The Holiday season may be over, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy winter cocktails during the next few months. Winter is a time for cocooning and home entertaining – if you have guests over, it’s always great to have a few delicious winter cocktails that you can prepare.
So you may have received a fancy bar tool set with everything you need to make cocktails. Or you were lucky to receive a bottle of Macallan whisky. You will definitely want to sip it, but did you know you can make some pretty fancy cocktails with Scotches too? Wines are also a great ingredient to add to winter cocktails and tequila doesn’t have to be relegated to summer margaritas.
Perhaps your New Year’s resolution is to master a few new classy yet fun drinks to add to your repertoire. I’ve pulled together a few delicious winter cocktails that are fairly easy to make and use some of the best brands that are available at the LCBO.
This wine-based cocktail with a hint of beer blends rich flavours for a delicious winter drink.
1/2 oz lemon
1-1/4 oz Epica Red wine
1-1/2 oz cranberry juice
1/2 oz agave syrup
1 oz beer
Cinnamon stick, grated for garnish
In a shaker, add all ingredients except the beer over ice. Shake and strain into a chilled champagne coupe. Top with beer and grate cinnamon on top for garnish.
Makes one serving.
Epica Red wine is a Chilean dry wine available at the LCBO, $13.95
Herradura Espresso Cocktail
This chilled coffee drink recipe is like drinking your dessert. Although it is best made with the Herradura Anejo (which we unfortunately don’t have at the LCBO), however it can also be made with the Herradura Reposado.
1-1/2 oz Herradura Reposado tequila
1/2 oz coffee liqueur
1-1/2 oz espresso
1/2 oz simple syrup
1-1/2 oz heavy cream
3 coffee beans, garnish or cinnamon stick
Place all ingredients except the heavy cream in a cocktail shaker filled with cubed ice. Shake and strain into a ice filled, chilled coupe glass. In a separate shaker, shake the heavy cream with cubed ice – pour carefully over a bar spoon to layer the cream over the coffee mixture. Garnish with three coffee beans or cinnamon stick.
Makes one serving.
Herradura Reposado Tequila is available at the LCBO at $69.95.
The Macallan Old Fashioned
This twist on an Old Fashioned is decadent – if you happen to have received a bottle of The Macallan Amber for Christmas, and want to impress, this winter cocktail recipe is the one to make.
1-3/4 oz The Macallan Amber
1/4 oz 5 spices syrup* (can be replaced by simple syrup)
4 drops of Bob’s Chocolate bitters (Available at BYOB: Cocktail Emporium)
Assemble all of the ingredients, except the twist, in a mixing glass. Add ice and stir. Strain over a big cube of ice in an Old Fashioned glass. Twist the orange twist to lightly release a spray of the natural orange oils over the cocktail and drop into the glass.
*5 spices syrup recipe: In a pot, mix 1 cup of granulated sugar with 1 cup of water. Heat over medium heat and stir until all sugar is dissolved (do not bring to a boil). Turn off the heat and add 1 tablespoon each of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, star anise, as well as the beans of 1 vanilla pod. Cover pot and let infuse for 30 minutes. Strain and bottle. Cool before use.
The Macallan Amber is available at the LCBO at $99.95.
The Golden Honey Sour
This cocktail is a twist on the traditional Whisky Sour – once you’ve mastered it, you can take it up a notch with Macallan Gold.
1-1/2 oz The Macallan Gold
1 oz fresh pressed lemon juice
3/4 oz honey syrup* (can be replaced by simple syrup)
1 egg white
Assemble all of the ingredients in a shaker. Dry shake for 30 to 45 seconds
without ice. Add ice to shaker and hard shake for another 30 seconds. Fine strain into a cocktail coupe.
*Honey syrup: In a pot, mix equal parts honey and water. Stir over medium heat until honey is dissolved (do not bring to a boil). Bottle and cool before use.
The Macallan Gold (750 mL) is available at the LCBO at $74.95.
The Rob Burns
This twist on a Rob Roy can be used for Robbie Burns celebrations on January 25, 2016.
1-3/4 oz The Macallan Gold
1-1/4 oz sweet vermouth
1 barspoon Maraschino liqueur (Luxardo)
4 dashes of Cherry Bark Vanilla bitters (Available at BYOB: Cocktail Emporium)
Assemble all of the ingredients, except the twist, in a mixing glass. Add ice
and stir. Strain and serve up with no ice in a Nick & Nora glass or cocktail coupe. Express the orange twist over the cocktail and discard it. Use a separate orange twist as garnish if desired.
For information about how you can stock up your bar cart or home bar, check out my list of resources for cocktail supplies and bar tools.
What are your favourite winter cocktails? What is your favourite base alcohol for drinks? Whisky, vodka, tequila…?