Part of the fun of throwing a holiday party is figuring out the menu, food and drinks. Since I’m hosting a soiree and take party planning seriously, I dove into beverage research first.
My criteria were simple. The winning beverages had to look festive, taste festive, involve cranberries, and most important, been thoroughly vetted by hundreds – no thousands – of “Internet insiders.” Here are my two favorite beverages and my findings.
First, for a non-alcoholic audience, I really liked the sound of Natasha’s Kitchen’s recipe for Sparkling Cranberry Pineapple Punch. It’s red, sparkly and boasts unusual undertones, thanks to pineapple juice and a splash of almond extract. Perfect for guests of all ages. Then I read the online reviews and noted the criteria of my insider friends were a little…different:
Said Holly: “This looks great! Can you add wine to this and make it an adult beverage?”
Jennifer chimed in with: “Malibu rum would be great to add to it since it always goes well with pineapple juice.”
Not to be outdone, Beth had an interesting idea: “Did you mean to add rum OR vodka? Someone stated adding rum AND vodka. It may work, I just want to clarify before adding both.”
I kept the link (I’ll make it but wouldn’t spike it) and moved on to adult beverages. Again, similar criteria. Pretty. Cranberries. Sipped by thousands of my closest web reviewer pals.
The winning recipe? All Recipes’ Cranberry Martini. The name pretty much says it all. The unexpected ingredient is orange liqueur – Cointreau is my pick – for extra flavor and kick. Check out these reviews:
Wezie warns: “Beware! This cocktail is smooth and potent. I think this drink may be better than a Cosmo. It was DIVINE!
Danielle, a mixology maven, admitted customizing the cocktail: “So yummy – I doubled the amount of cranberry juice so they wouldn’t be too strong and got rave reviews from my guests.”
Dawn, who appears to be a bit of a tippler, shared that bulk is the way to go: “Perfect martini for the holidays. Well, anytime actually. I keep it mixed and ready to pour in my freezer.”
My reaction? SOLD! Yes to the vodka, vermouth, Cointreau, cranberry juice, and for my guests, Uber! It’s fine to make merry and enjoy adult beverages, but it’s not OK to drink and drive. Enjoy, be safe and here’s to the holidays!
Have a favorite holiday beverage recipe? I’d love to see (enjoy) it, too. Please share here.