Easy Holiday Cocktails

December 7, 2020

Easy Holiday Cocktails I wit & whimsy

This year was the year I discovered my inner bartender. Bored in quarantine and trying to find ways to look forward to the weekends, I up and decided to learn how to make the fancy cocktails I always ordered at restaurants and bars and began posting myself making them to Instagram. “Let’s Make a Drink” was born and I continued it on for months every weekend. 

For me, Christmas drinks are a way to enjoy the festive times of the season. I have so many happy memories with my family drinking holiday cocktails on Christmas Eve, New Year’s Eve and Christmas Day. I love to play bartender for friends & family and make easy holiday cocktails that feel festive but also aren’t overly complicated to make.

Easy Holiday Cocktails

I dreamt up – and then experimented – with two easy recipes that were festive takes on favorite, classic drinks of mine for this blog post: The Kir & The Old Fashioned. These cocktail recipes are both simple to make, taste delicious and don’t stray too far from the original. But they are different enough to help you taste a bit of the holiday spirit. 

I hope you’ll give these drinks a try and let me know if you do!

Christmas Kir Cocktail I wit & whimsy

Christmas Kir Cocktail I wit & whimsy

Christmas Kir Cocktail I wit & whimsy

Christmas Kir Cocktail I wit & whimsy

Christmas Kir Cocktail I wit & whimsy

Christmas Kir Cocktail I wit & whimsy

The Christmas Kir:

A kir royale is one of my favorite celebratory drinks and my mom, sister & I all drink it on Christmas Eve usually. My Christmas Kir version adds a more seasonal touch with the addition of elderflower and a bit of cranberry pomegranate alongside the traditional Creme de Cassis. 

Serves 2

  • 2oz Cranberry Pomegranate Juice
  • 1 oz Creme de Cassis
  • Saint Germain Elderflower Liquor
  • French Champagne

Combine juice and Creme de Cassis in a pan on the stovetop on Low-Medium heat. Bring to a boil and then simmer until thickened and reduced to about 2 oz. Let cool. 

Pour .5oz cooled syrup into champagne coups. Add a splash of Saint Germain (to taste). Top with chilled champagne. Top with rosemary garnish if desired.

Easy Holiday Cocktails I wit & whimsy

Easy Holiday Cocktails I wit & whimsy

Easy Holiday Cocktails I wit & whimsy

Easy Holiday Cocktails I wit & whimsy

The Festive Old Fashioned:

An old fashioned is my Winter go-to but I wondered if it could be made more seasonal for the holidays and it turns out a mellow spiced simple syrup gives it the perfect, subtle festive touch.

Serves 2

  • 2oz Cranberry Pomegranate Juice
  • 2 TBSP honey (less if you prefer less sweetness)
  • 1 TSP vanilla
  • 4oz Good Bourbon (I like Woodford)
  • Orange Bitters

Make the spiced simple syrup. Combine juice, honey & vanilla in a pan on the stovetop on Low-Medium heat. Bring to a boil and then simmer until thickened and reduced to about 1 oz. Let cool. 

Combine 4 oz bourbon, 1oz of your spiced syrup and 3-5 dashes of orange bitters in a cocktail mixing glass filled with ice. Stir until cold and then strain into glasses.

Add orange slice or cranberry garnish and serve. I also think a cinnamon stick garnish would be so cute for this one!

. . .

Do you have a favorite holiday drink? A few other holiday drinks you may want to try? I suggest:

  • Mulled Wine
  • White Russian
  • Peppermint Martini (use a candy cane garnish!)
  • Spiked Hot Chocolate

I hope you’ll try these holiday cocktails at your next Christmas party or holiday parties – let me know what you think of them!

Gold Rimmed Coup Glass // Candy Cane Old Fashioned Glass // Cocktail Mixing Glass & Strainer // Mixing Spoon

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[Carter Fish Photography & Pret a Provost Photography]

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8 comments on “Easy Holiday Cocktails”

  1. I loved and miss Let’s Make a Drink so am happy to see this post. I just tried a French 75 because of that series! Am looking forward to trying these, too!

  2. Wow, the first one looks so gorgeous in that glass!
    And have you always had a sister?! I never remember you mentioning her before.

    1. I had to have the glass after I spotted it! And ha – yes! But I keep mentions of my family to a minimum as they didn’t sign up to share their lives on the internet 🙂

  3. I was literally just thinking to myself that I needed to get the things to make kir royale’s, and now I am definitely going to make your Christmas Kir!! Sounds so good, Meghan! Love this blog version of Let’s Make a Drink! 🙂

  4. Love this holiday Let’s Make a Drink! You introduced me to Kirs this year and I love them – also realized my local liquor store sells mini bottles of St Germaine so I’m excited to try this, and my husband loves Old Fashioneds so I’ll have to try making this one for him. LMAD brought me joy this year!

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