Hosting the Holidays



There’s nothing more festive than a holiday cocktail. Rich in flavor and doused with a heaping helping of nostalgia, these make the party. When preparing your cocktail menu, have enough variety in your choices so no one feels left out, says Hannah Vossen, who owns Set the Bar with Cassandra Hailey. “And have a backup too that they can enjoy, a safe one that’s not too heavy.” Hannah fancies recipes that favor bourbon. “Bitters are a great way to get extra flavor in” without having to buy a big portion of another product. For example, her Oatmeal Rum Raisin Old Fashioned is a spin on the holiday classic. Cassandra favors gin: “I love a Spiced Cherry Martini. Gin does well during holidays because it’s so herbal and floral.”

You really can’t go wrong when crafting your menu, Hannah says. “Create a cocktail that you are absolutely going to love based on your favorite flavor profiles and spirits.” And be sure there is a balance. Pair a sweet ingredient with an acid. If you’re making a creamy drink, don’t make it too heavy. “Nothing too overpowering,” Cassandra points out. “Get to know your guests and what they like.” And be sure to include a recipe that can be made in a big batch ahead of time to make it easier for you to enjoy your guests and party, too!

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