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Three Cocktails For Thanksgiving

On Thanksgiving, so much attention is given to the main course—the roast turkey, sweet potatoes, gravy, green beans, cranberry sauce, and more. It’s a lot to manage in one afternoon, but you’re a seasoned pro by now, so we know you’ve got the dinner part handled. What about the beverages though? Drinks always seem to play second fiddle during gatherings, but they can also play an important role.

If drinks are not yet on your Thanksgiving dinner menu, we have a few new recipes to try:


Cranberry sauce is a staple on the Thanksgiving dinner table, which makes it a great flavor to feature in your Thanksgiving cocktail. This delicious recipe features a beautiful cranberry color and a candied cranberry garnish, which is sure to impress your dinner guests. As a bonus, this cocktail also works great as a party punch. Below, you’ll find recipes for both a single cocktail and for a party of 12.

Ingredients - Yields 1 Cocktail
- 1.5 oz. Rum 44
- 1 oz. Unsweetened cranberry juice
- 3/4 oz. simple syrup
- 1/2 oz. lime juice
- 3 dashes of Floyd Wild Plum Bitters
- Fever Tree Tonic

Ingredients - Yields 12 Cocktails
- 18 oz. Rum 44
- 12 oz. unsweetened cranberry
- 9 oz. simple syrup
- 6 oz. lime juice
- 36 dashes of Floyd Wild Plum Bitters
- Fever Tree Tonic

To make a single cocktail, shake all ingredients (except the tonic) with ice, then strain into a stemless glass with fresh ice. Top with the Fever Tree Tonic, and garnish with a candied cranberry (cranberry rolled in sugar), a dried orange wheel, and fresh mint. For a beautiful presentation, leave enough room in your glass so that the candied cranberry does not sit in the cocktail.

To make a party punch, add all ingredients (except the tonic) in a punch bowl and stir well to combine. When serving individual glasses, serve over ice and then top each glass with Fever Tree Tonic to allow for full effervescence.

How To Make Candied Cranberries:
When making your simple syrup, add a handful of whole cranberries into the saucepan. Let them simmer for 3 -5 minutes on low heat, then cool the cranberries for one hour on parchment paper. Once they have cooled, toss them in granulated sugar.


Instead of serving apple pie after your Thanksgiving dinner, consider serving an apple cider cocktail! Combining our Maple Cask Rum with a hard and dry cider, this cocktail is simple to mix and very flavorful. 

Similar to the Cranberry Bog, this cocktail recipe works great for making a single cocktail, or for serving as a party punch if you’re hosting a large group.

Ingredients - Yields 1 Cocktail 
- 1.5 oz. Maple Cask Rum
- 2 oz. Champlain Orchard’s Fresh Apple Cider
- 1/4 oz. maple syrup
- 1/2 oz. lemon juice
- 1/2 oz. orange juice
- 5 dashes Angostura Bitters
- Stowe Cider Dry & High (hard cider to top)

Ingredients - Yields 12 Cocktails
- 12 oz. Maple Cask Rum
- 24 oz. Champlain Orchard’s Fresh Apple Cider
- 3 oz. maple syrup
- 6 oz. lemon juice
- 6 oz. orange juice
- 1 Tbsp Angostura Bitters
- Stowe Cider Dry & High (hard cider to top)

To make a single cocktail, combine all ingredients, except the hard cider, in a shaker with ice. Strain into a Collins glass, then top the glass with hard cider. (If you can’t find Stowe Cider Dry & High, another hard dry cider will work). Then, add an orange and lemon wedge for garnish. 

To make a party punch, combine all ingredients in a large bowl, except for the hard cider. Mix well. Serve into a punch cup and top with the hard cider, then garnish each glass as above. 


After Thanksgiving dinner wraps up and you’re ready for a touch of dessert, this cocktail will satisfy those cookie cravings. It combines our Vanilla Rum along with Amaretto, Dry Vermouth, ginger syrup and bitters for a gingerbread cookie-inspired sipper.

Ingredients - Yields 1 Cocktail
- 2 oz. Vanilla Rum
- 1 oz. Dolin Dry Vermouth
- 1/4 oz. Disaronno amaretto 
- 1/4 oz. Ginger syrup
- 2 dashes Fee Brothers Black Walnut Bitters
- 2 dashes Bokers Cardamom and Citrus Peel Bitters

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass with ice and stir. Strain into a small stem glass. Then, top the rim with a gingerbread cookie garnish and enjoy!

We hope you love these new Thanksgiving recipes as much as we do, and if you make one or more of them, feel free to share and tag us on social @madriverdistillers. As always, please enjoy responsibly. 

From all of us at Mad River Distillers, have a very happy and safe Thanksgiving holiday. Cheers!

Written and published by Brianne Lucas on November 21, 2022.

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