Food & Drink Bloody merry 

Holiday cocktail recipes for those who’d rather deck the halls at home

The holidays come but once a year, bringing good cheer and a host of bothersome rituals: scratchy wool sweaters, A Charlie Brown Christmas, and those insipid Jingle Bells. Bah humbug! You need a drink. Well, you know mojito, rompope, martini, and midori, but do you recall, the most famous holiday drink of all? Eggnog, the rum-filled tipple. Below is a list of holiday drinks—some classic, some new—from a few local watering holes with accompanying recipes for those of you who can’t brave the cold this winter.

Liberty Bar rings in holiday cheer with hot and delicious treats such as homemade eggnog and rompope, a Mexican eggnog made with cooked eggs. Originally used as a topping for Liberty Bar’s coffee flan, rompope includes a dollop of brandy, the generosity of which helped establish its birthright as a thick holiday favorite.

Homemade Eggnog (yields about 1 gallon)
Beat until light in color:
12 egg yolks
Beat in gradually:
1 box (pound) confectioner’s sugar
Add very slowly beating constantly:
2 c dark rum, brandy, bourbon, or rye (these liquors may be combined or stand alone)
Let mixture stand covered for 1 hour to dispel the “eggy” taste
Add, beating constantly:
2-4 c of chosen liquor
2 quarts whipping cream
Refrigerate for 3 hours. Beat until stiff but not dry:
12 egg whites
Fold lightly into other ingredients.
Serve eggnog sprinkled with nutmeg.

Homemade Rompope (yields about 1 gallon)
In large stockpot, bring to a boil:
8 c milk
1/2 t baking soda
2 c sugar
2 sticks of cinnamon
Reduce and simmer about 25 minutes until it is brownish in color and yields approximately 7 cups.
Meanwhile, beat until thick and pale yellow:
24 egg yolks

Pour milk mixture slowly into eggs. Slowly is key. You don’t want to end up with scrambled eggs! Pour mixture back into stockpot and simmer on medium-low heat stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until mixture coats back of spoon.

Take off the stove and pour into mixture:
2 c brandy
Add more milk or brandy to achieve desired consistency.

Downtown, Ácenar Mexican Café celebrates the holidays with yuletide-colored Blood Orange and Midori mojitos, and a wintry tequila-infused version of the Colorado Bulldog called the Chihuahua, naturally.

Blood Orange Mojito
In a high-ball glass, muddle 1/2 lime and 5 large mint leaves. Add:
1 1/4 shot Bacardi O
Splash of blood orange puree for color
Splash of lime
Equal parts simple sugar syrup and club soda

Midori Mojito
In a high-ball glass, muddle 1/2 lime and 5 large mint leaves. Add:
1 1/4 shot rum
Splash of lime
1/2 shot Midori
Equal parts simple sugar syrup and club soda

In a tumbler, pour
1 1/4 shot Petron’s coffee-flavored tequila
1/2 shot Petron Silver
Fill to top with half and half

Over at Paloma Blanca, the White Dove martini, promotes seasonal peace of mind with a balance of coffee and vodka and cream—not too merry, not too mellow.

Paloma Blanca’s White Dove Martini
In martini shaker combine:
1 oz. Starbucks Crème Liqueur
1/2 oz. Starbucks Coffee Liqueur
1/2 oz. Absolut Vanilla Vodka
1/2 oz. Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur
Shake with ice and serve in martini glass

For those of you who like your drinks in a bottle rather than a glass, holiday beers—richer-bodied brews with chocolate and spice hints—are always an option, and they pair nicely with flavorful winter foods such as goose, duck, and pork. For the rest of the month, Silo will feature Samuel Smith’s Winter Welcome, and the thick and rich Delirium Noel. Joey’s on North St. Mary’s will tap kegs of Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale for the holidays, and Flying Saucer will stock Anchor Steam Christmas Ale, as well as a handful of bottled beers, such as Breckenridge Christmas Ale and Left Hand XXXmas Ale.

With these ingredients and tasty beers available at your local liquor store, there’s really no need to leave the comfy confines of your house this winter—invite a few friends over and wait it out. Eventually, this holiday season, too, shall pass.

By M.L. Sharpe



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