Five Fresh, Fun and Festive Recipes For The Holidays

Cranberry Swizzle Cocktail

The holiday season is peaking, and your guests are likely looking for a way to unwind after all the shopping and stressing. Here are five recipes to help you help them summon the holiday spirit.

Cranberry Swizzle 
(shown atop)
2 oz. Rittenhouse rye whiskey
1 oz. Cranberry liqueur
½ oz. Maple syrup
Angostura bitters

Lightly muddle mint to express the oils. Fill glass with crushed pebble ice an inch to the rim. Build all ingredients except for the bitters in a stainless steel tin. Use a swizzle stick to mix. Top the class with crushed ice and three dashes of Angostura bitters. Garnish with dried cranberries and mint, and dust powdered sugar on top.


Carolina Gonzalez, bar manager of WoodWind in Chicago, created this recipe.

Under Bright Blinking Lights

Under Bright Blinking Lights
1 ½ oz. Espalon Reposado Tequila
½ oz. Punt E Mes 
½ oz. Spiced cranberry agave
¾ oz. Lime juice
2 dashes Angostura bitters


Combine ingredients and shake. Pour into goblet glass and garnish with lime wheel.

The Sir Francis Drake Bar Team and John Stanton, Kimpton’s West Coast manager of bars, created this recipe for Lizzie’s Starlight in San Francisco.

Polar Bear Club

Polar Bear Club
(makes two)
2 oz. Avua Prata cachaça
1 oz. Svol Danish aquavit
½ oz. Giffard Banane du Brasil
½ oz. Clement Mahina Coconut Rhum
1 ½ oz. Coconut milk (1 can)
1½ oz. Coco Lopez (1 can) 
1 oz. Lime juice
2 oz. Pineapple juice
1 cup Crushed or pebble ice

Build ingredients in blender, then blend on high for 1 minute. Add more ice for preferred consistency. Pour carefully into empty honey bear jar with a ribbon “scarf” tied around its neck.

Sunday Hospitality’s bar director Brian Evans created this recipe for the bar pop-up SNOWday In Brooklyn.

Spice and Everything Nice
1 oz. Mezcal
¾ oz. Ancho Reyes chile liqueur
½ oz. Apple juice
½ oz. Plum wine
Egg white

Combine ingredients and shake. Serve in a coupe.

Zachary Gross, beverage director of Sen Sakana in New York, created this recipe.

Peppermint Bark Martini

Peppermint Bark Martini
Serves four 
3 oz. Smirnoff Peppermint Twist vodka
3 oz. Smirnoff Vanilla vodka
3 oz. Good quality white chocolate 
5 tbs. Granulated sugar 
6 oz. Heavy cream 
6 oz. Whole milk 
2 tsp. Vanilla extract 

Roughly chop white chocolate and place in a large heat-proof bowl. Add sugar, heavy cream, and whole milk to a saucepan. Heat over medium low heat until the mixture is hot to touch—do not allow the mixture to boil. 

Pour the hot milk mixture over the chocolate and stir until the chocolate is completely melted and the mixture is smooth. Allow the mixture to cool completely. Stir in the vanilla extract, and vodkas.  

To serve, add four ounces of the homemade liqueur to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously for 30 seconds. Pour the mixture into a peppermint-rimmed Martini glass.

The mixologists at Smirnoff created this recipe.