Food & Drink

Seasonal sips: 7 holiday drink recipes

Hot buttered rum toddy: It will warm you up, and possibly fill you up, too.
Hot buttered rum toddy: It will warm you up, and possibly fill you up, too. Appleton Estate Reserve

Whether you’re having a quiet night in with family or a larger gathering with friends, holiday celebrations often call for a cocktail — or three.

So we’ve got you covered with several easy but delicious cocktails that won’t tax your time or budget.

If there’s a chill in the air, consider starting with the roasted cider, a seasonal hot toddy that combines a classic mulled cider with the toasty flavor of hazelnuts.

Or, for a fresh take on tradition, try the ginger fashioned, a zippy rendition of the reliable old fashioned.

If you’re feeling particularly festive, the ruby spice bubbles offers a fresh — and refreshing — way to enjoy sparkling wine.

And if all the measuring and shaking feels like more work than you want to put in to the holidays, any number of South Florida cocktail houses currently have seasonal drinks on the menu.

We found the berry royale here at the new Drawing Room Bar & Lounge in the recently remodeled Shelborne Wyndham Grand in Miami Beach, and one of the region’s best mixologists, C. Virginia King (Rec Room, Broken Shaker), is putting fall in a glass with her whiskey cider.

Stay in or go out: A top-shelf cocktail is only a reach away.


Start to finish: 10 minutes.

Servings: 1.

6 ounces cider

1 1/2 ounces rye whiskey

1 ounce hazelnut liqueur (such as Frangelico)

Freshly grated nutmeg

Cinnamon stick, to garnish

In a small saucepan over medium heat or in a mug in the microwave, heat the cider until just steaming. Stir in the whiskey and hazelnut liqueur, then top with grated nutmeg. Serve with a cinnamon stick for stirring.

Source: AP.


Start to finish: 1 hour (10 minutes active).

Servings: 4.

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Pinch ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground dry ginger

3 tablespoons water

4 ounces unsweetened cranberry juice, chilled

1 (750-milliliter) bottle sparkling white wine, chilled

Brandied or candied cherries

In a microwave-safe bowl or glass, combine the sugar, cinnamon, cloves, ginger and water. Stir well, then microwave on high for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the sugar is completely dissolved. Set aside to cool completely.

In a cocktail shaker, combine the cooled spice syrup with the cranberry juice. Shake to combine, then divide between 4 cocktail flutes or coupe glasses. Top each with sparkling wine and add 1 cherry to each.

Source: AP.


Start to finish: 5 minutes.

Servings: 1.

1-inch piece fresh ginger

1 sugar cube

2-inch strip orange peel

2 dashes maple bitters

2 ounces bourbon


In an old fashioned glass, muddle the ginger, sugar, orange peel and bitters until the sugar is dissolved. Add the bourbon and stir. Add an ice cube and serve.

Source: AP.

Hot Buttered Rum Toddy

Start to finish: 1 hour (10 minutes active).

Servings: 12.

1 (750-milliliter) bottle of dark rum, like Gosling’s Black Seal

1 stick unsalted butter, softened

2 cups light brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg

Pinch ground cloves

Pinch salt

Boiling water

In a bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt. Refrigerate until almost firm. Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the butter mixture into 12 small mugs. Pour about 3 ounces of rum into each mug, filling about halfway. Top with boiling water, stir well, and serve immediately.

Source: Gosling’s.

The Snowball

Start to finish: 10 minutes.

Servings: 1.

2 ounces Seco Herrerano (can substitute white rum or cachaça)

1/2 ounce condensed milk

1/2 ounce coconut cream

3 ounces espresso or strong-brewed coffee

2-3 ice cubes

Frozen foam:

1 1/2 ounces Seco Herrerano

1 ounce condensed milk

1 ounce coconut cream

1/2 cup whole milk


Put first five ingredients in a blender and blend for 2 minutes. Pour mixture into a pilsner glass, filling 3/4 way. Put remaining five ingredients into a blender and blend for 2 minutes. Top glass with foam.

Source: Erick Barrios for the Hilton Panama.

Whiskey Cider

Start to finish: 2 hours (10 minutes active).

Servings: 1.

3/4 ounce cinnamon syrup (see below)

1 1/2 ounces rye whiskey

1 ounce fresh apple cider

3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice

1 dash Angostura bitters

Cinnamon syrup: Combine 1 cup each water and granulated sugar with 3 cinnamon sticks in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Cool and strain before using. Combine syrup with remaining ingredients and ice in a cocktail shaker; shake for 30 seconds, then strain over ice into a Collins glass. Garnish with apple slices and a cinnamon stick.

Source: C. Virginia King for Bloomberg Businessweek.

Berry Royale

Start to finish: 5 minutes.

Servings: 1.

1 ounce Reyka Vodka

1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice

1/2 ounce simple syrup


Combine vodka, lemon juice and syrup with ice in a cocktail shaker and shake for 30 seconds, then strain into a flute glass. Top with champagne and garnish with cranberries.

Source: Reyka Vodka.