Just because it’s past Christmas, it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a good night out, or a great cocktail to start the evening off on the right note. Just so long as there’s no Sherry, Baileys, mulled wine, cranberries or any other festive flavours involved, right?
Dakota Murphey, independent content writer working alongside Best Venues London, has put together a selection of 7 refreshing and indulgent winter cocktails that are perfect for the post-Christmas freeze.
Are you detoxing this January? Watching your weight? The good news is that there’s a low calorie cocktail that will allow you to have fun without throwing you off course. Soaring in popularity over recent years, at around 90 calories per drink the Skinny Bitch is the go-to cocktail for any post-Christmas dieter.
85ml soda water (or diet cola)
In a tall glass, pour vodka and soda water (or diet cola) over ice, then add a squeeze and wedge of lime. Chin-chin!
A classic cocktail if ever there was one, why wait until summer to enjoy it? This Margarita is given a winter twist with the addition of egg white and smoky Mezcal, a type of Tequila.
30 ml Tequila
30 ml Mezcal
30 ml lime juice
20 ml simple syrup
1 egg white
Place all ingredients bar the ice into a cocktail shaker and shake, then shake again with ice. Strain into a cocktail glass and serve with a salted rim. Salud!
Are you feeling under the weather this winter? If you’ve been struck down by a cold, this winter cocktail has medicinal properties using honey, lemon, ginger and whisky. Not that you need to be poorly to enjoy a Penicillin, but it’s a pretty good excuse.
50 ml blended Scotch whisky
25 ml fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp honey syrup
1 tbsp ginger syrup
1 tbsp Laphroaig single malt whisky
Slice of lemon
Pour the Scotch, lemon juice, syrups and ice into a cocktail shaker and shake, then strain into a whisky tumbler, adding one ice cube. Pour the single malt over the back of a spoon so that it floats on top, and serve with a lemon wheel. To your health.
- Classic White Russian
A throwback to the 1990s and featured prominently in the cult film The Big Lebowski (1998), the Classic White Russian is a smooth, easy drinking blend of vodka, coffee liqueur and milk or cream. It definitely channels winter, but not Christmas.
30 ml Vodka (chilled)
30 ml Kahlua or other coffee liqueur
60 ml Milk (chilled)
Fill a whisky tumbler with ice and add all ingredients. Stir and serve. If you prefer a richer taste, you can substitute 30 ml single cream for the milk. Na Zdorovye!
- Scandi Manhattan
Scandinavians know a thing or three about long, cold winters and their spirit of choice, Aquavit, is a pretty good winter warmer with a refreshingly herbal twist. Try this Nordic interpretation of the classic Manhattan Cocktail and see if you can feel your toes again.
60 ml Aquavit
20 ml sweet vermouth
1 tbsp Kirsch
2 dashes Angostura bitters
Place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake, then strain into a tumbler. Garnish with a cherry. Skol!
- Sunshine Mary
For serious health aficionados who don’t want to go dry in January, take a look at this fresh twist on the classic Bloody Mary. Using the distinctive British aperitif Kamm & Sons which contains health promoting such as ginseng, Manuka honey, Echinacea and a host of other botanicals, you could come to the conclusion that drinking is actually good for you!
35 ml Kamm & Sons
150 ml tomato juice (ideally yellow, otherwise red)
15 ml fresh lemon juice
6 dashes of green Tabasco sauce
1 pinch of salt, pepper and celery salt
A touch of horseradish
Fill a tall glass with ice, add all ingredients and stir. Garnish with a slice of yellow pepper (or red pepper if you’re using red tomato juice) and serve with a straw. Cheers!
- Easy Winter Elixir
Ingredients:How about a simple winter pick-me-up that’s fresh and fruity to start the year off with a bang? This Winter Elixir might be just the thing to start a girlie night in January or February off with a swing.
50 ml Vodka
60 ml soda
20 ml simple syrup
20 ml pomegranate juice
15 ml fresh lemon juice
2 sprigs rosemary
1 slice lemon
Muddle the syrup and 1 rosemary sprig together in a cocktail shaker, then add the vodka and juices and shake. Strain into a tall glass and top with soda. Garnish with the other rosemary sprig and lemon wheel and serve.