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Christmas cocktails

christmas cocktails

Make your Christmas that little bit merrier with an assortment of delicious festive drinks. Round off your Christmas lunch with an orange coffee liqueur or whip up a champagne cocktail ahead of New Year's Eve. Find your perfect holiday tipple with these great recipes. You could even try something a bit exotic while you're at it and, if you're feeling creative, mix up your own and adding it to our recipe cupboard here.


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Shaken or stirred?

 

Champagne Cocktail

Serves 1

champagne cocktail

Ingredients

  • ½ measure brandy
  • ½ measure Cointreau
  • Champagne
  • Orange
  • Lemon

 

Method

Pour the brandy and Cointreau into a glass over a sugar lump.

Top up with champagne and garnish with orange and lemon. 

 

 

Grapparita

 Serves 1

 

Ingredients

  • 2 shots Grappa di Moscato
  • 1 shot Luxardo Limoncello liqueur
  • 1 shot freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ½ fresh egg white
  • Lime

 

Method

Shake all ingredients with ice and fine strain into a chilled glass.

Garnish with a lime wedge. 

 

Clover Club

Serves 1

 Clover Club cocktail

Ingredients

  • 1 shot gin
  • Lemon juice
  • Raspberry syrup (or grenadine)
  • 1 egg white

 

Method

Dry shake the ingredients to emulsify, add the ice, shake and serve straight up.

Add some lemon juice and you're good to go.

 

 

Suffering Bastard

Serves 1

 

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp Angostura Bitters
  • 2 measures gin
  • 1½ measure brandy
  • ½ measure lime juice 
  • 1 tsp sugar syrup (or caster sugar if you don't have sugar syrup
  • Ginger beer
  • Mint
  • Lime
  • Cucumber

 

Method

Pour the Angostura Bitters into a tumbler, swirl it around to coat and pour away the excess.

Half fill the glass with cracked ice, add the gin, brandy, lime juice and sugar syrup (or caster sugar) and stir well to mix.

Top up with ginger beer and decorate with a sprig of mint and a slice lime and cucumber. 

 

 

Orange Coffee Liqueur

Serves as many as your bottle allows

Orange coffee liqueur

Ingredients

  • Bottle of vodka
  • 300g caster sugar
  • A large orange
  • 40 coffee beans

 

Method

Put the sugar and vodka in a wide-necked preserving jar with a close fitting lid.

Give it a stir every time you walk past it over a day or so until the sugar has dissolved.

With a small sharp knife, make 40 cuts in the washed and dried orange. Push a whole coffee bean into each cut and then place it in the vodka.

Pick up the jar and swirl the contents at least once a day for 2 weeks. Over the next 2 weeks, swirl when you remember. It will be fabulous after 4 weeks, and will improve daily thereafter.

Remove the orange carefully and leave to drain through a sieve, so that as much liqueur as possible is returned to the bulk before bottling. Be careful not to squeeze the orange at this stage as it will make your liqueur look very cloudy.

Once your lovely clear liqueur is bottled, squeeze the life out of the orange and drink the cloudy liqueur straight away.

 

Gransnetters say:

"My father always used to make a coffee laced with rum after we got back from midnight mass. After all that fasting and abstaining in Advent, it had an amazing effect!" 
 

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Straight up 

 

Tia Maria

Tia Maria

Usually served at room temperature.

"I only drink Tia Maria at Christmas - I never touch it at other times, but it's lovely after Christmas pudding especially when I can slide down in my chair and have a little snooze after all the dashing about!"

 

Sloe Gin

Serves as many as your bottle allows

sloe gin

Ingredients

  • 1 bottle of gin
  • 1 empty bottle the same size as your gin bottle
  • Sloes
  • Sugar

 

Method

Pick your sloes when they are nice and purple, but before they become overripe and squishy.

Wash the sloes, put them in a bown and pierce them to allow the juice to come out. The accepted method is to pierce each piece of fruit with a darning needle, but an easier technique is to plunge a carving fork into the bowlful and piece several in one go.

Pour the gin into a jug. Fill both empty bottles with fruit and sugar (approximately equal amounts or to taste) and top up with gin. If any gin is left over, drink it! Cap, shake well, and put away for a month, shaking every week or so, or when you remember.

Handy hint: If you don't like sloes bobbing against your lips, pour it through a strainer into the glass. The longer you can leave it, the better it becomes.

 

Baileys

"If you have it in a mug you can pretend it's cold coffee if the vicar pops in!"

 

Bucks Fizz

"The orange juice counts as one of my five a day!"

 

Mulled Wine

"With added brandy, of course...or brandy and Babycham!" 

 

Going the extra mile?

eggnog

If you're putting on a fancy soirée, you might want to make an impression by serving up your cocktail menu with a bit of pizzazz. Need a helping hand? Here are some top tips:

 

  • Chill your cocktail glasses before using them
  • Don't dilute your cocktails with too much ice
  • Add extra details such as fruit ribbons, cocktail stirrers or flowers

 

Gransnetters say:

"Rub the sugar lump over the outside of an orange to collect some of the volatile oil before you put it into the glass. And it's always a good idea to chill cocktail glasses before using them. Diluting cocktails with ice is not the plan." 

"Prosecco with hibiscus flower in the bottom of glass looks nice and gives a different slant on apéritif."  

And if you're looking for teetotal tipples to whip up this Christmas, visit our non-alcoholic drinks and cocktails page.

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Images: Shutterstock

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