Food & Drink

Drink This, Not That: Holiday Edition

The holidays test us all. From massive family gatherings, to the stress of picking out the right presents or outfits for holiday parties, to putting up layer upon layer of seasonal decorations—it’s enough to drain you of holiday cheer and, more importantly for those looming New Year’s resolutions, self control around calorific cocktails. Holiday shindigs can be a minefield for those watching their weight, so here are a few handy tips for picking out the right drinks for the season and your fitness. Don’t worry, there’s still plenty of seasonal tipples to be had.

Don’t Drink Eggnog, Drink Milk Punch

Eggnog, though delicious, is a holiday gut bomb. You can almost hear the scale ticking up beneath your feet as the bartender empties thick, heavy cream into your glass. Scale back the fatty dairy by swapping cream for milk—Milk Punch, that is. This cocktail of bourbon and rum is light enough for brunch, but heavy enough on the booze to get you in the holiday spirit all the same.

Don’t Drink Hot Buttered Rum, Drink a Hot Toddy

A thick blanket of snow outside could drive anyone into the cozy, fattening arms of Hot Buttered Rum. To resist the siren’s call, grab something equally warming on a cold winter’s eve. A Hot Toddy requires just a dash of honey syrup to balance the winter spices and citrus, while the whiskey warms and comforts. Leave your snow boots at the door and curl up with this tipple by the fire.

Don’t Drink a Brandy Alexander, Drink a Negroni

It’s unclear which Alexander we have to thank (or blame, if you’re trying to maintain a strict diet) for the Cognac-based dessert classic, the Brandy Alexander, but Troy Alexander of Rector’s in New York is a good bet. He premiered the cocktail back in the early 20th century, and it’s been a guilty wintertime post-dinner drink ever since. After a big holiday meal, opt for a digestif that’ll actually settle your stomach, instead of loading it with sugar. Mix up an incredibly simple Negroni, which clocks in under 200 calories, and blasts through the holiday gluttony with a hit of bitter Campari. Then pass along the healthy holiday cheer.

Don’t Drink a Peppermint Mocha, Drink an Irish Coffee

Starbucks’ frap-tastic peppermint mochas are a festive way to curb that holiday caffeine craving. But there’s a healthier way to restore energy depleted by family and feasting. Irish Coffee is the O.G. coffee cocktail for good reason. It’s just coffee, booze and a dash of sweetener—whipped cream optional.

Don’t Drink Just Any Chocolate Martini, Drink Our Upgraded Chocolate Martini

The ubiquitous, syrupy Chocolate Martini is a bit basic. If you really need some chocolate to end a festive evening, you can do better (and we can help). We fixed the Chocolate Martini, creating a version that balances the chocolate sweetness with a little bitter amaro and some spicy mole bitters. It’ll satisfy your chocolate craving without reducing you to a chocolate fiend. Celebrate with your family and ours.