Hosting a holiday party encompasses a lot of moving parts. There are out of control guests to consider, tasty appetizers to prep, games to be played, and then there are the drinks. We’ve got you covered on — well… most of these issues — but especially that last one.
Stocking a bar or prepping cocktails for a party should be a blend of easy-to-execute drinks or pre-made classics people can serve themselves. You don’t want to be building ten-part cocktails all night when you should be making merry with your crew. To help you in the party planning process, we’ve put together a list of six essential bottles of booze you’re gonna want on hand.
The six bottles below serve as great bases for seasonal cocktails and are also great on their own. If someone wants a rum or whiskey on the rocks or a nice nip of brandy, you’re covered. A couple of these recipes are already scaled up to serve a dozen or more people. Also, don’t be afraid to scale up the cocktail recipes yourself to serve more than one at a time — or have a mixing station in the kitchen and make shaking up cocktails part of the party. That sounds like the right type of chaos.
Appleton Estate Signature Blend Rum
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December in Seattle means cold and rainy days and nights, but we think rum is the solution! Come warm up with a Hot Buttered Rum, the most delicious and indulgent of all holiday drinks! 📸: @thewhiskeymcgee . . . . . . . #hotbutteredrum #beautifulbooze #cocktails #rum #rumbar #imbibe #imbibegram #cocktailphotography #hotdrink #rumawaytherain
Jamaica’s Appleton Estate is great dark rum to have on hand any time of year. It’s an easy-drinking rum that’ll do the trick served on the rocks or as a base in pretty much any rum-based cocktail or highball. The blend of orange zest, dried fruit, and Christmas cake spiciness and sweetness make it the perfect pick for holiday-infused rum-based drinks.
Expect to pay around $28.99 per bottle.
Your Go-To Holiday Recipe: Hot Buttered Rum
- 2 ounces rum
- 1 large tablespoon hot buttered rum batter
- 4 ounces boiling water
For the batter: Weigh out eight ounces each unsalted quality butter, brown sugar, and powdered sugar. You’ll need one teaspoon each ground cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg and one pint of quality vanilla ice cream. Blend the butter, sugar, and spices in a stand mixer until combined. Fold in the ice cream (let it soften up a bit first). Once it’s well-blended, put into a sealable container and freeze overnight. There should be enough to serve 12 or more people.
Build the drink in the mug. Add the batter and rum to the bottom of the mug. Pour the boiling water over the drink while stirring. Garnish with ground nutmeg and a cinnamon stick. Serve.