Ya'll know I love a well-crafted cocktail and the holidays are the perfect time of year to try out a specialty drink. As you probably also know by now, I'm a big bourbon fan so my top 10 holiday cocktail list had to include seasonal versions of my two favorite bourbon cocktails, the Old Fashioned (Cranberry Bog) and the Manhattan (Miracle on 34th Street). You'll also find a few peppermint inspired drinks (White Christmas Martini, Chocolate Peppermint Martini, The Minty Noggin), a mulled bourbon dream (Pear-Bourbon Wassail), a spicy cider (Apple Pie ala Whiskey) and a few others than will make your holiday bash a smash!
White Christmas Martini
2 oz Vanilla Vodka
2 oz white chocolate liqueur
1 oz white crème de cacao
2 tbsp. heavy cream
Honey and coarse sanding sugar for rim
Pour the honey into a shallow dish and sugar in another dish.
Coat the rim in honey, then dip in sugar and set aside.
In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, add the vodka, white
chocolate liqueur, crème de cacao and half-and-half. Shake until chilled and strain into the sugar rimmed martini glass.
Chocolate Peppermint Martini
3 oz Peppermint Twist Vodka
2 oz Crème de Cacao
1 oz chocolate liquor
Combine Peppermint Twist Vodka, Crème de Cacao, and
chocolate liquor into shaker cup and shake. Strain
Into martini glass. Garnish with mini candy cane.
The Minty Noggin
1.5 oz Peppermint Twist Vodka
3 oz Eggnogg
Crushed Peppermint Candy
Stir Peppermint Twist Vodka into a glass of eggnog.
Garnish with whipped cream and crushed candy.
4 cups pear juice
4 thin slices ginger
2 cinnamon sticks
4 star anise pods
1 cup bourbon
pinch of salt
Over high heat, bring all ingredients to a boil.
Reduce heat to low; let simmer for 5 minutes.
Strain. Add 1 cup bourbon, stir.
Keep warm over low heat or transfer to a slow
Cooker. Garnish with cinnamon sticks.
3 oz bourbon whiskey
1 oz cranberry simple syrup (see recipe below)
3 drops Angostura bitters
Garnish with orange peel, fresh cranberries, and rosemary
In a serving glass with ice, stir together the bourbon, cranberry syrup,
and bitters. Garnish with fruit and rosemary.
Cranberry Simple Syrup – In a saucepan, bring 2 cups of water, 1 cup of sugar, and one cup of fresh cranberries to a boil. Once boiling, cook for 4-5 minutes. Strain with a fine mesh sieve. Cool before using.
Holly Jolly Punch
2-3 cups fresh or frozen cranberries, plus more for serving
3 clementines, thinly sliced
8 cups cranberry juice cocktail
2 cups gin
½ cup fresh clementine juice
1 bottle sparkling white wine
In a bundt pan, scatter cranberries and clementine slices.
Top with water and freeze.
In a punch bowl, combine cranberry juice, gin and clementine juice. Add frozen ice ring, plus additional cranberries.
Top with sparkling wine and serve.
Red Ribbon Cosmotini
1 cup vodka
½ cup Cointreau or other orange liqueur
½ cup 100% cherry juice
¼ cup 100% cranberry juice
¼ cup pulp-free orange juice, freshly squeezed if possible
Pour all ingredients into an ice-filled cocktail shaker.
Shake until chilled.
Strain into martini glass. Garnish with a skewer of fresh cranberries.
Winter Bourbon Smash
2 Tbsp preserves or jam of choice
(I use seedless blackberry or raspberry)
2 Tbsp bourbon
1 Tbsp triple sec
2-3 Tbsp Orange Juice
A splash of club soda
Put preserves, bourbon, triple sec, and orange juice to ice filled shaker.
Shake until chilled. Pour into rocks glass filled with fresh ice. Top with a
splash of club soda. Garnish with orange slice.
Miracle on 34th Street
2 oz Bourbon
1 Tbsp sweet vermouth
1 ½ Tbsp cherry liqueur
2 drops cherry bitters
½ slice each clementine, lime and lemon
2 maraschino cherries (Luxardo if you got'em)
Combine all cocktail ingredients except fruit and cherries in an
ice filled ice shaker. Shake until chilled. Pour into iced filled rocks glass
or strain into coupe glass. Add fruit and cherries to the bottom of glass.
Apple Pie ala Whiskey
1 oz Vanilla Vodka
1 oz Fireball Whiskey
4 oz Apple Cider
Wet the rim of a rocks or coupe glass lightly and sugar the rim with
In an ice filled shaker, mix vodka, fireball, and cider and shake until chilled.
Pour into glass, being careful not to wipe off the sugar rim. Serve with cinnamon stick for garnish.