December 22nd is the official start of Winter here in the United States. Even though it’s been an unseasonable Fall and Winter with temperatures reaching 70 degrees, I’m still looking forward to creating traditional winter cocktails.
There are so many great traditional cocktails that come to mind when I think of Winter – Egg Nog, Hot Cider, Mulled Wine, Boozy Hot Cocoa and many more. Below are just a few of my favorites that I like to use in my cold weather cocktails.
1. Chocolate – Many people know that my favorite cocktail of all time is a Chocolate Martini. Chocolate drinks tend to be reserved for cold weather, especially a flavorful Boozy Hot Chocolate with lots of marshmallows and whipped cream. Creme De Cocoa is a sweet chocolate liqueur used to make a chocolate martini or it can be added to added to coffee or hot chocolate. Check out the recipe below for my favorite Boozy Hot Chocolate.
1 oz. Pinnacle Marshmallow Vodka
Add it to the Hot Chocolate
Top with CREAM Vanilla (Alcohol Infused) Whipped Cream
2. Mint – When I think of Christmas I think of candy canes, peppermint patties and those mint candies the old ladies would give us in church. Mint is definitely a staple of the Winter season. It’s also a great ingredient to add to your cocktails. The Food Network has a perfect and easy to make Candy Cane Cocktail.
3. Cinnamon – Cinnamon is a popular spice in the world of Winter Cocktails. It’s great with cold or hot cocktails. I like to make my own cinnamon simple syrup. It’s quick to make and easy to store and you can add it to just about anything. Below is one of my favorite cinnamon cocktails, it can be a Summer or Winter cocktail if you leave out the ice.
4. Cranberry – Cranberry season in the United States technically starts in November right around Thanksgiving. That’s when we begin to see cranberry sauce and cranberries incorporated into holiday dishes. We can continue this holiday tradition well into the Winter months. Fresh cranberry cocktails with cranberry garnishes are all the rage, but if fresh cranberries aren’t your thing you can always add a splash of cranberry juice to your favorite cocktail. Bonappetit has a great New Years Eve Cranberry Champagne Cocktail.
5. Apple – Apple how do I love thee? Let me count the ways – Apple Cider, Apple Sangria, Apple Martini and the list goes on. Apples are everywhere during the Winter months. You can always find apples at Supermarkets and Farmer’s Markets all year round. Apple is the perfect Fall/Winter fruit to include in any cold weather cocktail. One of my favorite to make is the Apple Cidecar.
3 oz Apple Cider
1 1/2 oz Brandy
1/2 oz Triple Sec or Cointreau
1/2 oz fresh squeezed lemon juice or sweet & sour mix
Those are just a few of my favorites. What are your favorites?