A bona fide classic, mulled wine is an essential part of any Christmas cocktail menu. Due to the nature of the drink, it’s a great option if you’re cooking for a crowd or want to prep a good amount ahead of time. To keep things tasty, pair an Italian wine like pinot noir and merlot with fresh apple cider, brandy, oranges, and your choice of fall spices. Additionally, keep the heat to a simmer at all times; boiling will cause some of the alcohol to burn off.
Spiked Gingerbread Eggnog
Even on its own, eggnog might be the most Christmasy drink of them all, but when you add in gingerbread spices, coffee liqueur, and whipped cream, it becomes something absolutely transcendent. If you’re looking for an extra dose of sweetness, drizzle some caramel on top and enjoy.
Don’t dream of a white Christmas, make it happen! Snowflake martinis are one of the trendiest cocktails out there because of their truly memorable flavor profile and crisp design. If you want to keep things classic, combine white chocolate liquor, vanilla vodka, and some heavy cream in a cocktail shaker. Dust the rim with sugar to get a “fresh snow” effect and get ready for the next round.
Spiked Hot Chocolate
More of an overarching category than a singular drink, there are a lot of different variations to spiked hot chocolate. Stay away from the powdered stuff if you can; you’ll have a much more flavorful drink if you mix together milk, sugar, and cocoa powder. Add in your spirit of choice once it’s finished cooking and serve in a deep mug.
- Pro Tip: Consider adding cinnamon whiskey or peppermint schnapps for a different flavor profile.
Sangria is a great way to spotlight seasonal fruits throughout the year but for some reason, the drink tends to be banished to summer cocktail menus. For a winterized take, try adding cranberry juice, fresh cranberries, apple slices, and citrus into your red sangria recipe. If you’re looking for an extra kick, toss in a little bourbon or garnish with a cinnamon stick for bonus style points.
Blood Orange Old Fashioned
Old fashioneds wouldn’t be the beloved drink they are today if it weren’t for oranges. If you’re looking to expand on this classic relationship, try swapping out standard bitters for flavored blood orange bitters and topping with blood orange zest. The red variety has a tarter flavor profile than navel oranges, plus it holds underlying raspberry notes that will have your customers swooning.
- Pro Tip: Discover more blood orange cocktails here.
Unlike traditional mimosas, peppermint mimosas forgo juice entirely and swap in peppermint schnapps for a brunch cocktail that sits firmly in the Christmas pantheon. This drink has some serious aesthetic capabilities too; try dipping your rim in melted dark chocolate and crushed candy canes for an eye-catching take on peppermint bark.