6 Holiday Cocktails You Need to Try

| story and food styling by Beth Maya |
| photography by Alex Lepe |
| prop styling by Deborah Points |

Well, it looks like we are in the full swing of the holiday season. We have eaten all the turkey sandwiches we can handle, and the rush to find the perfect gift is whirling around us. Of course this time of year brings such fond memories of holidays past and the promise of great memories still to come. We have so much to look forward to this month, especially the eating and drinking - holiday dinners with family, the annual office party, quiet gift exchanges between friends at your favorite restaurant. And let’s not forget the New Year’s Eve bash.

So this December, let us focus on the cocktails that go along with this festive season. They can set the tone for any gathering and be the finishing touch to any occasion. Finding the perfect holiday cocktail can also be quite daunting, so I knew I had to call in the experts.

My instant choice was Robert Chicotsky who runs Chicotsky’s Liquor and Fine Wine, a family-owned business that has been around for more than 80 years. Chicotsky’s began business right after prohibition ended in 1933. I don’t think there is more expertise than that. I asked Robert to come up with some of his favorite holiday cocktails and find the perfect liquors to create them. Of course you can switch up the liquors with your favorite brand of spirit and make it your own or just stick to the recipe. Either way, you are in for a winter treat. So give the holidays a boost this year, and mix up some of these magical cocktails at your next gathering. Happy Holidays!

Dark and Stormy

2 ounces of The Kraken Spiced Rum 94 Proof

Gosling Ginger Beer

Directions: Fill a copper mug with ice and add 2 ounces of The Kraken Spiced Rum. Fill with Gosling Ginger Beer and stir. Garnish the drink with a lime wedge.

Classic Martini

½ ounce to 1 ounce of Martini & Rossi Extra Dry Vermouth

2 dashes of Regan’s Orange Bitters

3 ½ ounces of Tito’s Vodka or Bombay Sapphire Gin

Lemon twist, olives or cocktail onions

Directions: Fill a mixing tin with ice, and then add dry vermouth, orange bitters, vodka or gin. Stir the ingredients and then strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish the drink with a lemon twist, olive or cocktail onions.

Christmas Party Punch

32 ounces cranberry juice

8 ounces orange juice

8 ounces of Nue Vodka

16 ounces of Sprite

Orange slices and frozen cranberries for garnish

Directions: Combine the cranberry juice, orange juice and vodka in a punch bowl, then top with Sprite. Garnish with orange slices and frozen cranberries and serve chilled.

Bourbon Eggnog

12 large egg yolks

2 cups of sugar

4 cups cold milk

1 cup of heavy cream

1 ½ cups of Bulleit Bourbon

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Freshly grated nutmeg

Directions: In a large bowl, whisk the yolks and the sugar until smooth and frothy. Whisk in the milk, cream, bourbon and vanilla. Transfer into a pitcher or punch bowl for serving. Top each individual serving with freshly grated nutmeg.

Old Fashioned

Maraschino cherry

1 orange slice

½ teaspoon sugar

4 - 5 dashes of Angostura Bitters

2 ounces of Buffalo Trace Whiskey

Splash of Topo Chico

Directions: In a short glass muddle Maraschino cherry, orange slice, sugar and Angostura Bitters. Fill glass with ice and top with 2 ounces of Buffalo Trace Whiskey and a splash of Topo Chico, then stir.

Cafe Royal

1 1/2 ounces Patrón XO Café

Your favorite fresh brewed coffee

Freshly whipped cream

Cocoa powder

Directions: In a heated coffee mug, add Patron XO Café. Fill with coffee until one inch from the top of the mug. Top with freshly whipped cream and garnish with cocoa powder.