Or Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and any other nonsecular holiday to get festive for! These seven cider cocktails came from our test bar and are now gifted to you just in time for you to regift them for the remaining days of the holiday season. Cheers!
This recipe, from a previous edition of Cidercraft Magazine, is at war against the seasons. With tequila, lime and grapefruit, it’ll make you think of summer, but then it finishes with festive rosemary simple syrup to bring you right back to a winter feel. The lesson here: this drink is fantastic any time of the year.
The Red Queen
A hot cocktail is the easiest and best way to get comfort out of your beverage during the colder months – finding a way to combine tea, cider and liquor is exactly what this drink does. The hibiscus tea and Peychaud’s bitters give massive aromatics while the Shacksbury Rosé cider and gin give it the kick you’re looking for.
One fruit that truly shines during the holiday season is the cranberry. Whether you’re utilizing its tart juices to make sauce for your turkey or pressing them into liquid for a drink, cranberries always find their way onto the holiday table. This cocktail, from Portland Cider Co. originally running in our sister publication Sip Northwest, is incredibly simple to make, yet offers layers of flavor that will keep your guests asking for another round.
It isn’t really fair to have this list without the descendent of the original holiday hot drink, wassail. Nothing beats the sweet smell of mulling spices in warm cider — especially of the fermented variation. This recipe features Whitewood Cider, liquor, citrus plus an array of spices.
Maple Bourbon Cider Flip
If you’ve ever had a proper whiskey sour with frothy egg whites floating atop the citrus-liquor goodness, you know how essential the addition of the egg is to the drink. A flip is similar to that, except with the entire egg. This recipe uses a light and tart cider from Castle Hill made with Pippin apples, bourbon of your choice, maple syrup and one organic raw egg.
This recipe comes courtesy of Seattle’s Skillet restaurant group. Luckily this one is just as easy to enjoy at home with bartender Chris Cinka’s simple recipe. The primary flavors in this tipple are going to come from the apple butter, which you can buy or make at home, chai concentrate and rum. Add in some milk for some body and a splash of lemon juice for depth and sip away. The unique thing about this cocktail is it can be served hot or cold and is equally delicious both ways.
Berry Merry Sour
This delightful cocktail features two products for the PNW powerhouse producer and hotel group McMenamins. The cocktail tastes like a whiskey sour, minus the egg whites, plus the apple and layered on the spiced flavor from McMenamins’ St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram. The cherry bitters complement the house-made blackberry cider perfectly.