Holidays means two things for most of us: feasting and family! As far as feasting, the panoply of dishes at the holiday table usually has hosts and guests alike wondering what they should offer to drink.
While I believe wine is best for the meal (and all your wine concerns can be quelled with one of our holiday six-packs….merciless plug, I know!), following are two cocktails that will certainly make cocktail hour and dessert a delicious success.
As far as family is concerned, these offerings should put a smile on the faces of friends and family alike and calm the nerves so often associated with entertaining for the holidays! Both the Gingered Apple and Kentucky Toddy can be served before or after your holiday dinner.
“The Gingered Apple” brings together the sweeter tones of Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur and Red Jacket Orchards All Natural Apple Cider with the savory elements of Buffalo Trace Bourbon, Dolin Dry Vermouth, and Regan’s Orange Bitters. The resultant cocktail is a balanced expression of autumnal yumminess! If you’re looking for a lighter expression of the ingredients it is best to shake in your cocktail shaker. If a stronger drink is desired, simply add ingredients to shaker, fill with ice, and stir instead of shaking to avoid dilution.
The Gingered Apple
• 2oz Domaine de Canton French Ginger Liqueur
• 2oz Buffalo Trace Bourbon
• 2oz Red Jacket Orchards All Natural Apple Cider
• 1 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth
• 3 dashes Regan’s Orange Bitters
• Gala apple slice garnish
Combine all ingredients in shaker, fill with ice, and shake well or stir. Strain into rocks glass and garnish with a slice of gala apple.
For those who have a chill in their bones from the season’s weather, I present the Kentucky Toddy. This is a variation on the Hot Toddy and we are simply substituting bourbon for scotch. This is a warming, soothing concoction that will be perfect after a belly full of Thanksgiving fare or a football highlight nightcap. However, don’t discount its worthiness at the dessert table. The Kentucky Toddy will be perfect with pumpkin, sweet potato, and minced meat pies!
The Kentucky Toddy
• 1 oz Buffalo Trace Bourbon
• 1 tbsp Wild Harvest Organic Wildflower Honey
• 1 tsp Fresh Lemon Juice
• ¼ cup boiling water
• Cinnamon Sticks
• Whole French Cloves
The best presentation for the Toddy is a clear mug. If one is not handy, you may use a rocks glass or other sturdy vessel. Avoid pouring boiling water into crystal! Add your bourbon and honey to your mug and stir. Next, add the fresh lemon juice (squeeze those lemons….it’s only 1 teaspoon!) and add boiling water last. Stir the mixture with a bar spoon and garnish with a cinnamon stick and whole clove. Adjust amounts of ingredients to taste.
Enjoy these cocktails and your holidays! Cheers!