Holiday Drinks: Cocktails, Recipes, & More!

The holiday season is quickly approaching. This means that the flavors and featured drinks in rotation will soon be cycling through their yearly change-up.

 At De La Calle, we appreciate the constantly changing cycles of the seasons and love adjusting our tastes to match them. The holiday season is a perfect opportunity to try out new beverages that you may have missed the rest of the year. 

When people think of the holidays, usually large meals and buffet-style spreads litter the brain. However, what use is a good meal without something just as good to wash it down? The drinks enjoyed during the holiday season are key in emphasizing the spirits (no pun intended) of the season. 

Holiday drinks can be purely flavor-driven or pay homage to familial roots. The holidays are all about togetherness and camaraderie with friends, family, and all of our fellow people sharing this Earth. At De La Calle, we try to embody this sentiment in our time-tested tepache.  

Speaking of togetherness, this often means that the whole family, the entire neighborhood, from newborns to nanas, will be sharing in the festivities. For that reason, it is essential to have a variety of beverage options at any gathering this holiday season. 

To prepare for the cozy season, here are a few ideas for some holiday drinks. They will keep you warm and refreshed in times of tinsel and in-laws. Whether you love eggnog and hot buttered rum at holiday parties or you’re more interested in trying something unique with gin or vodka and creating your own Christmas drink, there’s something for everyone. 

As always, the best drink is one shared. No matter what you pour into your cup this holiday season, the most important ingredient is good company. 

Candy Cane Cranberry Apple Cider 

This first drink recipe is excellent throughout the holiday months. It has the quintessential fall flavor of apple cider, coupled with the wintery classic candy cane crunch. There’s not much flavor of peppermint, but we don’t think you’ll miss it one bit.  

This drink is versatile and delicious, and it’s non-alcoholic, so the entire family can enjoy it. Plus, the ingredients are super easy to get your hands on, especially this time of year. 

This candy cane cranberry apple cider is a fun, festive beverage you can share with the entire crew. Plus, its bright color and stylish garnish make it picture perfect. If you’re looking to booze up your sip a little, consider adding a splash of Champagne or even a shot of tequila to spice up this holiday cocktail. 

To make this holiday drink, you will need the following ingredients: 

  • Cranberry Juice 
  • Apple cider (sparkling if you prefer a bubbly drink) 
  • One thinly sliced apple 
  • Rosemary (for garnish) 
  • Candy Cane (for garnish) 

The cider is pretty adaptable to your preferences, so feel free to experiment with it. There is no wrong way to enjoy your candy cane creation. 

To make the drink, add the juice and cider to a pitcher or glass. Determine the ratio by your own taste. Two parts cranberry to one part cider usually does the trick. 

Then, thinly slice a whole apple. Make a hole in the center of the slice, and float it on top of the drink. Through the center hole, stick a classic red and white candy cane. 

For extra festivities, pop in a rosemary sprig next to the candy cane. This drink is great for any holiday gathering and works well as a punch too! Get creative with it and enjoy. 

Harvest Bourbon 

Perhaps the grown-ups are looking for a little relaxation this season. Enter the harvest bourbon cocktail! This cozy cocktail is sure to hit the spot on a chilly holiday eve. 

The standout element in this holiday beverage is the fruity flavors. The holidays can feel heavy, be it from the full bellies or the barrage of creamy cocktails that are so popular during the season (yes, we’re talking about hot chocolate and Christmas cookie martinis). 

This drink gives us a little break from the onslaught of minty and creamy liqueurs and infuses a fruity refresher into the drink menu at any holiday gathering. It is cozy without being smothering. You could also easily swap out the cranberry for pomegranate juice and garnish with a few pomegranate seeds.  

To make this cocktail, you will need the following ingredients at the ready in your bar cart:

  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 cup of granulated sugar 
  • 5 Tbsp (2.5 oz) Bourbon 
  • 5 Tbsp (2.5 oz) Sparkling cranberry juice
  • 1 Cherry, for garnish
  • 1 orange peel for garnish

First, create your simple syrup. To do this, add water and sugar to the saucepan and heat it on low. Stir the mixture until all of the sugar has dissolved. Set aside one tablespoon for the cocktail. 

Next, add all of your liquids into the glass of your choice. Mix it all up to combine. Garnish the drink with a cherry and orange peel, and you have done it! 

Tepache 

We would be remiss not to mention an excellent holiday refresher, one that is near and dear to our hearts: tepache! 

Tepache is a fermented drink made from pineapple peels.

To make tepache, you will need the following ingredients: 

  • Peels of 1 pineapple 
  • 1 cup sugar 
  • Water 
  • Cloves 
  • Cinnamon Sticks (for garnish or taste) 

Let’s get to fermenting! Begin by washing your pineapple peels well. Then obtain a large pitcher and fill it with water. Add in the peels. 

Next, add in the sugar. Place the cloves and cinnamon sticks in the pitcher, and mix it all up to combine. 

Now, cover the pitcher loosely with a cheesecloth. Allow it to sit out for about 24 hours. When you come back to it, remove the white foam that accumulated. 

Serve the drink over ice and garnish with a slice of pineapple or cinnamon stick. Tepache is a refreshing, festive drink, fun for everyone in the neighborhood to try out. 

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Happy Holidays 

These are just a few ways to kickstart your holiday season. These drinks can also act as inspiration for your very own Christmas cocktail, mocktail, or tepache creations. 

When the temperatures get colder, we all move inside together. These drinks are designed to make your holidays a time of festivities and togetherness instead of stress.  

No matter what drink is in your cup, every beverage tastes better when it is shared with those you love. That is what the holiday season is all about. 


Sources: 

Nonalcoholic Definition of Nonalcoholic | Merriam-Webster

What's the Difference Between Bourbon and Whiskey? | Food & Wine 

Yeast, Fermentation, Beer, Wine | Learn Science at Scitable | Nature 

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