‘Tis the season to rejoice with friends and family. But if you need a little social lubricant or want to kick the party up a notch, try whipping up some of these winter-smooth cocktails. If prepared correctly, these concoctions may just make the holidays, or break them if you’re not careful.
You’ve arrived at your traditional family gathering. Make this classic beverage and play it cool until you can catch the afterparty.
1 ounce vodka
1 ounce coffee liqueur (Kahlua)
1 ounce milk or cream.
Directions: Pour vodka, coffee liqueur and milk or cream with ice into shaker. Shake vigorously and dump contents in preferred glass. Voila! Serves one.
This drink is a little more sophisticated than a White Russian. Ideal for wealthy, loopy aunts.
1 ounce sweet blend of brandy
1 ounce White or Dark Crème de Cacao
1 ounce milk or cream.
Directions: Combine ingredients and shake. Strain into chilled martini glass. Serves one.
So, your family is insufferably boring. But they love you. Pep them up a bit with a batch of this beverage. Even dotty, old grandmas will enjoy it.
2 tablespoons sugar
1 bottle ruby port
1 cup water
Directions: Peel off the yellow rind of the lemon in thin strips, avoiding the white pith. Boil ingredients, including lemon strips with the sugar and port – any fruity wine will do. Stir until sugar is dissolved. When hot, add one cup boiling water and strain into a pitcher. Pour into glasses with or without nutmeg. Serves a dozen light drinkers.
The name of this drink can be misleading because it is actually sweet, jovial and pleasant, unlike the traditional millionaire persona. Make some for you and your favorite relative and start getting down to brass tax.
2 ounces rye whisky
½ ounce Grand Marnier
1 dash grenadine
1 egg white
Directions: Pour all contents into mixer and shake it as if several orangutans were goading you to it, then strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Serves two.
You’re exhausted from lying to relatives about how well you’re doing in school and when you expect to graduate. Now that the hard part is over, it’s time to catch the afterparty — by taxi, of course. An Irish Coffee ought to perk you up.
2 ounces Irish Whiskey
5-6 ounces coffee
2 teaspoons sugar
Your preferred amount of cream
Directions: Pour the whiskey, coffee and sugar into a mug. Stir it up and top it off with some whipped cream, unless you’re too lazy, drunk or depressed to bother whipping anything. Serves one.
Holiday Rum Punch
Make a batch of this fruity, boozy concoction and become an instant hit at the party.
6 whole oranges
1 bottle of rum
½ cup superfine sugar
½ gallon sweet apple cider
Directions: Stud oranges with cloves and bake until they soften. Place them in punch bowl and add rum and sugar. Set fire to rum (Jamaican rum is recommended), and in a few minutes begin slowly adding cider, thus extinguishing the flames. Stir in cinnamon and nutmeg and keep the mixture hot. Serves up to 20 people.
Hot Buttered Rum
This ain’t Harry Potter’s butterbeer, although, in theory they are comparable.
1 teaspoon light brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 ounce light rum
½ teaspoon butter
Directions: Combine sugar, butter, cinnamon and cloves in a mixing bowl and whisk until creamy. Pour into preferred mug and add rum, stir well. Then fill the mug the rest of the way with hot water and stir again. Sprinkle a little nutmeg on top to make it look Christmas-y.
Hot Milk Punch
This concoction invokes a totally new spin on the slogan, “Got Milk?”
1 ounce dark rum
1 ounce brandy
1 teaspoon superfine sugar
Fill with desired amount of milk
Sprinkle with nutmeg if desired
Pour contents in preferred container. Stir well, then pour concoction into glass/mug and fill with very hot milk. A few grains of nutmeg couldn’t hurt. Serves one.
Folks, I’ll be honest with you, this drink – and I use the term loosely – is a bit of a last resort to save your holiday. Your panic button, if you will, for when you’ve exhausted all other options, when you’ve had enough of the holiday spirit and you can’t stand to hear another damned carol. The Boilermaker is just what Santa ordered, and it doesn’t take much.
1 shot O’ whiskey
Directions: Knock back the whiskey and chase it with a hefty slug of your favorite cold beer. Repeat as needed and try to avoid saying or doing anything you’ll regret.