How Cindy’s Coquito Became My Go-To Holiday Drink

We teamed up with LG Studio to share the holiday-ready drink we’ll be sipping throughout the season: Puerto Rican coquito. Creamy and dreamy, this classic Christmas beverage stars rum, condensed milk, and of course, coconut. For added presentation poin…

We teamed up with LG Studio to share the holiday-ready drink we’ll be sipping throughout the season: Puerto Rican coquito. Creamy and dreamy, this classic Christmas beverage stars rum, condensed milk, and of course, coconut. For added presentation points, serve it with a sphere of Craft Ice™ from the LG Studio InstaView refrigerator, along with a sprinkle of grated cinnamon.


Having been born and raised in South Florida, a frosty, snow-filled Christmas was never really in the books for me. Swap out crackling fireplaces and sledding for breezy palm trees, not to mention tons of humidity, and you’ve got yourself a Miami winter. So it’s not changing leaves or chilly temps that mark the beginning of a typical holiday season in my mind—it’s the parties.

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Vanilla-Pear Holiday Punch

This holiday punch is unlike any I’ve ever had, and I think you’re going to love it. It’s not too sweet. It tastes like pear, vanilla, spice…

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naturally sweetened punch recipe

This holiday punch is unlike any I’ve ever had, and I think you’re going to love it. It’s not too sweet. It tastes like pear, vanilla, spice and everything nice. It’s a smooth, easy sipper, even with tequila inside. Yep, tequila!

This pitcher of cocktails was inspired by an oldie but goodie, my Pear Nectar Cocktails with Reposado Tequila. That cocktail is proof that simple ingredients can yield a delightfully complex cocktail. If you’re just making one or two drinks, follow that recipe instead.

You won’t need any fancy liqueurs for this holiday punch recipe, just some pear juice, reposado tequila, plus a few basic ingredients—lemon juice, club soda, cinnamon and vanilla extract.

holiday punch ingredients

I know we’re skipping the holiday parties this year, but I just couldn’t keep this recipe to myself until next December. If you’d like to batch some cocktails for your family, this punch is just the ticket.

Or you could drop off a jar of cocktails with friends or neighbors to share some holiday cheer. I wrote the recipe to yield eight drinks and you can divide or multiply as you’d like.

Continue to the recipe...

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A Cozy, Warming Bourbon Cider—With a Chocolatey Twist

We’ve partnered with Basil Hayden’s®—makers of smooth, spicy-sweet Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey that’s perfect for mixing into cocktails or drinking neat—to celebrate special moments with friends and family. Throughout the season, we’ll be highlig…

We've partnered with Basil Hayden's®—makers of smooth, spicy-sweet Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey that's perfect for mixing into cocktails or drinking neat—to celebrate special moments with friends and family. Throughout the season, we'll be highlighting delicious ideas for enjoying bourbon with your closest loved ones at small, intimate gatherings, from low-key backyard hangouts to special holiday dinners.

Here, our Resident Bartender Elliott Clark shares a cozy cocktail to sip throughout the holidays: a bourbon cocoa cider starring Basil Hayden's.

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The Tequila Old Fashioned Rick Martinez Is Toasting With This Holiday

We teamed up with Tequila Don Julio to share the recipe for a classic old fashioned, with a little tequila twist. Starring Don Julio Reposado Tequila, this cocktail’s simple to stir up yet filled with cozy-warm flavors. The best part? Have all the ingr…

We teamed up with Tequila Don Julio to share the recipe for a classic old fashioned, with a little tequila twist. Starring Don Julio Reposado Tequila, this cocktail’s simple to stir up yet filled with cozy-warm flavors. The best part? Have all the ingredients you need, including a full-size bottle of Don Julio, delivered straight to your door with this Cocktail Courier kit.

Here, Food52 Resident Rick Martinez shares his family’s annual holiday tradition—and how it’ll look a little different this year.

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A socially distanced Christmas in France

Hello, Emily here – ready to celebrate the holidays! We were supposed to be spending this Christmas on the beach in Australia (where I am originally from) but with travel not possible, we’ll be spending it at home in Paris. Holiday traditions in France are so different from Australia (the weather for a start – it was 39ºC/102ºF in Brisbane the last time we spent the holidays…

Hello, Emily here – ready to celebrate the holidays! We were supposed to be spending this Christmas on the beach in Australia (where I am originally from) but with travel not possible, we’ll be spending it at home in Paris. Holiday traditions in France are so different from Australia (the weather for a start – it was 39ºC/102ºF in Brisbane the last time we spent the holidays there) and I’ve had a wonderful time discovering French holiday customs over the past few years. The food, the wine, the decorations, the language. Oh, and did I mention the food?!

This year we’re in semi-lockdown and with most of the activities on my Things to do in Paris at Christmas list off-limits it’s the perfect time to finally try all those creative projects that I never get around to. The Christmas carols are on repeat, we are staying home en famille (with our family), counting our blessings, and beginning to get festive.

Last weekend I simmered some spiced vin-chaud (mulled wine) while we decorated our Sapin de Noël (Christmas tree). The smell of cardamom, cloves and oranges wafted through the apartment as we unpacked our decorations, each one holding sentimental memories. I added some new ones to represent our 2020; a paintbrush and wrench, to remind us that we did a full renovation, during a pandemic, while I was heavily pregnant, and a personalized ornament for our baby girl who we welcomed in July (mid-renovation – it was a lot!). My daughter and I picked the biggest tree we could find and now it sits, quietly dropping its needles on the floor, by our window so the neighbors can enjoy it as well. We are taking bets on who will attack it first – the toddler or Noisette, our dog.

We’ve cracked open the chocolate advent calendars and light an advent candle in the evenings. Each year I also print out a selection of photos of especially funny and memorable moments from the year, my daughter decorates some envelopes they go into and at breakfast my husband opens them day-by-day. They hang along a strand of tinsel until at least the end of January and then we bundle them all up and they go into a memory box, along with the ones from previous years. 

Continue Reading A socially distanced Christmas in France...

12 Warming Whiskey Cocktails to Slow-Sip This Winter

Before I’d ever tried a cocktail, I knew my future with whiskey was bright. It was the prom after-party, and everyone was smashed.I, still in my rumpled prom suit, was taking swigs from a full bottle of Laphroaig Scotch I had borrowed from my parents’…

Before I’d ever tried a cocktail, I knew my future with whiskey was bright. It was the prom after-party, and everyone was smashed.I, still in my rumpled prom suit, was taking swigs from a full bottle of Laphroaig Scotch I had borrowed from my parents’ liquor cabinet—I figured they wouldn’t miss it. I remember—just barely—my friend Justin’s dad (hosting on some “chill parenting” or harm-reduction tip) approaching me at the party and telling me, “son, you have good taste in whiskey. All these other kids are gonna have terrible hangovers in the morning, but you’ll be just fine.” With those reassuring words still lingering in my mind, I lay down in the middle of the dining room floor, and passed out.

Ever since this Laphroig-fueled experience, I’ve been a lover of whiskey. Scotch, yes, but also bourbon, rye, Japanese, Canadian, and Irish. Though I will still happily sip a fine whiskey straight or on the rocks (occasionally I’ll even take a swig from the bottle), I now consume most of my whiskey in cocktail-form. As the first snow settles on the eaves, there’s really nothing better than a rich, bone-warming whiskey cocktail or two as you watch the world go by.

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Mulled Wine

Jack and I may not always get around to putting up the Christmas tree, but we do love to celebrate the holiday season by making this mulled wine recipe. Packed with notes of citrus, apple, and warming spices, it’s cozy and festive – the per…


Jack and I may not always get around to putting up the Christmas tree, but we do love to celebrate the holiday season by making this mulled wine recipe. Packed with notes of citrus, apple, and warming spices, it’s cozy and festive – the perfect defense against Chicago’s winter weather. Colorful garnishes like orange slices, cranberries, and fresh rosemary make it even more cheery. With a mug of it in hand, I forget that it’s cold outside in an instant! If you’ve never made mulled wine before, you’re in for a treat. It’s not only a) delicious and b) super simple […]

The post Mulled Wine appeared first on Love and Lemons.

The New Old Fashioned Cocktail

Who wants a drink? It’s been a long week. Let’s relax with an Old Fashioned, one of the oldest cocktails around. The Old Fashioned is for whiskey…

The post The New Old Fashioned Cocktail appeared first on Cookie and Kate.

old fashioned cocktail with maple syrup

Who wants a drink? It’s been a long week. Let’s relax with an Old Fashioned, one of the oldest cocktails around. The Old Fashioned is for whiskey lovers, certainly, but it also might convince naysayers to become whiskey cocktail drinkers after all.

Like mulled wine, the Old Fashioned is perfect during the holidays, on chilly evenings, and basically any time you find yourself sitting around a fire. It’s a bold, dynamic drink that’s a little citrusy and a little sweet.

I came up with one delicious twist on the classic recipe, which also happens to be a shortcut. If you’ve been following this blog for a while, I bet you can guess what it is.

old fashioned ingredients

That’s right, I used maple syrup instead of simple syrup. Historically, Old Fashioned cocktails are made with a sugar cube or simple syrup. I’m here to tell you that they taste better with maple syrup, which complements bourbon’s caramel notes and stirs in like a dream.

Back when the Old Fashioned gained popularity, maple syrup was not readily accessible. Lucky for us, it is now. I hope you’ll give it a try!

Continue to the recipe...

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A Wintry Rum Cocktail to Sip Beside the Fire

We’ve partnered with Santa Teresa 1796—a dry, refined rum crafted in Caracas, Venezuela—to share a winter-ready sipper you’ll want to stir up all season long: a rum-forward riff on the classic Martinez cocktail from Maine-based bartender Harper Fendler…

We’ve partnered with Santa Teresa 1796—a dry, refined rum crafted in Caracas, Venezuela—to share a winter-ready sipper you’ll want to stir up all season long: a rum-forward riff on the classic Martinez cocktail from Maine-based bartender Harper Fendler.


With the temperature dropping here in Maine, I’m beginning to layer up. The boots and heavier jacket are a given, but come winter, I like to have something to warm the soul, too.

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Christmas Margarita

The Christmas margarita is the best holiday drink! This brilliant cranberry spin is irresistible and perfect for festivities. Looking for a Christmas cocktail that’s fun and a little…unexpected? It’s not often that tequila features in holiday cocktails. But this one is absolutely stellar: try the Christmas Margarita! Why not bring everyone’s favorite drink to your holiday festivities? This one keeps all the character of a classic margarita and adds cranberry juice for a vibrant color and sweet tart nuance. With a garnish of fresh cranberries and rosemary, it’s holiday perfection. We created this drink especially for a virtual holiday party with our friend Sierra: it could not be more festive! What’s in a Christmas margarita? Who doesn’t love a good margarita? (No one.) This classic cocktail is one of the most iconic in the world: it was invented in the 1930’s and is even more popular today. In fact, the classic margarita is on the list of International Bartender Association’s IBA official cocktails. This means there’s an “official” definition of how its made: it’s just three ingredients: lime juice, Cointreau, and tequila. The Christmas margarita is a spin-off on the classic. We’ve kept all the classic ingredients and added 100% cranberry juice. […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

The Christmas margarita is the best holiday drink! This brilliant cranberry spin is irresistible and perfect for festivities.

Christmas margarita

Looking for a Christmas cocktail that’s fun and a little…unexpected? It’s not often that tequila features in holiday cocktails. But this one is absolutely stellar: try the Christmas Margarita! Why not bring everyone’s favorite drink to your holiday festivities? This one keeps all the character of a classic margarita and adds cranberry juice for a vibrant color and sweet tart nuance. With a garnish of fresh cranberries and rosemary, it’s holiday perfection. We created this drink especially for a virtual holiday party with our friend Sierra: it could not be more festive!

What’s in a Christmas margarita?

Who doesn’t love a good margarita? (No one.) This classic cocktail is one of the most iconic in the world: it was invented in the 1930’s and is even more popular today. In fact, the classic margarita is on the list of International Bartender Association’s IBA official cocktails. This means there’s an “official” definition of how its made: it’s just three ingredients: lime juice, Cointreau, and tequila.

The Christmas margarita is a spin-off on the classic. We’ve kept all the classic ingredients and added 100% cranberry juice. Because it’s unsweetened and very tart, we added a splash of simple syrup to balance things out. Here’s what you’ll need to make a Christmas margarita:

  • 100% cranberry juice
  • Tequila (use blanco or reposado)
  • Cointreau
  • Fresh lime juice
  • Simple syrup or maple syrup
Christmas margarita recipe

100% cranberry juice vs sweetened: what to know

When you’re shopping for the cranberry juice for your Christmas margarita, make sure to find 100% cranberry juice, which is unsweetened. You can easily find it at most grocery stores, but it’s right next to the sweetened cranberry juice. Here’s what to know for when you’re shopping:

  • Sweetened cranberry juice aka cranberry juice cocktail has added sugars and sometimes high-fructose corn syrup as sweetener. This type of cranberry juice has been available since the 1940’s for making classic cranberry cocktails like the Vodka Cranberry. However, we like using the modern 100% juice.
  • 100% cranberry juice is unsweetened and made only with cranberries: no added sugar! The benefit? The color is brighter, and you can sweeten your drink to taste.

Did you buy unsweetened? That’s ok, just don’t sweeten your drink as much. Use half of the simple syrup in the recipe below — or even add it to taste.

How to make a salt rim

Of course, a perfect Christmas margarita needs a salt rim! Why is salt used in margaritas? Salt brings out the sweet and sour flavors in the drink. Plus, it’s ultra classic. For the Christmas margarita you could also make a sugar rim if you’d like! Just use superfine or granulated sugar and follow the instructions below. Here’s how to make a salt rim:

  1. Use kosher salt or flaky sea salt (not table salt!). These types of salt are chunky and make for just the right texture on the rim. Or, you can make festive Margarita Salt!
  2. Take a lime wedge and cut a notch in the middle. Then slide it around the rim of the glass. This moistens the rim without having to use your fingers.
  3. Rim the outside edge only. Spread the salt on a plate in an even layer. Tilt the glass into the salt so that the sugar sticks to the outside edge. Shake off any loose salt into the sink.
Christmas margarita

How to make a Christmas margarita!

Once you’ve rimmed the glasses, making a Christmas margarita is very simple: all you have to do is shake the ingredients together in a cocktail shaker! Here’s what to do:

  1. Rim the glass with salt. See above!
  2. Shake in a cocktail shaker. Shake the cranberry juice, tequila, lime juice, Cointreau and simple syrup together with ice in a cocktail shaker (or use a mason jar with a lid).
  3. Strain into a glass and add ice. Strain it into a glass and serve with ice! You can also add fresh cranberries and a sprig of rosemary as a beautiful garnish. Speaking of ice…

Step it up with clear ice

Want to have the most beautiful look for this Christmas margarita? Look in the photos: see that beautiful crystal clear ice block that looks like it’s cut off a glacier? It’s called Clear Ice. Clear ice is artisan style ice that’s crystal clear, unlike normal ice that’s cloudy. It’s very easy to make at home: Alex created a method that we do with all of our cocktail recipes! Go to How to make clear ice.

Salt rim and clear ice

What to serve with a Christmas margarita

This Christmas margarita is ideal for holiday gatherings: especially a holiday cocktail party! We made this cocktail and our Christmas martini for a special virtual cocktail party with our friend Sierra from Eclectic Kurves. These drinks pair perfectly with nibbles and appetizers! You can make up a holiday platter with some of the ideas below:

When to serve a Christmas margarita

The Christmas margarita is ideal for holiday gatherings in the fall and winter. It works as a:

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Christmas margarita

The Christmas Margarita


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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

The Christmas margarita is the best holiday drink! This brilliant cranberry spin is irresistible and perfect for festivities.


Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 ounces (3 tablespoons) tequila blanco or reposado**
  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) 100% cranberry juice (not sweetened)*
  • 3/4 ounce (1 1/2 tablespoons) Cointreau
  • 3/4 ounce (1 1/2 tablespoon) fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon simple syrup or maple syrup*
  • Kosher salt or flaky sea salt, for the rim (optional)
  • Ice, for serving (try clear ice)
  • For the garnish: cranberries, rosemary sprig

Instructions

  1. Cut a notch in a lime wedge, then run the lime around the rim of a glass. Dip the edge of the rim into a plate of salt (or for a festive look, use Margarita Salt).
  2. Place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and fill it with ice. Shake until cold. Strain the margarita into the glass with the salted rim. Fill the glass with ice, garnish with cranberries and a rosemary sprig, and serve.

Notes

*If all you can find is sweetened cranberry juice, use half the simple syrup quantity (or add to taste). 

**To make a pitcher of 8 servings, mix together in a pitcher: 1 1/2 cups tequila, 2 cups 100% unsweetened cranberry juice, 3/4 cup Cointreau, 3/4 cup lime juice, 3 tablespoons simple syrup. Add three handfuls of ice and stir until cold. Pour into individual glasses. 

  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Shaken
  • Cuisine: Cocktails

Keywords: Christmas margarita

More Christmas drinks

There are so many great cocktails to serve in the holiday season! Here are a few ideas:

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes