There really is no better time than Christmas to get together with friends and family, but since we’re fast approaching the festive season, why not go all out and hold a party, complete with a couple of well-chosen – and equally festive – drinks?
If you need some inspiration for divine drinks to serve your guests, look no further than this week’s blog.
Get the Drinks In
Chances are you already have a variety of spirits and liquors in your cabinet, saved for special occasions or for that Friday night chill out session after a busy week.
Gin in particular is growing in popularity right now, so make sure you have a bottle in, ready to serve those in your circle of family and friends who love a glass of their favourite tipple. Try it with soda or, if you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, with vermouth and a festive garnish or two to as a festive martini.
Do your friends love a sip or two of whiskey? Whip them up a Spiced Apple Fizz by serving them a tall glass of Jack Daniels Tennessee Fire, mixed with sparkling juice and served with an apple wedge. It’s simple but sophisticated and certain to be a smash-hit.
For the non-drinkers or drivers in your group, mulled berry punch, made from a blend of berries, apple and natural spices, is a perfect winter warmer. Or if you’re parent to a teenage son or daughter, why not let them try a glass of elderflower wine – most varieties are non-alcoholic and fruity, so they’ll be no risk of a tiddly teenager on your hands.
Fancy having a go at making your own Christmas cracker of a drink and really impressing your friends and family? If you have a few days to go before your gathering, try this Christmas pudding vodka recipe from Jamie Oliver.
1 piece of blade mace
2 sticks of cinnamon
3 teaspoons of ground mixed spice
1 lemon and 1 orange
300g of currants
200g chopped mixed peel
450g light muscovado sugar
1 litre of quality vodka
A number of clean bottles
Begin by warming the spices in a dry pan over a low heat for around 10 minutes, grating the lemon and orange rind into a bowl and squeezing in two tablespoons of each juice as you do so.
Next, combine with the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Cover and chill for three to four days, ensuring you stir the mix a few times each day.
To bottle, line a sieve with muslin, and strain. You can discard the cinnamon sticks but keep the soaked fruits as they’ll probably have other uses. Decant the vodka into the bottles and seal them securely.
Your drinks will now store for up to a year and can be served either at room temperature. Or, if you have a wine cooler, you can chill them for a few hours before your guests arrive to enjoy the festive fun.
No matter what tipples you choose to whip up or stock up on for you and your guests to enjoy, with so many options to choose from, you’re sure to impress and have a thoroughly dazzling dinner party.
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Until next time…
Remember: Drink responsibly this festive season.