Lots of bars and restaurants around town are serving up special holiday cocktails. Here are 10 that seemed especially festive.
Rompope Oaxaqueña @ Puesto
Rompope is an eggnog-like drink popular in Central America. For this cocktail, Lucien Conner made his own and doubled down with some pinole (a Mexican beverage made from roasted corn and cinnamon). Yuu Baal Añejo mezcal makes it that much more festive.
Sinterklass @ Hundred Proof
Hannah Olsson’s perfect holiday sparkler includes Krogstad Aquavit, a spirit with hints of caraway and star anise, Old Forester bourbon, house-mulled wine, prosecco, and a rosemary garnish.
Buena Noche @ Havana 1920
Caramelized plantain purée? Yes, please. This Cuban holiday cocktail also includes Havana Club Anejo rum, fresh lime juice, fresh-pressed sugar cane, and R&D Aromatic #7 bitters.
Norwegian Hot Buttered Rum @ Charles + Dinorah (Pearl Hotel)
Having hot buttered rum sometime between now and January 1 is not just encouraged, but required. Bar manager TJ Majeske dug up his grandmother’s secret recipe, which he describes as "Christmas in a cup."
Dad Ate the Cookies @ Bankers Hill Bar & Restaurant
Colin Berger combined rye whiskey, lemon juice, orgeat, and cassis (a French blackcurrant liqueur) and topped it with housemade whipped cream and cookie crumbles. Think those tasty little jam thumbprint cookies.
Snip and Snails @ Malahat Tasting Room
Malahat makes a legit spiced rum and Ren Perakis, bar manager at Malahat’s tasting room, made it even better by butter-washing it and adding a housemade cranberry-orange simple syrup and orange bitters for this lovely holiday cocktail.
Pear-ly Legal @ Sycamore Den
Sycamore Den’s winter menu is one of the more intriguing I’ve seen this season. It’s tough to pick a fave, but I’ll go with this one: port, Cocchi Americano, pear-demerara syrup, Becherovka (a cinnamon-y Czech liqueur), and lemon.
Orchard Thief @ Madison
Bar manager Danny Kuehner has a few great holiday cocktails ready to go. I’ll opt for this one, which features Elijah Craig Small Batch Bourbon, muddled red apple, red apple balsamic vinegar, allspice dram, lemon, and Chimney cinnamon syrup.
Gingerbread Flip @ Polite Provisions
Polite Provisions is one of roughly 80 bars in the US hosting Miracle, a Christmas pop-up that features kitschy holiday decor and festive cocktails (Punch calls Miracle the Shake Shack of Christmas bars. Whatever, bah humbug). I’m a sucker for a good flip, and this one, made with bourbon, sherry, gingerbread syrup, Elemakule Tiki Bitters, a whole egg, and nutmeg sounds perfect.
Cindy Lou Who @ You & Yours Distilling Co.
There’s something about cordials that always makes me think of the holidays. You and Yours’ festive take on a classic fizz includes not one, but two. Cocktail makers looking for a challenge should try the full recipe, below. The rest of us will fah who foraze on over to Y & Y.
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