Have a boozy Christmas

For me Christmas is about spending time with your family and consuming copious amounts of alcohol to cope with the ordeal. Today I will impart to you two beverage recipes as requested by my friend Mandi. Here is hoping your holidays are so lubricated that there is no other options but for things to go smoothly.

Eirlikör: German Eggnog

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This boozy little number is always a hit at parties. I make it by the gallon each year, bottling them in old wine bottles and giving them away as gifts. Because nothing shows that you care more than homemade dairy-infused hootch.

Makes about one wine bottle of eggnog


  • 1 Cup Milk
  • 1 Cup Cream
  • 5 Egg Yolks
  • ¾ C Sugar
  • 1 Vanilla Bean, split in half (or 2 tsp extract) 
  • ½ Cup of Vodka or Bourbon/Rye (depends if you prefer a stronger smokier flavor… I know I do) 
  • ½ Cup brandy (non-negotiable) 
  • Pinch of Chinese Five Spice or FRESHLY grated nutmeg


  1. Heat milk, cream sugar and vanilla bean to about 160°F (use a thermometer… be careful not to go over and ruin your milk)
  2. Beat the yolks together, add a bit of the hot milk to the yolks and stir 
  3. Add the yolks to the milk mixture in a small stream, you can use an immersion blender to make you life easier, but a whisk is fine too.
  4. Stir over low heat, making sure the temperature does not exceed 160, for 5-10 minutes.
  5. Remove the eggnog from the heat and allow to cool a little, 10 minutes. 
  6. Add the booze and stir. If you want a quick shot through the skull, go ahead and inhale those vapors, otherwise do the smart thing and don’t inhale the vapors. 
  7. Refrigerate overnight (a week is best) 
  8. Serve in martini glasses with 5 spice or grated nutmeg 

Lavender Gin Hot Toddy

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The hot toddy is a medicinal drink usually made up of a dark liquor (such as whiskey, brandy, rye or rum) mixed with hot water and honey. There are countless adaptations to this drink and this one is mine. It requires lavender syrup, which I will teach you to make first. I find the gin imparts a lightness to a drink that is usually thick. It almost feels like a tonic. Either way, nothing warms you up faster or is better on a dark snowy night than one of these babies. If you’re sick with the flu, make yourself one, it will do wonders… but just one. 

Lavender Syrup


  • 3 cups parts Sugar
  • 3 cups parts Water
  • 1 tbsp. Dried Lavender Flowers


  1. Bring the water to a boil
  2. Add sugar and mix until dissolved, reduce to low heat
  3. add lavender flowers and continue to stir until the syrup is very fragrant and takes on a golden color. 
  4. Store in a container and use as needed

Hot Toddy

Ingredients (per cup)

Okay, there no real measurements to this thing, ok? I mean I bartended for years and years before cooking so I pretty much just eyeballed this thing but if I were to guess…

  • 1 oz. Gin
  • ¾ cup White Jasmine Tea (White tea will do)
  • 1 tsp. Lavender Syrup
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick
  • Splash of Lemon Juice


Build each cup in the following order

  1. Gin
  2. Lemon Juice
  3. Lavender Syrup
  4. Tea
  5. Cinnamon Stick 
  6. Stir with the cinnamon stick and serve
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