Here’s a Thresher’s guide that unravels all of the wonderous layers to Christmas cocktails, welcoming mixology to the comfort of your own home.
Keep it Simple with an Old Fashioned.
Why not kick off the holidays with a whiskey cocktail? And if you want something simple but hard-hitting then opt for the traditional Old Fashioned. There’s a reason why it’s been around for a long time.
All you need is:
- 2 tsp sugar syrup or 1 tsp granulated sugar
- 1-2 dashes Angostura bitters
- splash of water
- 60ml Scotch whisky or bourbon
- soda water (optional)
- orange slice
- maraschino cherry (optional)
It’s as easy as one, two, three (ingredients)
Put the sugar, bitters and water in a small tumbler. Mix until the sugar dissolves if using granulated. Fill your glass with ice and stir in the whisky. Add a splash of soda water if you like and mix. Garnish with the orange and cherry.
Thresher’s Tip: Oversized ice is vital to the old fashioned
Did you know?It’s never gone out of style, and probably never will.
The Gin Fizz
Replace your annual Bucks fizz, with something that has a little more of a punch. Make the most out of a brilliant bottle of gin by turning it into a beautiful cocktail: from classic martinis and fruity mixes to new takes on traditional recipes, there is a ton of experimenting to be done, but we thought we would start you off with something that will leave a long-lasting impression on you with a Gin Fizz. With just a handful of ingredients, you can create a refreshing drink that evokes summer.
All you need is:
- 50ml gin 25ml, lemon juice 2 tsp sugar syrup, ice, sparkling water, lemon slice
Time to get the fizz ready
Pour the gin, lemon juice and sugar syrup in a cocktail shaker and fill up with ice cubes. Shake well until the outside of the shaker feels cold then strain into a tall glass filled with more ice and top up with sparkling water. Garnish with a lemon slice.
Thresher’s Tip: We have no tips on this one, you really can’t go wrong with this uncomplicated cocktail. But If you don't want to waste a drop, you can gently pour a little soda water back and forth between the empty halves of the shaker to pick up any residual cocktail mixture before adding to the filled glass and topping up with soda water if necessary.
Did you know?
When you go back to making the classic, the key to a great gin and tonic recipe is to balance the bitterness of tonic against the gin. Never tasting one too much more than the other.
Looking for an after-dinner Christmassy treat? Sprinkle spices sugar on a Brandy Alexander for a perfect combination of naughty but nice. We are big fans of this delicious beauty created by @lorcansavage.
Preparing Your Drinkable Dessert
- 80ml brandy, 50ml crème de cacao, 50ml double creamice
Decorating Your Cocktail
- To make the garnish, mix the sugar, nutmeg and cinnamon together and set aside.
- Pour the brandy, crème de cacao and double cream into a cocktail shaker (or see tip, below), then add a generous handful of ice. Shake until the outside of the shaker is very cold, then strain into two small coupe or cocktail glasses.
- Garnish with a sprinkle of the spiced sugar, then serve.
Decorating Your Cocktail
1 tsp golden caster sugar, 1 tsp ground nutmeg, 1 tsp ground cinnamon
Mixing The Good Stuff.
Thresher’s Tip: There are always plenty of bottles of Bailey’s hanging around over Christmas, so why not consider creating a version of the Brandy Alexander using Baileys Original Irish Cream Liqueur. This captures the spirit of the cocktail as a delicious, creamy variation.
Did you know? Brandy Alexander is believed to have been invented during the marriage of Viscount Lascelles with Princess Mary in 1922, the cocktail is also known as Brandy Alexandra alternatively.
Mixologist, Daniel Turvey from the West Midlands shared his top tips when it comes to making cocktails at home:
- If you don’t have a cocktail shaker you can use a jar with a lid, an old sauce jar does wonders!
- If you have space, always freeze your glassware so the drink stays colder for longer, plus you will also save on ice
- Always try to have at least two different spirits in your drinks cabinet
- This final tip is not as easy as it sounds, but always try to reserve a quarter of each spirit so you can get more creative when you eventually stock up!
Ready to give it a go?
We are handing over the cocktail shakers, liquors and ice and want to hear from you! Tag us in your homemade creations and let us know how your Christmas cocktails taste! And start prepping for a year of cocktails with our seasonal guide. Whatever month, you will be fully prepared for the drinks trends of 2021.