written by Jess Napier — Owner, Bramblewood Bar
Try Bramblewood Bar’s favorite holiday cocktails to add some extra “cheer” to your holiday celebration!
2020 – what a year. At a time when we’re supposed to be surrounded by all our loved ones toasting to the year and looking ahead at what’s to come, it’s likely that this holiday season is going to feel a lot less celebratory. But — and hear me out — there’s still some good that can come out of smaller gatherings and low-key nights in. Whether you’re prepping for a Christmas Day brunch for 1 or New Year’s Eve for you and your “pod”, there are so many ways to make your holiday drinks festive and filled with joy.
FOCUS ON THE DETAILS.
A smaller guest count means more time to focus on the small details of your celebration. Maybe that means you have some more time at home to prepare really beautiful garnishes to go on your drinks (like the delicious chocolate cold foam recipe below – YUM) or maybe it means you have time to prepare some fun ice spheres for your punch bowl before your gathering begins. Thinking of the little details in your bar lets your guests know you care about making them feel loved and cared for.
SPEND A LITTLE, SAVE A LITTLE.
You do not, I repeat DO NOT, need to splurge on every ingredient to have a delicious cocktail. Splurge on the most important ingredient (typically the biggest portion in a given cocktail) and save on the others. If I’m making a French 75, you had better believe I am getting the best gin I can get my hands on and have no problem topping it with a $10 bottle of Prosecco. Having a great bar doesn’t have to mean top-shelf everything. And don’t forget to opt for beer and spirits from local brewers, distillers, and winemakers—it’s a wonderful way to support local businesses through the holidays.
A great way to get your guests involved in their bar experience is to set up a DIY drink station with a few different liquor choices, light mixers like soda water, and an array of homemade syrups, like the mint simple syrup recipe below. You can make simple syrups out of almost any fruit or herb by lightly simmering the fruit/herb of choice with equal parts water and sugar. Strain out the fruit/herb and voilà — you’ve got yourself a homemade simple syrup that can kick any cocktail or mocktail up a notch.
CRANBERRY COCONUT MARGARITA
She’s sweet and creamy, with just the right amount of tart. Leave out the booze and this one is a perfect mocktail for non-drinkers and kiddos.
- Prepare rocks glass with rim dipped in frosting and coconut flakes
- In a shaker, combine:
- 2 oz tequila
- 2 oz cranberry juice
- 1 oz lime juice
- 1.5 oz cream of coconut
- Shake until all ingredients are combined and the liquid is a creamy texture
- Add ice to your prepared glass
- Strain drink into glass
- Top with cranberries
MINT MOCHA MARTINI with CHOCOLATE COLD FOAM
Whether you need an extra dose of caffeine to get through a late-night wrapping session or you need a boost to get through Christmas morning, this martini speaks to the inner barista in all of us.
- In a shaker combine:
- 2 oz chocolate vodka (we like whipped cream flavored, too!)
- 1 oz mint simple syrup (instructions below)
- 1 shot of espresso or 3 oz cold brew coffee
- Shake until all ingredients are combined
- Strain into martini or coupe glass
- Top with chocolate cold foam
- Garnish with mint
Mint Simple Syrup
- In a small saucepan combine:
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- ¼ cup mint leaves
- Very lightly simmer until sugar has dissolved (about 3-5 minutes), mixing intermittently
- Strain mint from syrup
- Store syrup in airtight glass jar or bottle
- Use in coffee, tea, cocktails, and hot chocolate!
Chocolate Cold Foam
- In an electric frother (if you have a cold froth setting) or small bowl with a hand frother, combine:
- 3 Tbsp milk
- 1 Tbsp heavy cream
- 1 Tbsp chocolate (feel free to keep adding until the foam reaches your desired sweetness)
- Froth it up and pour over your cocktail or cup of coffee
About Bramblewood Bar
Bramblewood Bar is a mobile bar service based out of Toledo, Ohio that specializes in personalized craft beverage experiences for weddings and events. We are family owned and operated and our goal is to have every guest at your event leave feeling like family. We’re a mobile bar, but we have deep roots and believe in supporting local businesses while making every event unique to the host. Drop us a line about your upcoming event at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow @bramblewoodbar.