Batch Cocktails For Your Holiday Soirees
Jordhan Woods, ReserveBar Staff Writer
The holidays are quickly approaching, and you know what that entails — hosting gatherings with friends, parties with co-workers, and seasonal soirées with family. While hosting these annual events is exciting, it can also be exhausting. Decorating, catering, bartending, socializing… the list goes on and on. But we had an idea for how to make preparations for your next event just a little bit easier: batch cocktails! Why make every individual guest a cocktail when you can prepare a batch of them instead? We scoured our Cocktail Lounge to select five batch cocktail recipes to try this holiday season.
Sugar Plum Fairy
The champagne cocktail emerged in the 1800s, and it has gone through many revisions and upgrades since. While the traditional champagne cocktail is mixed with cognac, this batch recipe is crafted with bourbon. In this cocktail, you’ll taste caramel and savory flavors from the unique Jefferson’s Ocean bourbon, the tartness of the lime cordial, a hint of British plum pudding from the bitters, and finally, the bubbly sensation from the champagne. It’s complex, yet easy to craft.
- 3 cups (1 bottle) Jefferson’s Ocean
- 1 ½ cups Lime Cordial
- 8 dashes Plum Bitters
- 12 cups (3 bottles) Perrier Jouët Grand Brut
- Edible Glitter
Batch recipe in pitcher or bowl. Chill until use. Rim glassware with edible glitter by dipping glass in honey and then in edible glitter. To serve, fill a chilled coupe about ⅓ up with punch and top with Perrier Jouët Grand Brut before serving.
Apple Walnut Sangria
Sangria has been a staple in the world of batch cocktails for decades, and for a good reason — it’s a certified crowd-pleaser. There are many variations of this iconic punch, but we are sharing a quick yet festive sangria to serve at your winter gatherings. You’ll begin with the intensely fruity Lillet Rouge as your red wine base and add Martell Blue Swift’s subtly sweet cognac to get the party started. You’ll then top it with black walnut bitters to add a nutty flavor and lemonade and orange juice for sour acidity. Don’t forget your thyme and apple slices for garnish! The result is a well-rounded, balanced, and delicious holiday cocktail.
- 3 cups (1 bottle) Lillet Rouge
- 1 ½ cups Martell Blue Swift
- 2 dashes Black Walnut Bitters
- 1 cup Lemonade
- ½ cup Orange Juice
- 2 Thyme Sprigs (garnish)
- 1 Apple (garnish)
Batch in a non-reactive container. Pour over ice in a pitcher or bowl when ready to serve. Garnish with thyme sprigs and apple slices.
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Clarified Milk Punch
We know what you may be thinking. Milk? In a cocktail? In short, the answer is: absolutely! We know one of your concerns may be the milk curdling, but this clarified milk punch recipe uses a little bit of science and cheesecloth to avoid just that. Clarified milk punch recipes have been around since the 1700s, and this specific variation is a batch cocktail containing sherry, Facundo Neo rum, juice, green tea, and the secret ingredient: almond milk. Unlike the previous recipes, this will require a bit more preparation, so be sure to plan ahead. However, the result will be a citrusy, sweet, and smooth punch sure to please your friends or family this holiday season.
- 2 cups Facundo Neo
- 8 Lemons
- 1 Whole Pineapple
- 2 Nutmeg Sticks
- 2 Cinnamon Sticks
- 2 Whole Star Anise
- 1 cup Lemon Juice
- 2 cups Pineapple Juice
- 1 cup Granulated White Sugar
- 2 cups Green Tea, brewed and cooled
- 2 cups Amontillado Sherry
- 1 cup Almond Milk
Use a sharp knife or vegetable peeler to remove the zest from 8 lemons, taking care to avoid the white pith. Add the lemon zest to a large airtight container, preferably glass.
Peel and core the pineapple, cut it into large chunks, and add to the lemon peels. Coarsely grind the spices with a mortar and pestle. Add the spices, sugar, and 6 ounces of lemon juice to the container. Muddle the mixture.
Pour in the green tea, Amontillado Sherry and Pineapple juice in the mixture. Let sit overnight, then strain the mixture into a clean container.
Bring the milk to a boil. Add the boiling milk and the remaining lemon juice to the strained mixture — the milk will curdle, and the solids will coagulate. Stir once to mix when adding milk, but do not stir again so that the solids stay separated from the cocktail. Let cool.
Strain the liquid a little at a time through a fine chinois lined with a cheesecloth, replacing the cheesecloth if it becomes too thickly layered with milk solids. Pour into a clean container, cover and refrigerate overnight to give the remaining milk solids time to settle. Ladle the clarified punch into a clean container, taking care not to disturb the solids at the bottom. Strain again, if desired.
Add Facundo Neol to the clarified punch mixture, and it is ready to serve.
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Sparkling Rosé Margarita
Do you know what cocktail is sure to impress your guests this holiday season? The ultimate crowd-pleaser — the margarita. And not just a traditional margarita, but a strawberry basil-infused sparkling rosé margarita! This recipe combines infused DeLeón Blanco Tequila, sparkling rosé, and fresh lime juice to create a punch reminiscent of a traditional margarita with a fizzy twist. Garnish with strawberries, lime, and grapefruit slices. You can rim your punch glasses with salt beforehand for a quick serving of this spicy-sweet cocktail
- 3 cups (1 bottle) DeLeón Blanco Tequila
- ½ cup Sliced Strawberries for infusion
- ½ cup Basil Leaves, for infusion
- 1 ½ cups Fresh Lime Juice
- 1 ¼ cups Agave Syrup
- 1 ¼ cups Sparkling Rosé
- Sliced Strawberries (garnish)
- Lime Wheels (garnish)
- Rose Salt (garnish)
- Grapefruit Slices (garnish)
To create the strawberry and basil-infused tequila, combine sliced strawberries fresh basil leaves with a bottle of DeLeón Blanco Tequila in a glass jar. Seal jar tightly and let sit, unrefrigerated, for 3-5 days. Shake daily. Strain out solids, and rebottle the infused tequila.
In a punch bowl, combine the tequila, lime juice, and agave syrup. Add cubed ice and stir with a ladle to mix. Top with the sparkling rosé. Garnish the punch bowl with 1 cup sliced strawberries, lime wheels from 2 limes, and grapefruit slices from 2 grapefruits. Rim punch glasses with rose salt before serving.
* Rose salt: Add 4 tablespoons of sea salt and 1 tablespoon of dried rosebuds to a mortar and pestle, and gently grind. Place on a small plate for rimming.
The old fashioned is one of the most popular cocktails in the world. It consists of bourbon, bitters, sugar cubes, a drop of water, and orange zest. These cocktails are delicious, but they require time and effort to make just one. For your gatherings this holiday season, we have a recipe for an old fashioned variation batch cocktail to help you focus on what’s important — enjoying yourself! You’ll combine Redbreast 12 Irish Whiskey as your malty base, Angostura bitters for your spicy elements, two liqueurs for your sweetness, water for balance, and two garnishes for your wow factor. Even though we are helping you cut corners by preparing this cocktail in a batch, we are certain it doesn’t sacrifice flavor for your guests!
- 3 cups (1 bottle) Redbreast 12
- 1 ½ ounce Angostura Bitters
- 1 ½ ounce Cherry Liqueur
- 3 ounces Orange Liqueur
- ¾ cup Water
- Star Anise (garnish)
- Orange Twist (garnish)
Batch all ingredients by adding them to a large, airtight glass container and stirring. Chill for at least 12 hours in the refrigerator. To serve, pour over ice and garnish with star anise and orange twist.
More Batch Cocktail Options
In the Cocktail Lounge, we have hundreds of recipes that you can try to easily turn into batch cocktails with a little bit of quick math. There are about 3 cups or 24 ounces in a standard 750ml bottle of spirits if you need it. Give the Hendrick’s Cranberry Fizz a go; it’s a delightful drink filled with cranberry, bubbles, mint, and more. If you’re searching for something with apples, try out the Crown Royal Apple Crownberry Apple — a crisp and simple cocktail to make in bulk for your gathering. For a quick classic, try the Moët & Chandon Grand Royal: there’s very little prep work and lots of bubbles in this crowd-pleaser.