with them. Then, wrap a lemon twist around a sugarcane stick. Toss in a few floating blueberries.
Hot chestnuts roasting, cold Jack Frost nipping. These temperatures denote the spirit of the holidays with a few svelte phrases. In his Jack Frost Nip cocktail, Dave Purcell draws his inspiration from the interplay of hot and cold in holiday songs. The Templeton and Frangelico have toasted nuts flavors that are perfectly balanced with the minty cool of Brancamenta.
3/4 oz. Templeton Rye
3/4 oz. Brancamenta
3/4 oz. Heavy Cream
1/2 oz. honey syrup
1/4 oz. Frangelico
1/2 oz. Espresso
1 Egg Yolk
Combine all ingredients into tin. Dry shake to emulsify egg yolk and cream. Add ice and shake vigorously. Strain and pour into Irish coffee glass. Top with shaved dark chocolate.
Happy Holiday is a song that brings that swing into holiday parties. While eggnog is the go-to for most wintertime celebrations, Peter Vestinos’ Swingin’ into the Holiday cocktail serves up an egg with a whole lot more pizzazz. As host or hostess, set the festive tone by greeting your guests with a stocking in one hand and a cocktail in the other.
(Yield: 4 Cocktails)
8 oz. Templeton Rye
3 oz. Lemon Juice
3 Mulling Spice Syrup*
2 Egg Whites
2 cups of Crushed Ice
2 oz. Dry Sparkling Wine
Pour the rye, lemon juice, mulling spice syrup, egg whites and crushed ice into a blender. Blend on medium speed for 10 seconds. Strain into cocktail coupes. Top with sparkling wine. Dust with grated nutmeg
*Mulling Spice Syrup
In a Sauce Pan add 2 cups water and 2 tablespoons Mulling Spices. Bring to a boil, then let simmer for 5 minutes. Add two cups sugar and stir to dissolve. Turn off head. Let sit for 10 minutes. Strain and Cool.
Hearing Christmas Time is Here by the Vince Guaraldi Trio brings on a feeling of nostalgia. Sounds, sights and smells of childhood return with this tune, along with the desire for a cup of hot cocoa while looking out at the following snow. A simple splash of Vanilla Stoli quickly makes it an adult memory.
1 1/2 oz. Stoli Vanilla
5 oz. Hot Chocolate
Crushed Star Anise
Pour Stoli Vanilla into a cup of hot chocolate. Top with whipped cream.
Two clichés found in almost every romantic holiday movie: kissing under mistletoes and Mariah Carey’s All I Want for Christmas is You. This mistletoe-inspired mojito by Grand Marnier uses mint leaves and cranberries as garnish, creating an edible mistletoe. Perhaps meeting over this drink will bring two lovebirds together.
2 oz. Grand Marnier Raspberry Peach
1 oz. Lemon Juice
1/2 oz. 100% Cranberry Juice
1/2 oz. Simple Syrup
4 Fresh Mint Leaves
4 Fresh Cranberries
Lightly muddle fresh mint and add all ingredients. Shake and double strain into a coupe glass with a garnish of fresh mint and a speared fresh cranberry.
Originally sung by Bobby Helms in 1957, Jingle Bell Rock continues to be played and covered every season. Hall & Oates love it so much, they covered it twice, back in the ’80s and again in the 2000s. Add some jingle and rock to any cocktail with these cute DIY bell straws by The Proper Blog.
Jingle bells in various sizes
Tiny plastic snowflakes
Hot glue gun
Glue bells and tiny plastic snowflakes to the straws.
Gloria Estefan’s version of Let It Snow! adds a warmth that makes you think the snow won’t be coming anytime soon. ‘Till then, enjoy this sweet, snow-inspired Martini.
2 oz. Cathead Pecan Vodka
1/2 oz. Frangelico
1/3 oz. Agave
Confection Sugar Rim
Rim a chilled martini glass with the confection sugar. In a shaker tin, combine the wet ingredients with ice and shake 20 times. Strain into glass.
Not all Christmas songs are cheery. But if you didn’t speak English, you would think that the upbeat sounds of Wham!’s Last Christmas was a happy song. The best consolation for a broken heart is a new love. Or a cocktail. Jacob Tschetter’s Holiday Heartbreaker picks up on the song’s bittersweet lyrics, expertly blending Teeling’s Single Grain Whiskey and a Brooklyn based cherry vermouth. “Sweet upfront which leads into sour stone fruit notes and trails off with a lingering bittersweet aftertaste.”
2 oz. Teeling single grain
1/2 oz. Uncouth Cherry Vermouth
1/2 oz. Lemon
1/4 oz. Honey
1/2 oz. Brovo Boomerang
Put all ingredients into a cocktail shaker, strain into a coupe glass.
One of the top Christmas songs since it came out in 1970, José Feliciano’s Feliz Navidad brings holiday cheer with its tropical rhythm and bilingual beats. A perfect match to this warm song is the traditional Ponche Navideño. Made in various parts of Latin America, this Ponche recipe by Muy Bueno Cookbook is served hot, hot, hot, hot.
4 quarts Water
2 Cinnamon Sticks
8 Whole Cloves
5 Long Tamarind Pods (husk removed, and seeded or boil the entire pod to make removing easier)
½ lb. Tejocotes
6 Large Guavas (peeled and cut into large bite-size chunks)
2 Red Apples (peeled, cored, and cut into small bite-size chunks)
1 Pear (peeled, cored, and cut into small bite-size chunks)
2 (4-inch) Sugarcane Sticks (peeled and cut into small chunks)
1 cup Pitted Prunes
1/2 cup Dark Raisins
1 sliced Orange
1 cup Dark Brown Sugar
1 oz. Brandy
In a large pot, over high heat, boil water, cinnamon sticks, cloves, tamarind and tejocotes. After it starts to boil, lower the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes until the tejocotes are soft. Remove the tejocotes from the heat, peel, remove hard ends, cut in half and deseed. Return them to the pot. Add guavas, apples, pears, sugar cane, prunes, orange slices and piloncillo. Simmer for at least 30 minutes, stirring gently. Discard cinnamon sticks and cloves. Ladle into cups, making sure each cup gets some chunks of fruit. Add brandy or tequila to each cup (optional).
New Orleanian Meagan Burke knows a thing or two about how to cool off, as down in Louisiana the winters ain’t too chilly. Anyone who is familiar with Willie Nelson’s Frosty the Snowman knows that Frosty has to stay cold to keep from melting in the warm weather. This white, refreshing, spiked milkshake for two is perfect for old buddies catching up around the holidays.
(Yield: 2 milkshakes)
½ cup White Chocolate Chips
½ cup Whole Milk
2 cups Vanilla Ice Cream
3 oz. Brancamenta
Hot Fudge Sauce
Whipped cream, for garnish
Sprinkles, for garnish
Blend together the white chocolate chips and milk. Add the ice cream and Brancamenta and blend to combine. Add more ice cream if you want a thicker shake or more milk if you want it thinner. Pour some fudge sauce in the bottom of two glasses and divide the milkshake into the glasses. Garnish with whipped cream and sprinkles.
Baby, It’s Cold Outside, is a classic country duet about a gentleman trying to convince a lady to stay inside with him because it’s so dreadfully cold outside. Entice your guests to your indoor party with this festive hot toddy made with rum, cinnamon, and cider.
1 1/2 oz. Bacardi Oakheart Spiced Rum
5 oz. Hot Apple Cider
1/2 oz. Cinnamon Syrup
Pour all together in a cup. Garnish with a cinnamon stick and Star Anise.
Finally, there’s a holiday song that rejoices in travelling to the warmer places of the world for Christmas vacation. Kenny Chesney sings about tropical shores, putting his feet in the sand, and “singing Silent Night with the Palm trees blowing.” The flavors of Four Roses Bourbon pick up on the country notes of the song, while the fruits and herbs of this cocktail reflect its island feel.
2 oz. Four Roses Bourbon
2 oz. Pineapple Juice
3/4 oz. Orange Juice
1 tsp. Whole Pink Peppercorns
5 Cilantro Leaves
2 oz. Ginger Beer
Add bourbon, pineapple, orange, peppercorns and cilantro to shaker. Shake vigorously with ice. Double strain over fresh ice. Top with 2 ounces of ginger beer.
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