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3 Winter Cocktails to Keep You Warm


Article by Kate McLiney

Photography by Kate McLiney

I have to admit, there is just something so festive about the first few snowfalls in December. I love the feeling of cozying up by the fire (in my case, the fire on my TV screen) with a book and a cup of something warm. It's truly my favorite time of the year! But something happens when the clock strikes midnight on Christmas Day, and a long snowy winter loses its charm immediately. I begin to dread the cold and snowfilled morning commute, or late night dog walk. The Christmas magic of Kansas City has faded, and we are left with the post-holiday blues.

With that in mind, I put together a list of my favorite three local cocktails to cope with the cold a little while longer! Just make these winter cocktails, turn up the heat and don't leave your house until spring.

Rieger Warm Vanilla Cider (Serves 6)

This one is basically a dessert. I have a HUGE sweet tooth, so really I don't think there's a bad time for dessert.

You'll need:

  • 6 cups of Louisburg Cider Mill Apple Cider
  • 2 Tbsp packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 Whole Nutmeg Seeds (I have used powder when I am being lazy - 2 Tsp = 1 Seed)
  • 1 Vanilla Bean (scrape insides)
  • 3/4 cup Rieger Whiskey
  • Whipped Cream (Garnish)
  1. Simmer all ingredients (minus whiskey) for 15 mins.
  2. Remove from heat, add whiskey, and distribute among 6 mugs.
  3. Add whipped cream on top (optional, but DEFINITELY encouraged)

Louisburg Apple Cider Old Fashioned (Single Serving)

Save some apple cider from the first recipe to please the people in your life who "claim" to not like sweets (not sure how that's possible but okay).

You'll need:

  • 1/2 tsp of sugar
  • 2 dashes of bitters
  • 4 oz Louisburg Cider Mill apple cider
  • 3oz. Tom's Town Double Oaked Bourbon
  • Ice
  • Apple slices (garnish)
  1. In serving glass, add sugar and bitters - stir to dissolve sugar.
  2. Add cider and bourbon - stir to combine
  3. Add ice, garnish and serve

Chai Tea Hot Toddy (Serves 5-6)

Personally, I am an extra-dirty chai tea kind of gal, so if that's you—make sure to brew some espresso to add at the end of this recipe! If you're serving these after dinner, you might want to leave that step out, obviously.

You'll need:

  • 6 cups water
  • 8 bags of Hugo Tea Company Chai Tea
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1tsp ground cinnamon
  • 6-8oz spiced rum
  1. Boil water, add tea bags, cover and steep for ten minutes
  2. While steeping, heat milk and sugar to a boil in a separate pot, stirring often
  3. Remove milk mixture from heat, add vanilla and cinnamon
  4. Remove tea bags, and pour tea into milk mixture
  5. Add spiced rum, stir and serve immediately

There you have it! Three local cocktails to make with Kansas City ingredients to stay warm this January. Be sure to tag on Instagram if you make any of these yourself!