7 Christmas cocktails to tickle your tastebud tinsel

It’s Christmas time, and there’s no need to be afraid... because I have a bunch of Crimbo-themed cocktail recipes for you and I barely make any jokes about ‘getting into the festive spirits’.

So while you peruse the below suggestions, just spare a thought at this time of year for all those people who are still struggling to find inspiration for their Christmas cocktails, because they aren’t as fortunate as you are right now, reading this page.

Well, tonight thank God it’s them instead of you.

Last Christmas

3/4oz Spiced Clementine Gin
3/4oz Amaro Montenegro
3/4oz Disaronno Amaretto
3/4oz Clementine Juice

Method: Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with clementine peel.
The full title is ‘Last Christmas (I Gave You My Word)’ because this is a riff in the classic equal-parts drink The Last Word. This year, give it to someone special.


1.5oz Dry Gin
1oz Marks And Spencer Jaffa Cake Cocktail Liqueur
3/4oz Single Cream

Method: Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with grated chocolate.
Clicking on the link above will take you to a little more info about M&S’ pre-mixed cocktail. It’s just been substituted in here instead of chocolate liqueur in a classic Alexander.

Mince Pie Martini

1oz Gin
1oz Sweet Red Vermouth
3/4oz Mince Pie Simple Syrup*
1/4oz Dark Rum

Method: Muddle the mincemeat in a cocktail shaker, then add the other ingredients and shake with ice. Strain into a sugar-rimmed glass and garnish with a smoking cinnamon stick.
I’ve never been a huge mince pie fan, but in order to get into the true festive spirit of Christmas joy, I’ll tolerate them. And then I found a recipe on BBC Good Food for Mince Pie Syrup and decided to adapt the recipe for a Mince Pie Martini, just for something Christmassy to make/drink.

The result is a drink that I could sip all day. It’s sweet and fruity with a hint of Christmas spice and none of the undefinable qualities of a mince pie that I detest (I think it’s all the slime).

*To make the mincemeat syrup, put 100ml water, 100g caster sugar and 50g mincemeat in a pan and bring to the boil. Cool and strain though a muslin.

Marmalade And Cardamom Martini

2.5oz Vodka
1.5ozml Cointreau
4 Cardamom Pods
2 tbsp Seville Orange Marmalade
1 tbsp Lemon Juice

Method: Melt the marmalade in a pan and then whisk in the vodka. Crush the cardamom pods until they split and then add them to the mix. Warm it through for a few minutes and then leave off the heat to cool and infuse. Then strain and add the Cointreau and lemon juice. Then chill in the freezer. To serve, add some more marmalade at the bottom of the glass, pour in the cocktail and float an extra cardamom pod on top.
Another one taken from BBC Good Food, this is one of the very first cocktails I ever started making. It’s a drink that works all year round, but the orange and cardamom flavours here just work particular well for this season, so it has become something of a Crimbo staple in my house.

Pine Vodka Sour

2oz Pine-Infused Vodka
1oz Lemon Juice
1/2oz Sugar Syrup
3 dashes Peychauds Bitters
Egg white

Method: Shake all ingredients without ice, then add the ice and shake again. Strain into a martini glass and garnish with pine.
We’ve had our Christmas tree up since the beginning of December and it is now getting balder by the minute. Everywhere I look, there are pine needles. Everywhere. I’m starting to see them when I close my eyes at night.

So imagine my surprise when I made a simple Vodka Sour and then found out that the vodka somehow got pine-infused, presumably just from standing too near to our shedding tree.

And then I took a photo and when I looked at the image on my phone there seemed to be some mini trees and more pine as a garnish. Weird.

Gingerbread Daiquiri

2oz Gingerbread-infused Rum
3/4oz Lime Juice
3/4oz Orgeat Syrup

Method: Shake all ingredients with ice, strain into a coupe glass and garnish with a lime wedge and a strand of fairy lights to make it clear that this is a very festive drink.
Gingerbread is a Christmas flavour, right? How about lime? Either way, I had some gingerbread rum infusion left over and I figured it would make for a filler drink in my Christmas cocktails offering this year. I realise this isn’t exactly selling it to you.

It’s tasty though. Sweetness and spice undercutting the usual Daiquiri sourness, and the citrus/gingerbread combo somehow works as a weird flavourbomb.

Red Rumble

24 Redcurrants
2oz Aged Rum
1/2oz Sloe Gin
1/2oz Lemon Juice
1/2oz Cinnamon Syrup

Method: Muddle the redcurrants at the bottom of a shaker and then add the rest of the ingredients with ice and shake. Strain into a bauble, resting on a bed of fake snow within another glass, because of course..
This is a riff on a recipe for a Red Rum, created by Jason Scott at Edinburgh’s Oloroso in 2002. Then I put it in a bauble, because obviously.
Right. Good. Time to start on those NYE cocktails then.

Tags: Christmas, Calendar Dates

You might also like...