Remixed Winter Cocktails for Your Favorite Holiday Playlists
Dreary winter days don’t have to mean carbs and cabin fever. In fact, most holiday stress isn’t so bad, when you’ve got the right music playing and the right cocktail in hand. We’d prefer it if our ugly sweaters didn’t go up a size every year, so we partnered with Crook & Marker, makers of organic spiked drinks that have no sugar, no carbs, and no artificial flavors, to come up with these “remixed” cocktails — simple-to-make mixed drinks that won’t leave you feeling blah. Their line of ready-to-drink concoctions use an organic supergrain alcohol to create bold flavors that make them an ideal base for more complex-tasting yet still simple cocktails. And since there’s nothing like the right playlist to make things feel extra festive, here are our favorite pairings of guilt-free cocktails and musical moods to make your holidays merry.
For the “Finally Putting Up Decorations” PlaylistDecking the halls means putting on more upbeat Christmas tunes. And lively music calls for a lively cocktail: the Lavender Lemontini.
Crook & Marker Raspberry Lemonade
1 ounce vodka
Sprig of lavender
Directions: Mix Crook & Marker Raspberry Lemonade and vodka with ice in a shaker, strain into a martini glass. Garnish with lavender and a skewer of raspberry.
Every so often, you catch yourself with way more motivation than you know what to do with. The only solution is to turn up “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” and get in the mood to hang a lot of string lights. While lemonade is usually a summer drink, the lavender and raspberry in the Lavender Lemontini give it a cozy, winter-y flavor that will keep you going until mistletoe graces every doorway.
For the “Snowed In, But Who Cares?” Jazz PlaylistWhen the weather outside is frightful, that’s when you get to break out the cozy jazz classics. It’s also the right time to whip up the Harvest Hot Toddy.
Crook & Marker Sweet Tea
1 ounce whiskey
Directions: Heat up Crook & Marker Sweet Tea in a mug and mix in whiskey. Stir with cinnamon stick and gently float lemon on top.
This is the remixed cocktail for sitting by the fire, kicking back with some gift wrapping, and letting the snow pile up outside. Even if you don’t have a fireplace, soothing jazz tracks recreate that warm feeling pretty well. By the time January comes around, we’ll be completely tired of the snow and slush, but for now it pairs nicely with a hot drink and a day to yourself.
For the “I Miss Office Holiday Parties” PlaylistWe get it. We made fun of them, too, and now they’re gone and we miss screaming R&B at the top of our lungs. That’s where the Berry Bash comes in.
Crook & Marker Blackberry Lime
1 ounce whiskey
Directions: Muddle blackberries in a mason jar. Mix in Crook & Marker Blackberry Lime and whiskey and squeeze in lime wedge. Garnish with rosemary.
When else do you get to appreciate the classics? And by “classics” we mean the hits of the mid-90s. The Berry Bash is an ideal drink for reminiscing about parties: quick to make, fruity, and tangy, but with enough herbal notes to get you back in the Christmas party spirit, even when this year’s festivities have been moved to Zoom.
For the “Ugly Sweater” Christmas Classics PlaylistSometimes, you just need to say Feliz Navidad and get in the full Christmas spirit. Say hello to the Yule Mule.
Crook & Marker Ginger Ale
1 ounce vodka
Directions: Mix Crook & Marker Ginger Ale, vodka, and cranberries, then pour over crushed ice in a copper mug. Top with fresh mint.
Is there any flavor that says “Christmas” more than cranberry? With a festive red and green color scheme and a frosty copper mug, this drink will have you geared up for an entire month of advent calendars, tree decorating, and jamming out to Christmas tunes that everyone else already got tired of by Thanksgiving. Yes, they’re overplayed, but for a good reason. Throw on a sweater that involves bells and lights for the full experience.
For the “Post-Gifting De-stress” Acoustics PlaylistOnce you’ve run around and gotten gifts for everyone on your list, you’ll likely need a moment to savor the end of shopping. Enter: the Cherry Ole’ Fashion.
Crook & Marker Black Cherry
1 ounce bourbon
Directions: Mix Crook & Marker Black Cherry and bourbon in a lowball glass over ice. Stir with cinnamon stick and garnish with skewered cherries.
The holidays aren’t always the most relaxing time, so crossing that last name off your list calls for a celebration. The Cherry Ole Fashion is light and fruity, but still classy enough to toast with. And when paired with the proper relaxing acoustic playlist, you might actually get to start enjoying the holiday. As soon as you’re done wrapping, that is.
For the “NYE With My Pod” PlaylistLook, celebrations aren’t the same this year. But that doesn’t mean you can’t put on your favorite pump-up music and countdown to 2021 with a remixed cocktail: the Bubbly Bellini.
Crook & Marker Peach
Directions: Fill a champagne flute with ¼ Crook & Marker Peach and ¾ Champagne. Garnish with whole strawberries.
The key to any good New Year’s Eve party is the music, so curate only the hits. After being cooped up with your crew for most of the year, you should have a pretty good idea of their music tastes. And with a festive, easy-to-make cocktail to go with your celebration, you might even end up making this your new NYE tradition.
Feeling inspired? You're in luck. Crook and Marker's beverages come in plenty more varieties, including spiked sodas, tropical flavors, and more. For more info and even more cocktail ideas, check out their site.