Holiday Bourbon Cocktail

We are just 1 day away from Thanksgiving and at this point we are starting our prepping of the the food, putting the final touches on any table decor and making those last minutes stops for whatever it is that we forget (because there is always something else we needed right??!!).

One thing you may have not thought of for your Thanksgiving gathering is a signature Holiday Cocktail… now you may think “don’t we have enough to do???” well let me just say this Holiday Bourbon Cocktail is very simple in it’s prep but definitely not in it’s flavors!

You can make the cranberry juice mix the night before and then start to make the drinks before your guests arrive… or if you aren’t hosting this is a really unique thing to bring to a party and make for everyone!

Holiday Bourbon Cocktail

What’s nice about this cocktail is that it can be tailored to your specific taste… I have included two different preparations that are simple to follow and will either be more on the cocktail side of lighter and refreshing to a more strong and concentrated flavor you sip on through the evening – very similar to the classic Old Fashioned.

This Holiday Bourbon Cocktail is the perfect little addition to your celebration… with all the classic flavors of cranberries, orange, cinnamon, cloves, and a touch of rosemary (my husband would say this tastes like the holidays!) all tied together with the richness of bourbon it gives you that warm and cozy feeling of the holidays! 🙂

Holiday Bourbon Cocktail

 

Holiday Bourbon Cocktail Ingredients:

(Makes 6 Holiday Bourbon Cocktails)

For the Cocktail:

2 cups light cranberry juice
1/2 cup fresh cranberries
2 tsp whole cloves
1 star anise
2 cinnamon sticks
orange bitters
3 tbsp. agave simple syrup
12 oz. bourbon (I like to use Bulleit or Woodford Reserve)
6 ice spheres (sphere ice molds)
cocktail shaker
ice
6 rocks glasses (a short cocktail glass will do)

For Garnish:

6 orange peels
6 fresh rosemary sprigs
6 cinnamon sticks

Holiday Bourbon Cocktail

Directions:

For the Cranberry Juice Mix: 

  1. In a medium sauce pan, add cranberry juice, cranberries, cloves, star anise, and cinnamon sticks.
  2. Turn heat up to medium-high.
  3. Bring to a simmer, turn heat down to medium-low and continue simmering for about 5-8 minutes. This will reduce to about 1- 1/2 cups of liquid.
  4. Remove from heat and completely cool before building the cocktails. (TIP: Leave in all the spices and such as it’s cooling to get a stronger flavor.)
  5. Once liquid is cooled, strain but keep the cranberries for extra garnish.

For the Holiday Bourbon Cocktail: per cocktail 

In a cocktail shaker with ice add:

  • 2 ounces of the cooled cranberry  juice mixture
  • 2 ounces of bourbon
  • 1/2 tablespoon agave simple syrup
  • 2 dashes of orange bitters
  • Set up glasses with ice spheres in them.
  • Place top on cocktail shaker, shake for about 10 seconds.
  • Remove top and leave strainer on, pour drink over ice and garnish with rosemary, orange peel, a few cranberries (the ones you saved from before) and a cinnamon stick.
  • Serve immediately.

TIP: For the orange peel, if you bend back and forth for a few seconds; this will release the oils and will make your drink more flavorful. 

For the Holiday Bourbon Old Fashioned: per cocktail (this is going to be the more concentrated and stronger cocktail) 

In a cocktail shaker with ice add:

  • 1 ounce of cooled cranberry juice mixture
  • 2 ounce bourbon
  • 1/2 tablespoon agave simple syrup
  • 2 dashes of orange bitters
  • Set up glasses with ice spheres in them.
  • Place top on cocktail shaker, shake for about 10 seconds.
  • Remove top and leave strainer on, pour drink over ice and garnish with rosemary, orange peel, a few cranberries (the ones you saved from before) and a cinnamon stick.
  • Serve immediately.

Holiday Bourbon Cocktail

 

Emily

EMILY NESS is a full-time food and lifestyle author who’s passionate about developing simple yet mouth-watering recipes that anyone can make. Since founding her website CookingUpHappiness.com in 2013, she’s went on to share her passion for cooking healthy and tasty recipes with the thousands of people around the world.
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Emily Ness

Sharing a passion for food and fitness to live a healthy lifestyle - with the occasional hint of chocolate.

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