Happy New Year, cocktail lovers! What better way to start the first month of the new year than with a selection of fresh and fascinating cocktails?
This group of drinks will be filled with cool variations of classic cocktails that will seem like originals, as well as some simple but refreshing ones. We also have a special treat for those who like to make their cocktails like they’re conducting an experiment. Let’s dive in!
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1. Hello (Christmas Garibaldi)
A Garibaldi is a simple drink made of fluffy orange juice and Italian red bitter liqueur (usually Campari). However, Matthew from Augustine Bar takes the orange component to the next level by adding orange bitters and orange eau de vie to the Hello.
For additional flavor, cacao beans are also added to the liqueur. This drink is part of Matthew’s recipe segment wherein he concocts and names a drink after a song, and this one is inspired by “Hello (and it’s Christmas)” by Kytes.
While oranges don’t seem like conventional Christmas fruits, they are part of a Christmas tradition by many families and symbolize fortune and generosity.
For the cacao-infused bitter liqueur:
For the Garibaldi:
- 1 ½ oz. Cacao-infused Italian red bitter liqueur
- ¼ oz. Haas orange eau de vie
- 2 oz. Fluffy orange juice
- 2 dashes of Bob’s mandarin & orange bitters
- Big ice cube
- Orange twist (garnish)
To make the cacao-infused bitter liqueur:
- Lightly pound the cacao beans with an ice mallet until they crack.
- Put the cracked beans in the bitter liqueur and let them macerate until the flavors are well incorporated.
To make the Garibaldi:
- Pour the orange juice into a drinking glass and blend it using an immersion blender until it becomes frothy or fluffy.
- Combine the ingredients in a mixing glass filled with an ice cube. Stir gently with a bar spoon.
- Strain the drink into a chilled double old-fashioned glass.
- Garnish with an orange twist.
2. Isolated Species (Clarified Milk Punch)
Clarified milk punch is a drink dating back to the 1600s and became popular in the 1700s. At those times, the liquors tasted harsh, and there was no refrigeration. But the clarification or milk washing technique made the drink smoother and more shelf-stable.
When milk is added with citric acid, the curds and whey are separated. The curds bind with the astringent components of the punch’s ingredients, like tannins, to mellow out the drink’s flavors, while the whey adds a creamy and smooth mouthfeel.
Verso Mixology incorporates passionfruit and ginger, an interesting combo worth trying.
- Pour the milk into a large glass bowl.
- In a glass pitcher, combine all the other ingredients except the ice. Stir gently with a spoon.
- Slowly pour the mixture into the bowl of milk while stirring with a spoon.
- Cover the bowl with a piece of cloth and let the mixture rest for 30 minutes to 24 hours.
- Prepare a straining device by placing a fine sieve lined with cheesecloth or nut milk bag over a big container.
- Slowly pour the mixture into the strainer to collect the curds.
- Squeeze the cloth to get all the liquid out.
- Transfer the strained mixture to another pitcher. At this point, the drink will still be cloudy. So repeat this straining process one or two more times.
- For the final strain, use a coffee filter over a big jar to get a clearer result. This will be a much slower process, so be patient.
- To make the cocktail, place a big clear ice cube in a stemmed glass and pour the milk punch about three-quarters of the way.
- Garnish with the passionfruit slice and rosemary sprig.
3. Bitter Juan
The Bitter Juan by galumbi_drinksandmore is a Mexican variant of the Bitter Jean cocktail. The latter is usually made with Speyside and Islay Scotch whisky, but in this version, they are replaced with a Reposado tequila and Oaxacan Mezcal.
Because reposado tequila is aged, it does exhibit some similarities with Scotch, like vanilla, oak, and caramel notes. But with the addition of Mezcal, the drink will have a smoky and herbaceous flavor.
- Place the ice cube in a mixing glass and pour in all the ingredients.
- Gently stir until the drink gets cold.
- Strain it into a chilled coupe glass.
- Stick the cherries with a cocktail pick and garnish the drink with it.
4. Orange Soul
The Orange Soul cocktail by g_i_n_p_a_n_s_e is another drink with a touch of Christmas spirit. It features a traditional Christmas flavor, gingerbread, in gin form, paired with bright and citrusy orange juice.
And to make it more orange, there’s also carrot juice, offering an earthy and mild yet complementing flavor to the drink.
For the Honey Syrup:
For the Orange Soul:
- 1.35 oz. (40 ml) Gin 42 Gingerbread
- 0.68 oz. (20 ml) Cointreau
- ½ oz. Honey syrup
- 0.68 oz. (20 ml) Freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 oz. Carrot juice
- Ice cubes
- Orange strip
For the Honey Syrup:
- Combine the honey and water in a saucepan and heat on low heat until the honey is fully dissolved.
- Let it cool before mixing it in the cocktail, and store the remainder in a tight container.
For the Orange Soul:
- Fill a cocktail shaker with ice cubes and pour in all the ingredients. Cover and shake for a few seconds.
- Strain the drink into an ice-filled highball glass.
- Garnish the drink by clipping an orange strip on the glass rim.
5. Sleigh Ride
The combination of spiced rum and pineapple juice is an excellent way to elevate a classic cocktail. You will get the delightful tart fruit flavors paired with the deep spicy notes of the rum. And the grenadine syrup adds a splash of bright color to the iconic beach drink.
- Pour the ingredients into an ice-filled cocktail shaker Cover and shake vigorously for 10-20 seconds.
- Double-strain the drink into a chilled coupe glass.
- Clip the dehydrated pineapple and lime on the rim of the glass.
6. The French 69
The French 75 often shows up in lists of the most classic cocktails. It is said to have been created during the peak of Prohibition and was named after a French 75mm Howitzer field gun due to its strong flavor.
If you want an extra dimension to this drink, try The Trekkin’ Tippler’s The French 69, as he uses elderflower liqueur as a sweetener. And instead of Champagne or Prosecco, he uses a mix of white wine and soda water. Give this drink a try during your next brunch!
- Pour all the ingredients, except the soda water, into a cocktail shaker and add ice cubes. Cover and shake for several seconds.
- Strain it into a chilled coupe glass.
- Top with the soda water.
- Garnish with a lemon twist.
7. Green Thumb
Green drinks are often viewed as too bitter, but you won’t experience any unpleasantness with the Green Thumb, created by Jim Meehan and featured by Mike of cocktail.complex. This cocktail brings a Japanese flair and is full of fresh flavors from lime, celery, and cucumber.
It also features a touch of Caribbean, thanks to the rum used, and the elderflower liqueur complements the drink’s vegetal flavors with its floral and fragrant aspects.
- Put one cucumber wheel, the celery, and simple syrup into a cocktail shaker and muddle them.
- Add the remaining ingredients into the glass, cover, and shake without ice so the matcha tea will be incorporated well.
- Add ice and shake again.
- Double-strain the mixture into a chilled coupe glass.
- Garnish with the other cucumber wheel.
The ingredient list of the Sayulita is definitely not for a common cocktail. It is one of the best cocktails made by the head mixologist of the Roses Cocina restaurant in Toronto, Ben Kingstone of kingcoctions, and is also his favorite drink.
Perhaps the most special component of this drink is the lime juice, which Kingstone actually creates using molecular mixology. The best way to enjoy this inventive drink is to go to the restaurant, but if you can’t, you can still enjoy this simplified recipe.
For the salted coconut and rosewater cordial:
For the Sayulita Cocktail:
To make the salted coconut and rosewater cordial:
- Combine the ingredients in a saucepan and bring it to low to medium heat. Don’t let it come to a boil to avoid caramelizing the sugar.
- Stir the mixture gently until the sugar is fully dissolved.
- Transfer the cordial to a jar and let it cool before closing it.
To make the Sayulita cocktail:
- Put the mint leaves and lime juice in a Tiki glass or Collins glass.
- Fill the glass with crushed ice about three-quarters of the way and add in the rest of the ingredients.
- Stir the drink with a bar spoon.
- Top it off with soda water.
- Stick the cucumber ribbon and lime wedge with a cocktail pick and garnish the drink with it, along with the sprig of mint.
9. Blackberry Mojito
While the rum is absent on this mojito, it is substituted with gin, a great vehicle for fresh berries, citrus, and mint with its herbaceous flavors.
- Muddle the blackberries, mint leaves, and lime juice in a glass. (If you’re using sugar, muddle it with the ingredients at this stage.)
- Add the gin, simple syrup, and ice cubes into the glass.
- Top with the soda.
- Serve with a straw.
10. Blueberry Mule
Moscow Mule is another cocktail with many variations, and this Blueberry Mule by Sip Social Collective can easily become a favorite. This cocktail was actually created as a detox drink after the Christmas festivities.
Blueberries have a satisfying sweetness and juiciness with a hint of acidity that would play well with the spices of ginger ale. This drink would also make a fantastic summer treat!
- Combine the blueberries, lime juice, and blueberry syrup in a glass and muddle them.
- Add ice cubes and vodka into the glass and top with ginger ale. Stir with a bar spoon.
- Garnish with blueberries and lime wedge.
Whether you choose the simpler and more familiar cocktails or the time-consuming ones, we bet you’ll have a terrific time either way.
This is just the beginning of a year of amazing and world-class cocktails, so stay tuned for next month’s roundup. If you want to be a part of it, follow us on Instagram or subscribe to our YouTube channel for more booze-related content.