The tree is trimmed, the gifts are wrapped, and the playlist is set to holiday music. But before you get to merrymaking, you should check one more task off your list: your drink menu. Sure, the food usually takes center stage, but you would do your guests a disservice without putting the same care and attention into the drink menu as you did the food menu.
There are plenty of festive and creative drink ideas that are sure to impress your guests. Traditional choices like eggnog are great, but there are many other creative options as well. Drinks (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic) that take advantage of seasonal ingredients are a natural choice, as are those that are warm and comforting. Your local bar service can help you come up with a menu designed just for you—one that is as unique as your event. Following are some ideas.
1. Seasonal Sour
Whiskey, lemon, and sugar make up a traditional whiskey sour, but using cranberry and orange, maple and brown sugar, or apple cider can give it a seasonal twist. An infused simple syrup with cinnamon sticks, orange peels, and ginger can add to the festive flavor.
2. Winter Mojito
The classic Cuban cocktail made from rum, lime, and mint is typically associated with island vibes and warm summer days. But a winter version with dark rum and spices such as nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon is reminiscent of a gingerbread cookie, especially when garnished with candied ginger.
3. Holiday Martini
Martinis come in all varieties, from the classic dirty martini to the modern vodka lemon drop. There are many holiday-inspired spins as well. The pumpkin pie martini uses vanilla vodka, pumpkin pie spice, and cream, while the peppermint martini has peppermint schnapps, crème de cacao, and a candy cane garnish.
4. Hot Toddy
The traditional hot toddy—hot water, honey, whiskey, and lemon—is a soothing cold-weather drink. Cinnamon-flavored whiskey, caramel vodka, or hot apple cider topped with a dried apple and a drizzle of caramel gives it a unique spin and hot tea can be used instead for a non-alcoholic version.
5. White Russian
Made from vodka, cream, and coffee liqueur, a White Russian is a rich drink popular in the winter. Seasonal varieties include a version made from chai tea and vanilla garnished with star anise, a pumpkin spice variety, or a salted caramel version with whipped cream.
6. Celebratory Punch
Punch is an easy way to serve a crowd at your holiday event. A basic non-alcoholic version has a blend of fruit juices (pomegranate, orange, and cranberry are great for the holidays) with lemon-lime soda for fizz. Or, you can try a mixture of blood orange juice, rosemary simple syrup, and fresh ginger mixed with prosecco.
7. Hot Chocolate
Nothing warms the soul more than a rich, creamy mug of hot chocolate. Skip the powder packets and instead use real cocoa, sugar, and milk. Amp up the flavors with chili powder and cinnamon, orange juice or zest, or pumpkin spice. Marshmallow fluff and a graham cracker rim transform it into s’mores hot chocolate!
Contact Randy Peters Catering
If you’re looking for unique drink ideas for your holiday event but want someone else to do the heavy lifting, consider a local bar service. The professionals at Randy Peters Catering can design a beverage menu that is sure to impress your guests while showing off your individual taste. Give us a call today at (916) 726-2339 or email us and experience excellence!