The nine best Christmas cocktails
A festive party is nothing without gallons of booze, and that's a fact. If you're in need of some easy cocktail recipes, Mumsnetters have you covered. Whether you're filling a cocktail bowl or a single glass by the fire, these winter drinks will carry you through the festive season (and every family argument)
1. Wintry Pimm's
Thought that Pimm's was for summer alone? Think again. For this delightfully fruity concoction, all you need is:
- Some Pimm's
- Some brandy
- Apple juice
- Two cinnamon sticks
- Sliced apple and orange
- A couple handfulls of ice
“Get a big jug and fill it with Pimms/Jeeves, mixed with whatever brandy is left over from feeding the Christmas cake plus cloudy apple juice, cinnamon sticks and sliced apple and orange. You can serve it warm, but I prefer it cold with ice. It's a delicious not-too-alcoholic Christmas drink (depending on how much brandy you put in!)”
2. Cinnamon-dusted hot cider
Love yourself a hot apple cider? A light dusting of cinnamon will make it even more Christmassy – especially if you're cradling it in front of the fire. Simply chuck the following into a pan:
- Four teaspoons of honey
- Orange peel
Gently heat, stirring occasionally, for around 15 minutes. Strain it and serve, then apply your dusting of cinnamon.
“You could also heat your cider with a (very) generous slug of rum, sugar to taste and served with thin slices of apples, before dusting it with cinnamon. It's lovely and warming.”
What do I need to make a cocktail?
Equipment isn't always a necessity, but a cocktail making set does help to mix things up. This one, the VonShef Graphite Boston Cocktail Making Set (£18.99) is on the cheaper end of the scale and has everything you'd need – including a shaker, strainer, jigger, muddler and spoon.
One Mumsnetter also suggested the Bar@drinkstuff White Plastic Ice Crusher (£11.99). “Especially good if you're making mojitos,” they pointed out.
If you're after some swanky cocktail glasses too, Bar@drinkstuff also do a set of six for £14.99, and will make you feel all kinds of Carrie Bradshaw.
3. Slow cooker mulled wine
It may sound a bit odd, but it's actually kind of genius. Heating your mulled wine slowly means that there's no chance of boiling it, and it'll release that rich, festive scent all day/night long. Here's what you need:
- Red wine
- Brandy / Cointreau
- Cinnamon sticks
- Three star anise
- Four cloves
- 120g of caster sugar
- Orange juice
- Orange slices
- Maple syrup for some (optional) added sweetness
“I keep a vat of mulled wine in the slow cooker through the season – complete with sugar, brandy, oranges, lemons, cloves, cinnamon, star anise, and red wine. Smells divine and keeps warm for around three days!”
4. White Russian
Ah, a classic. Simply mix vodka, Kahlúa and cream (or milk), and – boom – you have a milkshake in a glass.
“A White Russian is my signature festive drink – just be warned! They're extremely quaffable.” Alice, MNHQ.
Got a sweet tooth? Originating from Italy, this Christmas drink is a dessert in a glass. You'll need:
- Two scoops of lemon sorbet
And that's it! Pour into a champagne flute and enjoy.
“I like Prosecco poured over lemon sorbet, with a twist of lemon rind and some mint on the top.”
6. Whisky Mac
After something a little different? This easy Christmas combines Scotch whiskey with green ginger wine (nope, we'd never heard of that either). You could even pop in a candy cane if you want to go fully festive – these mini ones from Bonds of London (£3.99) will do the trick.
“Whisky Mac – whisky and green ginger wine – is my favourite Christmas tipple for cosy nights under the fairy lights.”
7. Amaretto-cranberry Kiss
Fruity and smooth, the addition of amaretto makes this one festive cocktail. You'll need:
- Cranberry juice
- Peeled, segmented clementines
- Orange juice
Mix all of the above and pop into the fridge until serving.
“Amaretto with cranberry juice is the absolute taste of Christmas as far as I am concerned.”
The ultimate Christmas party drink, a sloegasm combines sloe gin with champagne, prosecco or sparkling wine. Because what's better than alcohol at Christmas? More alcohol.
“I love a Sloegasm: sloe gin (homemade) topped up with Prosecco or Champagne. It's delicious and very festive.”
Stuck for which gin to buy? There's no expert in gin like a Mumsnetter, and they're staunch fans of Lidl's Hortus Artisan London Dry Gin (£15.99). “Delicious and very good value for money,” one sagely nodded.
Another popular choice is the delicate, floral Edinburgh Gin (£20). “I really like it. It tastes special,” another Mumsnetter said, hiccoughing.
9. Amaretto sour
Easy to make and oh-so-tasty for the holiday season, all you need is:
- 120ml of lemon juice
- Maraschino cherries
- 1 egg white
“Perfect for a warming wintry drink, and easy to pull together if you're entertaining.” Hannah, MNHQ.
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