Drink This Now: 41 Warm Cocktails to Help You Survive Winter Woes
As much as we try to avoid the (very) cold, hard truth, winter is fast approaching. Although I love winter and the excitement it brings, frigid temperatures tend to leave me walled in, wearing five layers and huddled next to a space heater. But to Jack Frost I say two can play this game, so I'm equipping you with delicious and warm libations to take on whatever he throws your way this winter.
Batten down the hatches, the end is nigh! The weatherman just confirmed the blizzard to end all blizzards is headed your way. You may think you're going down, but at least go down fighting with a boozy peppermint patty hot cocoa in your hand.
Make This: Boozy Peppermint Patty Hot Cocoa
It's Christmas Vacation — only real life. You open your front door to find your own version of Cousin Eddie and his dilapidated RV parked in your driveway. "This is a surprise, Clark. This is just a real nice surprise." Have no fear, a coconut cream pie cocktail is here. This is when the cocktail portion of this survival guide becomes particularly relevant.
Make This: Coconut Cream Pie Cocktail
You were going to be productive and go Christmas shopping, but then your car's push start failed. Let's be honest, it's no longer worth the effort. Go ahead and pat your back, you gave it all you've got. It's now time to sip a hot ginger toddy. Never forget, it's the thought that counts.
Make This: Hot Ginger Toddy
You're faced with the arduous task of getting the mail. The seemingly endless 30 feet to the mailbox feels more like 30 miles. Congratulations, you deserve a medal or a warm apple pie cocktail. Enjoy sweet, sweet victory.
Make This: Positively Warm Apple Pie
Baby, It's Cold Outside
You're gearing up for the holidays and you hear the popular winter anthem "Baby It’s Cold Outside." You tell the rather pushy Johnny Mercer that he does indeed have a point and that's all the justification you need to sip a chai yai yai.
Make This: Chai Yai Yai
Bills, Bills, Bills
You're trying to save money on your electricity bill. Avoid dialing up the heat and sip on traditional mulled wine for a win-win situation. Although your house might feel like Antarctica, you can revel in knowing about all of those precious dollars you're saving and take a moment to look at the glass half full. Or just go ahead and top it off.
Make This: Traditional Mulled Wine
Need more reasons to sip winter cocktails? Look no further.
You Want to Hold on to Fall a Little Longer
The stores are stocked with Christmas trees and the radio's blaring holiday tunes, but you're not ready to give up on fall just yet. Make it last with this rum-spiked hot apple cider topped with cinnamon-sprinkled whipped cream.
You're Stuck at the Kids' Table Again
If you have to spend another year eating at a rickety card table in the company of your four-year-old cousin, you might as well enjoy an adult drink that will be the envy of your pint-sized companion. The Hot Peppermint Rod's bright peppermint stick and whipped cream topper evokes your childhood days, but a healthy helping of vodka makes it distinctly adult.
Your Brother Brings Five Extra Guests to Dinner
Oh, you didn't get the text he sent about extending an invitation to his new neighbors? It's OK. Just smile and pour a little bit more cranberry juice into the Hot Toddy; it's easy to stretch this mix of cranberry vodka, lemon juice, honey, bitters and cinnamon.
You Survived the Crowds at the Mall
Congratulations! You made it through the hordes of shoppers without having a meltdown. Reward yourself with a decadent dessert cocktail made from butterscotch schnapps, hot chocolate and amaretto.
You Have All-Day Guests
Whether you're having an open house or hosting all-day company, this centuries-old delight is a festive (and easy!) alternative to wine by the glass. Infuse Cabernet Sauvignon with sugar, cloves and cinnamon sticks, then top it off with port and brandy.
You Burned the Cookies
Burnt cookies happen to the best of us. After you get the next batch in the oven (hey, it can be refrigerated dough), mix up this coconut-chocolate drink. Enjoy it with one of the freshly baked treats.
You Just Built a Snowman
Knock the chill off outdoor holiday activities with this tasty homemade hot cocoa. For the adults, add an unexpected kick with Kahlua, light rum or silver tequila.
You're Already Tired of Christmas Songs
Questioning whether it really is "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year"? Put on some soothing Vince Guaraldi, then mix up a non-musical favorite from the 1960s: the Old Fashioned. Your faith in holiday tunes will soon be renewed.
You Ate Too Many Sweets
Cookies from coworkers, gold foil-wrapped Hanukkah gelt — it's easy to reach dessert overload during the holidays. Classic Vodka Gimlets, made with chilled vodka and fresh lime juice, are the perfect antidote.
You've Spent Seven Hours Hanging Christmas Lights
Light-up Santa and his tiny reindeer are safely on the roof, but you're worried your hands may still be frozen on Christmas Eve. The remedy? Steamy apple cider spiked with belly-warming bourbon will have you in a caroling mood in no time.
You Want to Help Friends Through the Season
Your Aunt Won't Stay Out of the Kitchen
Shouldn't you be using cinnamon in that pie? Where's the green bean casserole? Skip the pre-dinner interrogation this year by asking your relative to be in charge of the morning Bloody Mary station. She'll be so busy setting out the Tabasco sauce, celery spears and olives that she might forget to critique your every move.
You're Sitting Fireside With the Family
No holiday is complete without this traditional Ecuadorian family recipe for eggnog. Rumpope, pronounced "rom-poe-pay," uses eggs, condensed milk, peaches, vanilla extract and cinnamon to create a sweet, silky beverage.
Your Mother-In-Law Hates the Mashed Potatoes
They're lumpy. They're too creamy. They're all wrong. Take a deep breath, hand her the gravy, then hand her this festive holiday cocktail that draws inspiration from decadent caramel-apple pie.
You Want a Classic Holiday Drink
Gather your friends around the table for this truly traditional winter favorite. Heat brown sugar, milk and dark rum, then float butter on top for a decadent cocktail. Garnish with a pinch of ground nutmeg.
You Can't Decide: Pumpkin or Apple Pie?
It's the age-old question: Which pie should you serve this season? Make decision time a little easier with this fruity, dessert-inspired beverage: the Appleberry Pie. Who knows, you may just opt to make them both.
Someone Ate the Last Slice of Pie
When someone else calls dibs on your after-dessert treat, mix up this drinkable pumpkin pie replica. Combine vanilla vodka, pumpkin spice liqueur, Kahlua, butterscotch schnapps and half-and-half, then garnish with the perfect "crust" made of crushed graham crackers.
You Want to Make Non-Drinking Friends Feel Special
The non-drinkers in your life shouldn't be stuck with warm tap water or punch meant for the kids. Instead, try this modern and non-alcoholic take on the classic Cosmo. Dried hibiscus flower petals give the drink its holiday-perfect hue.
Your Great Uncle Won't Stop Talking About the Election
If you want to get through dessert without taking the political bait, you'll need to find some common ground. Something we can all agree on: The dirty martini is a year-round crowd pleaser that's just as popular today as it was during the swinging '60s. The only issue on which to vote: shaken or stirred.
His Team's Playing in a Bowl Game
Whether the game goes off with flying colors or ends in disaster, everyone will love this refreshing twist on the classic margarita. This twist? Beer. Serve in a frosty glass with a salted rim.
You're Up at Midnight to Shop the Sales
Camping out in front of the computer to score discounted Beats by Dre headphones feels so much cooler when you're sipping a sparkling water cocktail. Here's to you, bargain shopper!
You're Making Christmas Ornaments With the Squad
Toast to your crafty nature with a bit of bubbly punch. This sparkling cocktail for a crowd gets its festive hue from cranberry juice and a tart note from lemonade and fresh lime juice.
You Made It Through the Season
Congratulations! You've survived the shopping excursions, gift-wrapping marathons and holiday dinners. Toast to a brand new year with this champagne cocktail topped off with cognac, Grand Marnier and Campari.