Updated: Dec 28, 2020
Are you feeling holly and jolly yet? Spruce up your holidays with one of these festival cocktail recipes from around the world. Yes, Christmas is going to be a little different this year but that doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy some Christmas tipple. Festive lights and cozy throws are all present and in this round-up of the best festival drinks. All of these drinks will complement your Christmas dinner menu and holiday dessert spread too. It's time to update your drink list with these delicious cocktails, so without further ado:
Chocolat chaud - Hot Chocolate
A timeless classic Hot chocolate can be prepared in many different ways – sweet and milky, dark and rich, or even flavored with vanilla or peppermint. Still, the Parisians keep it classic with what they call "Chocolat Chaud à l'Ancienne," or old-fashioned hot chocolate. The consistency of a molten chocolate bar that is meant to be sipped slowly and savored. When in Paris you should treat yourself to a cup of chocolate chaud at Un Dimanche à Paris. Parisian hot chocolate is usually made with milk rather than cream and luxurious richness from top-quality chocolate. This cup of hot chocolate is flavorful but not over-the-top. The recipe can be found here by French Cooking Academy.
The Birthplace of Rum
Barbados perfected the drink on its sugarcane plantations during the 17th century. It remains a cornerstone of the island's social life. Stop by any of the more than 1,500 roadside bars on the island for a taste—or, better yet, take a rum tour in a local distillery like Mount Gay Distilleries. It was founded in 1703, and it's the world's oldest rum brand. Barbados is renowned as the birthplace of rum and still widely produced on the island today using traditional local methods. A recipe can be found here on the islands' website. When on the island, treat yourself to a conventional Barbados Rum classic and Caribbean-inflected Italian cuisine at Primo Bar & Bistro.
Cola de Mono
This drink is both an alcoholic beverage and a sweet dessert to enjoy during the season. The drink's evaluation isn't sure, but the story is that it was created by accident for Pedro Montt, who was the president of Chile from 1906 to 1910. Cola de Mono is also known as "monkey's tail" for no apparent reason. The cocktail tastes best served in the traditional Chilean way: cold and strong. Smooth, creamy, and sweet. Cola de Mono is almost like caffeinated eggnog. Enjoy a treat like Pan de Pascua, a very dense, nutty fruitcake. A recipe is here for your holiday pleasures.
It's called glögg in Sweden, glühwein in Germany, grzaniec galicyjski in Poland, vin brûlé in Italy, and vin chaud in France. The Ancient Greeks weren't really the type of people to leave extra wine on the table, but there was always a part of the harvest that didn't make it. To prevent waste (and make sure as much alcohol as possible was palatable), the Greeks would dump spices into the wine and heat it up. Here are the recipes, and leave me a comment below about whose mulled wine you will try.
The Manhattan is a classic cocktail of choice for whiskey-lovers. The name came about because of a party held in the Manhattan Club in New York City. The origins of the drink are obscure; however, the most popular is from the early 1880s by Lady Randolph Churchill, Winston's mother. The Manhattan is considered a potent alcohol cocktail. This classic cocktail is usually made with rye whiskey; click here for a Food & Wine recipe.