Blended Scotch can be a very good buy, and it's great mixed with nutty sherry, spiced chai, and Angostura.
Punches tend to bring together an element of sour, a bit of sweetness, something boozy, and something weaker to carry the flavors through (and make sure people can drink cup after cup). That stretching element here is earthy, smoky Lapsang Souchong tea, which provides unusual depth without stealing the spotlight. The fact that you can (and should) do the majority of the work ahead of time is another holiday hosting bonus.
I feel pretty strongly that hot toddies should not be an excuse to just take whatever brown spirit you have around the house and pour some hot water on it. You can do better.
Fresh apple cider married with brown sugar, tart lemon, and rich Carpano Antica vermouth makes the ideal not-too-boozy fall drink. (Make this for Thanksgiving, and you can keep refilling glasses without worrying that Uncle Al is going to wind up under the coffee table.)
Cranberry cocktails don't get much respect. Perhaps that's because they tend to be pretty boring: just sweetened juice spiked with whatever booze is handy. While cranberries are one of fall's signature flavors, a cranberry-vodka or a Sea Breeze feels a little too summery. And a bit too casual for serving at the holiday dinner table. But this cranberry cocktail, enriched with sherry and a splash of rum, is a different beast altogether.
Apple juice is pretty weak in a cocktail, so instead, we reach for unfiltered apple cider and cook it down until concentrated. Then, the drink is spiked with apple brandy and hard cider for a punch of fall flavor.
We can do better than store-bought juices and food dye. Seasonal fruits—and even vegetables—are great additions to a classic daiquiri base. Chilling the booze overnight in the freezer helps keep your blender drink from getting overly diluted.
The best way to capture the sweet, slightly floral flavor of a cantaloupe for drinks to come is an easy jar-and-wait infusion. After you've strained the mix, it stays bright and fresh in the fridge for months: you'll be thanking me when all that's at the farmers market is a pile of potatoes.
In this easy 3-ingredient drink, elderflower liqueur amps up the floral side of bittersweet Suze.
This ballpark-inspired cocktail is mixed in advance, chilled to ice-cold, and tossed ever-so-casually to your buddy as he or she walks in the door. No stirring and straining, no fancy glasses, no fiddling with garnishes or even ice.
The slightly smoky side of Zucca makes it a perfect companion to Scotch in this delicious cocktail made fizzy with bitter lemon soda.
One of the best parts about late spring/early summer: berry season. One of the worst parts about berry season: picking seeds out of your teeth.
Sometimes a cocktail over ice just doesn't cut it. Sometimes, when the sun is blinding you, and you're shaking hot sand out of unusual places, you want something as close to frozen as possible. What you need, my friend, is a Frozen Negroni.
You don't have to be behind a fancy bar to play with transforming cocktails. This drink starts as a light, fruity, tiki-inspired cocktail, evolving into a richer, heavier, and more savory beverage, just through the process of melting ice.
Ever tried sumac in a drink? The tart spice, made from the dried fruit of the sumac plant, is great in the cherry syrup that flavors this rum-based cocktail.
Throw a nectarine on the grill and mix up this delicious cachaça cocktail.
The slightly floral, bitter flavor of grapefruit is put to good use in this cocktail, which gets a boost from Lillet Rosé. Mix it together the night before your guests arrive, when it's dark and the kitchen has cooled down a little, and nobody is strict about requiring pants.
This beer based cocktail steps up sangrita into a full fledged drink of its own. Even better: the recipe is meant to be mixed by the pitcher a few hours before your party starts.
A simple cocktail that lets an old ingredient shine.
A cocktail in a pitcher means more time outside relaxing and less time inside making drinks. Hibiscus gives this drink a tart and floral flavor and a gorgeous color.
If you haven't experimented much with mezcal, this cocktail, made with grilled mango and ancho chili peppers, is a great place to start.
Sweet tangelo is the sidekick in this tart-and-tangy shrub flavored with rosemary.
There seem to be two camps when it comes to Irish whiskey: those who absolutely love it, and those who don't. But this drink might just please everyone, and it's a great way to bring some Emerald Isle authenticity to your St. Patrick's Day party.
Using bitters as a base instead of an accent goes back awhile—look at the 1939 recipe for Charles H. Baker's Angostura Fizz and you'll also find bitters being measured out to a full ounce. In this take on a gin-based tiki drink, the spicy flavors of Angostura are right at home.
It may be twisting the knife to say so when half the country is trapped under ice, but here in Southern California we have a certain problem when February rolls around. It's the peak of citrus season. We're simply buried right now.
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