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From the stocking stuffers to the tree trimming to the perfect holiday frock, there's a lot of prep work that goes into hosting a Christmas party. So much to focus on, even, that sometimes cocktails can get lost in the mix or left to the very last minute. To avoid the same old red or green punch recipe (come on — 'tis the season!), we've rounded up 13 tasty and festive Christmas cocktails to get you and your guests in the holiday spirit.
Note: We've listed ingredients you can easily shop online — but perishables and produce we recommend buying in stores.
This cozy Christmas cocktail from Grey Goose will take the chill out of any winter's night with its warm and spicy flavor profile. Vanilla vodka, vermouth, and lemon juice get a toasty kick from spiced syrup, and an egg white provides a creamy consistency. Topped with a festive piece of star anise, this fragrant cocktail will get you into the holiday spirit in no time.
Long Flight Home
Add all ingredients (minus the egg white) together in a shaker and shake vigorously. Strain into a coupe or wine glass. Dry shake the egg white until frothy and strain on top of cocktail. Add garnish of star anise pod and a drop each of Peychaud’s and Angostura bitters.
Recipe courtesy of Grey Goose.
For a fun winter twist on the classic mimosa, add a splash of tart cranberry juice and a snowy white sugar rim. We love the use of fragrant rosemary and a fresh cranberry garnish in this simple but festive Christmas cocktail from Delish. Perfect for boozy holiday brunches, this recipe makes 12 mimosas.
Rub rims of champagne flutes with lime and dip in sugar. Pour 1/4 cup cranberry juice into each glass and top with Champagne.
Use a toothpick to poke a hole through cranberries. Thread rosemary skewer through cranberries and garnish mimosas.
Recipe courtesy of Delish.
This festive Cardamom Pear Punch from Smirnoff is packed with the earthy and complex flavors of cardamom, spicy fresh ginger, and perfectly tart red pears. If you're hosting a boozy holiday party, you'll want this delicious punch recipe on hand.
Cardamom Pear Punch
Make the Cardamom Ginger Syrup. Place honey, water, cardamon, ginger, and vanilla in a small pot, and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Turn the heat off and let this steep 1 hour (or overnight) for the best flavor.
In a medium punch bowl or beverage dispenser, pour in the Smirnoff Vodka, pear juice, bitters, and sliced pears. Stir in the Cardamon Ginger Syrup. Refrigerate until ready to serve, and serve over ice.
Note: This can be made a day ahead or the night before the party and refrigerated, allowing the flavors to meld.
Recipe courtesy of Smirnoff.
This Trick Nog is a modern twist on the classic holiday tipple. Brown sugar syrup, Cherry Heering, and a splash of orange juice evokes the flavors of holiday spice and merriment in this soul-warming Christmas concoction from Wild Turkey.
Shake and double strain. Grate cinnamon on top and garnish with orange peel and cinnamon stick.
Recipe courtesy of Bartender Morgan Schick for Wild Turkey.
If you're already a big fan of the Moscow Mule, we suggest you cozy up with a refreshing Yule Mule from Absolut Elyx. From the perfectly tart cranberry juice to the fragrant and festive star anise garnish, this clever riff on a crowd-pleasing cocktail is sure to bring the cheer this holiday season.
Combine all ingredients in a copper mule cup over crushed ice, top with ginger beer, and garnish with lime wheels and star anise.
Recipe courtesy of Absolut Elyx.
Get in the holiday spirit with this delicious Warm Apple Cidre recipe from Stella Artois. Fragrant, easy to make, and packed with the savory and comforting flavors of winter, this delicious batched cocktail will help you shine as a host all season long.
Warm Apple Cidre
Mix Stella Artois Cidre in sauce pot along with other ingredients, except butter. Bring to a boil, then lower flame and reduce down to approximately 1 cup.
Strain and discard solids; whisk in butter. Pour hot Stella Artois Cidre mixture into a mug. Top with whipped cream and vanilla extract. Garnish with cinnamon stick and orange zest.
Recipe courtesy of Credit: Chef Andre Marrero for Stella Artois.
This clean and simple cocktail from NOLET's Gin is creamy winter-white and has just the right amount of classic cold-weather flavors, including nutmeg, maple syrup, and sage. A dry gin like NOLET's works best in this recipe, and we recommend serving this stunning libation up in a coupe. Cheers!
Maple & Sage Gin Cream
Muddle two sage leaves in a mixing tin. Add lemon juice, heavy cream, maple syrup, and NOLET'S Silver Dry Gin. Grate nutmeg, add ice, and shake. Fine-strain into coupe glass. Garnish with sage leaf.
Recipe courtesy of NOLET's Gin.
Everyone's had a traditional White Russian or two in their time, but we don't think you've ever had one as tasty as this Gingerbread Eggnog White Russian riff from Delish. Comforting winter flavors of eggnog, molasses, and ginger join the ingredient list in this creative riff on the classic, and the cinnamon-sugar rim is the icing on the cake.
Gingerbread Eggnog White Russian
Mix cinnamon and sugar, then pour onto a plate. Wet rims of each glass and dip them in the cinnamon-sugar mixture. In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, pour eggnog, vodka, Kahlua, molasses, and ginger. Shake to combine. Pour into glasses and top with whipped cream, then add a light drizzle of molasses.
Recipe courtesy of Delish.
This riff on a classic hot toddy recipe from Erick Castro of San Diego's Soda & Swine makes for a comforting and delicious winter party punch. We love the addition of cinnamon here in place of cloves for a punch of Christmas spice.
Build ingredients into warm mug and top with boiling water. Garnish with an orange slice. To make cinnamon simple syrup, bring four cinnamon sticks, 1 cup sugar, and 1 cup water to a boil. Remove from heat and let cool.
Recipe courtesy of Erick Castro, Soda & Swine.
This cocktail recipe from Greg Buttera of Chicago's Sportsman's Club is dry-shaken with an egg for a super creamy and frothy mouthfeel. The warm and spicy notes of Averna Amaro are enhanced by Angostura bitters, honey, and nutmeg for a delicious and comforting holiday libation.
Combine all ingredients in a shaker tin, and shake briefly without ice to combine. Fill shaker with large, solid ice cubes to fill the tin and shake again, vigorously, for 10-15 seconds. Strain into a snifter or small highball glass. Garnish with a dusting of freshly grated nutmeg.
Recipe courtesy of Greg Buttera, Sportsman's Club.
This recipe from Brooklyn-based mixologist Jeremy Oertel of Donna BK makes for an addictively refreshing holiday party cocktail. Red wine and pear liqueur add depth to this otherwise super crisp recipe, and it's topped with seltzer for added bubbles. We'll cheers to that.
Build in a glass and top with seltzer. Garnish with a pear fan and grated nutmeg.
Recipe courtesy of Jeremy Oertel, Donna BK.
Think of this cocktail from Los Angeles-based mixologist Damian Windsor of Power House as a grown-up version of the hot chocolate you used to love sipping as a kid. Two special types of tequila are recommended for this slightly spicy and comforting hot cocktail.
Heat milk and Chocolate Abuelita in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Mix continuously with wire whisk until mixture is frothy and starts to simmer. Remove from heat and add Patrón Anejo Tequila and Patrón XO Café Incendio to taste. Pour into a warmed mug.
Float thickened cream on top and dust with freshly grated cinnamon.
Recipe courtesy of Damian Windsor, Power House.
This recipe for The Hot Swede from Swedish cider brand Rekorderlig is bursting with the savory flavors of winter — apple brandy, cloves, and ginger ... oh my! — and it's the perfect sweater-weather beverage or batched party punch.
The Hot Swede
Heat the cider in a pot. Mix all other ingredients together and stir until the syrups dissolve. Pour the hot cider into the glass or cup, and stir a last time before serving with a caramel apple.
Recipe courtesy of Rekorderlig.