Making Spirits Bright!

The holidays are here and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than to bring a bottle of cheer to our friends and family. Here are a few festive ideas for Christmas cocktails, bar carts, and even how to DIY your own homemade alcohol for the perfect gift to anyone on your 21 and over list!

 

 

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DIY Ginger Infused Gin Via Sugar and Charm

Giving a bottle of wine as a gift sure is easy, but this year instead of buying, DIY your own alcohol infused gin! I love this idea for so many reason. #1 it involves a mason jar. #2 it involves alcohol. And #3, its such an easy idea but will make a huge impact.  You will love doing this, and your friends will love getting this.

INGREDIENTS

  • 750ml bottle of gin 
  • 15 cardamom pods, lightly crushed
  • 1 knot ginger (about a 1″ by 4″ piece) peeled and thinly sliced

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Combine everything in a sealable container, give it a shake, and leave it in a cool dark place for 1 week.
  • Strain out the cardamom and ginger through two layers of cheesecloth, then transfer gin into gifting vessels.
  • Places like Target and Paper Source have adorable pre-made labels that would make this project even easier.
  • You can scale the recipe up or down (just double the ingredients for a 1.5L handle, etc) depending on how many you want to gift and how big your gifting vessels are — you can put them in little one cup mason jars as party favors, or gift someone an entire 750ml bottle’s worth (lucky them!).

 

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The Perfect Holiday Bar Cart via Fashionable Hostess

I love a simple classy Christmas, and this bar cart is the perfect way to achieve it. You don’t want to overload  your cart with too many decorations, because you’ll need the space for the main attractions, the cocktails!  Just adding small holiday accents is all you need to turn your cart to Christmas Chic. A few favorite items are the Metallic Nutcrackers from World Market , Gold Merry Christmas Stirrers from FranJohnson House, and Mini Faux Pine Tree by Birch Lane.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Now for a signature cocktail! I am a champagne kind of girl, and I love finding recipes that are seasonal. Here are a few that make my spirits bright! The Blackberry Thyme Sparkler via Style Me Pretty is so lovely you may not want to drink it!

Ingredients
1 c. blackberries + 8 more for garnish
1 c. Water
1 c. sugar
1 bottle of champagne
4 ounces or 1/2 c. gin
4 long sprigs of thyme
1 c. ice
gold baking sugar for the rim

Instructions
In a small saucepan, bring blackberries, water, and sugar to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, until the blackberries are soft and the simple syrup has turned to a bright pink/redish color. Remove from heat, drain blackberries, and allow to cool. This step can be done well in advance as the syrup will keep for at least a week in the refrigerator.
Prepare your champagne glasses. Okay, so here is a dirty little secret of getting those beautiful salts and sugars to stay atop the rim: butter. It adheres perfectly and you honestly never taste it. Place the tiniest amount between your fingers and rub just around the rim of the glass before dipping the glass into the gold baking sugar.
Next, begin by adding 1 ounce of gin to each champagne glass. Next drop two blackberries in each glass, followed by 2 ounces of homemade blackberry simple syrup. Fill the rest of the glass with champagne and top with a sprig of thyme in each glass. Voila!

 

24carat-1-sideThis 24 Carat Champagne cocktail via Brit + Co will give you all the holiday feels!  All you need is champagne, goldshlager, raspberries, agave and edible stars (and who doesn’t love edible stars?)  First, pour agave or simple syrup into a bowl big enough to fit the rim of your champagne glass. Dip the rim in so that the edges are syrupy. Repeat with all glasses. Now pour your edible glitter stars into a second bowl and dip each glass in. Add a splash of goldshlager, pour champagne, and top with raspberries!

 

 

 

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I always said I couldn’t resist a mason jar. Now, if you put sangria in it I’ll be jingling all the way!  A Winter Sangria, like this one from Bakeaholic Mama is guaranteed to be a crowd pleaser!

Ingredients:
1 bottle of sweet red wine
1 bottle sparkling cran-apple cider
2 clementines, sliced thin, peel on
2 granny smith apples, cored and diced
1/2 cup pomegranate arils
1 cup cranberries sliced in half
Rosemary to garnish each glass

Directions:
Mix wine, cider, and fruit in a large pitcher. Serve over ice and garnish with rosemary.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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This Raspberry Pomegranate Champagne Cocktail via Heather Christo would make anyone have a holly jolly Christmas!

Ingredients
-8 tablespooons pomegranate juice
-1 pint raspberry sorbet
-4 tablespoons pomegranate seeds
-chilled champagne
Instructions
1. Freeze your glasses until frosty.
2. Add 2 tablespoons of pomegranate juice to the bottom of each glass.
3. Add a few small scoops of the raspberry sorbet and 1 tablespoon of pomegranate seeds to each glass.
4. Top with chilled champagne. (I continued to top off the glass with more champagne as I drank, because there is more than enough sorbet to flavor several glasses full if you wish.)

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