The holiday season is many things; a time for reflection, a time for gratitude, a time to share with loved ones, and, of course, a time for celebrating. And yes, by celebrating we mean drinking. It’s the real “reason for the season.” Here are our favorite holiday drinks to help you drink like a man this holiday season, because no matter how tough this year was, there’s always something to toast to (just make sure there’s something tasty in your glass). Whether you’re looking to add a new tradition to your family gathering or just looking to prep yourself for the onslaught to come, we’ve got you covered.
4 Great Holiday Bourbon Drinks
Whether you’re shopping for a gift, stocking up your own bar, or looking to sauce up your family dinner with a little holiday cheer, the world of brown stuff has never been more welcoming. From budget mixers to special-occasion sippers, we’ve selected a few of our favorites perfect for your holiday season (or, any season really).
1. The Holiday Daily Driver
Elijah Craig Small Batch ($25) is good enough to drink on it’s own but not so expensive that you’d feel ashamed to mix it into an old fashioned or manhattan. There are few better bang-for-your-buck bourbon’s than this offering from Sir Craig.
2. The Gift That Keeps Giving
Eagle Rare 10 Year – ($35-ish) is an exceptional bottle of whiskey at a very affordable price. This heavy hitter makes the perfect gift as it’s a bit less well-known and drinks better than bottles two and three times the cost. Perfect for your significant other’s discerning dad, a worthy brother or sister, or as a well-deserved gift for yourself.
3. Remarkable Rye
Michter’s Straight Rye ($45) is a damn good whiskey, plain and simple. On it’s own the spice and heat will warm you up from the inside out and it will take your Manhattan to a whole new stratosphere. This rye is also a great gift for that bourbon-loving buddy or family member if you want to give ‘em something different that will blow their mind.
4. Bring Out The Big Guns
Sometimes you gotta bring out the big guns and Blanton’s Single Barrel – ($70) is it. Amazingly sweet, spicy, and smooth, this is one bourbon you may not want to share, and you probably deserve it.
3 Best Holiday Beers
The holidays always reward us with great craft brews. These beers are perfect for afternoons indoors or as a refreshing reward after a hard day of shopping (even if it’s just online shopping).
1. Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale
A holiday standby, this hoppy, malty IPA is always at the top of our wishlist every Christmas. Bonus: The perfect shower beer to pair with our Grapefruit IPA soap.
2. Avery Brewing Old Jubilation
While many holiday beers are heavy on the spice, this easy drinker from Avery is light and refreshing while still feeling right for the season. Bonus: it comes in easily-chuggable cans too.
3. Deschutes Jubelale
A rich brown ale with spice that’s perfect for an easy chair in front of a roaring fire (bear skin rug optional).
Easiest Holiday Punch Recipes Ever
Real talk, do you really enjoy eggnog? Or is it just a cursory obligation to drink it just because someone in your family makes it every year? The majority of the time it’s too heavy, too boozy, and makes you queasy after one sip.
So this year, we’re pushing for the end of eggnog’s reign of holiday terror and endorsing something new: Holiday Punch. To be clear, this isn’t a bowl of fruit punch with a ton of alcohol dumped in (though that sounds great too). Holiday punch can be any type of fruit concoction, served warm (like spiced apple cider or wine) or cold (fruit juices and chopped fruit) and in, you guessed it, a large punch bowl.
The options for customization are endless, which make it both tasty and easy to make. Plus, you literally just dump it all in there, maybe top it with something fizzy, and give it a stir. It’s impossible to screw up. So, if you’re looking to impress (and possibly alienate) your friends and family members, give one of these easy recipes a shot:
Two Minute Spiked Cider
Ok, when we say easy, we mean easy. No matter how incompetent you are in the kitchen, you can make this.
- Instant Apple Cider Drink Mix
- Bourbon (see our list of favorites above)
- Optional: diced apples
- Boil water
- Add the apple cider mix
- Take off heat, add some bourbon
- Add in some apple chunks for extra points to make it look like this took a lot of effort (no one will ever know)
Just eyeball your ratio of apple cider to bourbon – this isn’t an exact science people. Squatch tip- save some of the instant mix so you can even it out if you make it too bourbon-y.
This one’s a little fancier and a little more effort, but still super easy (and you get to set it on fire at the end, so it’s worth it).
- 3 bottles light-bodied red wine like pinot noir
- 1 (750-ml) bottle light rum
- 1⁄2 cup sugar
- 1 orange thinly sliced, seeds removed
- 1 lemon, thinly sliced, seeds removed
- In a large pot, bring red wine and rum to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low
- Stir in the sugar along with the orange and lemon slices. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Transfer the punch to a heavy heatproof bowl. (A non-heatproof bowl may crack.)
- Now the fun part – dip a small metal ladle into the hot punch; touch a lit match to the surface of the punch that’s in the ladle to ignite it. Pour the flaming punch back into the bowl. Serve immediately so that the punch remains lit in the glass.