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Hot Cocktails for a Cold Day

As the temperatures dip even further this winter, we know you might be reaching for warmer beverages over your usual chilled cocktails. We don’t blame you. Sometimes, a hot chocolate or a hot toddy is just the thing you need to warm your bones on an ice cold day. 

It just so happens that we love our hot cocktails in the winter season, so we’ve compiled a list of some favorites you can make right at home. After all, when it’s really cold, we know you’d rather stay indoors. If you decide to venture out, our Burlington Tasting Room always offers a hot cocktail on our menu through the winter.

These hot cocktail recipes will give you all the cozy and toasty vibes:


Ingredients - Yields 1 Cocktail:
- 1.5 oz. of Maple Cask Rum
- ½ oz. of fresh lemon juice
- ½ oz. of honey ginger syrup
- 2 dashes of El Guapo Chicory Pecan Bitters
- 2 dashes of Vena’s Aromatic Bitters
- Hot Water

Combine ingredients in your favorite mug. Top off with hot water. Stir and garnish with candied ginger and a lemon peel.


Ingredients - Yields 1 Cocktail:
- 1.5 oz. of Vanilla Rum (or Revolution Rye)
- 6 oz. (or less) of prepared Hot Chocolate
- Whipped cream

Measure and pour 1.5 oz. of Vanilla Rum (or Rye) into an Irish coffee mug glass. Prepare up to 6 oz. of your favorite hot chocolate mix. Pour the hot chocolate into the mug, and stir well to combine. Top with whipped cream, and enjoy!


Ingredients - Yields 1 Cocktail
- 1.5 oz. of Burnt Rock Bourbon
- ½ oz. of fresh lemon juice
- ½ oz. of honey ginger syrup
- 2 dashes of El Guapo Chicory Pecan Bitters
- 2 dashes of 18.21 Earl Grey Bitters
- Hot Water

Combine all ingredients in your favorite mug and stir well to incorporate. Top off with hot water. Stir again, and garnish with a lemon peel.


Ingredients - Yields 1 Cocktail:
- 1.5 oz. of Revolution Rye
- 1 oz. of demerara syrup
- hot coffee
- 2 oz. of whipping cream
- ½ oz. of Benedictine (or cinnamon syrup)
- cinnamon

In an Irish coffee mug, add the Revolution Rye, demerara syrup and hot coffee. Stir to combine ingredients. In a shaker, combine the whipping cream and Benedictine (or cinnamon syrup) and shake for a full minute until whipped cream is formed. Top the coffee with whipped cream. Grate fresh cinnamon on top.


Ingredients - Yields 1 Cocktail
- 6 oz. of prepared hot chocolate 
- 1.5 oz. of Vanilla Rum
- ½ dropper of Bittermens Xocolatl Mole Bitters
- cinnamon stick

Measure and pour the Vanilla Rum into your coffee mug. Prepare 6 oz. of hot chocolate mix and add it to the mug. Add the mole bitters, then stir all ingredients in the mug. Top with whipped cream, freshly grated cinnamon, and garnish with a cinnamon stick.


Instructions - Yields 1 Cocktail:
- 1 tsp freshly ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 3/4 tsp ground cloves
- 1/2 tsp ground allspice
- 1/2 tsp ground anise seed
- 2 sticks salted butter
- 2 cups packed golden brown sugar
- 1 tbsp molasses
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1.5 oz Maple Cask Rum
- 2 tbsp of spiced butter batter
- 6 oz. of hot water
- Whipped cream

Instructions for Buttered Rum Batter:
In a bowl, combine the cinnamon, nutmeg, black pepper, cloves, all spice, and anise seed. Set it aside. In a small saucepan, melt the 2 sticks (1 cup) of butter over low heat. Be sure to note the expiration date on the sticks of butter for future reference. Once melted, add the sugar and stir to combine. Next, stir in the molasses and vanilla extract, then add the spice mixture from the bowl. Continue to stir over low heat until all the ingredients are combined. This should take about 15 minutes. Once the ingredients are integrated, remove the saucepan from the heat. Once the butter batter has cooled but is still warm, pour it into a storage container. We portioned the batter into ice cube trays, measuring 2 tablespoons of batter to be used per drink. Allow the batter to cool completely into a solid cube, then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Follow the expiration date on the butter packaging. The butter batter should yield about 15 servings. 

Instructions for Hot Buttered Rum Cocktail:
Combine all ingredients in an irish coffee mug. Stir until the butter batter is fully incorporated into the hot water and rum. Then, top with whipped cream and cinnamon stick.

The Hot Buttered Rum recipe takes the most preparation, but it’s really incredible, so if you have some free time this winter, be sure to work this into your weekend plans. When it comes to the hot chocolate mix in our hot cocktails above, we recommend Lake Champlain Chocolates, a business neighbor in Burlington. Their hot chocolate mix is excellent, and you can often find it at our Burlington Tasting Room. Visit both of us if you find yourself craving even more chocolate! We also carry bitters in our retail section, so you can pick up a bottle of 18.21, Bittermens and El Guapo there (along with a wide variety of other options). Cheers!

Written and published by Brianne Lucas on December 19, 2023.

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