Ahh, Thanksgiving. Your dad is in the backyard burning the hell out of the turkey with the commercial fryer he doesn’t know how to use, your mom and sister are deep into the “marshmallow/no marshmallow” sweet potato debate, and your uncle is drinking a beer and telling your dad he’s “doing it wrong.” Yep. The holiday is humming along exactly as it should. Your job? To hit the liquor cabinet and whip up a cocktail (or three) that will get you through the next eight hours of “family time.”
Here are five cocktails perfect for Turkey Day.
The Old Thymer
Recipe from Saltbox Dining and Drinking
This is an herbal twist on the classic Old Fashioned that uses a thyme-infused simple syrup. It might sound intimidating, but once you get that simple syrup done, the cocktail is a piece of cake to make.
2 oz. Wild Turkey
3/4 oz. Thyme simple syrup
4 dashes Angostura bitters
Thyme Syrup Directions: Make the thyme syrup in advance. You’ll need a cup of water, a cup of sugar, and a pound of thyme. Bring water to a boil. Remove from heat, add sugar and stir until it dissolves. Add thyme to the mixture. Let cool, fine strain and refrigerate. The syrup will stay fresh for up to two weeks.
Cocktail Directions: Add ingredients to a mixing glass. Stir and strain into an Old Fashioned glass over a large ice cube.
This is a holiday classic, and it couldn’t be more simple to make. A Hot Toddy is basically just liquor and hot water. We chose bourbon (because we like bourbon) and spiced it up with some additives.
2 tablespoons honey
1 cup hot water
2 ounces of bourbon
Directions: Muddle the lemon in the bottom of a coffee mug and add the honey. Pour in the bourbon, hot water, and stir. Add the cinnamon sticks and enjoy.
Silver Apple Cider Punch
This is what you make if your Thanksgiving dinner is a pot luck affair. Let someone else bring the sweet potato casserole. You should bring a big bucket of liquor.
750 ml NOLET’S Silver Dry Gin
2.25L Fresh Apple Cider
2 Whole Lemons, juiced
Green Apple Wheels
Directions: Add all ingredients to a punch bowl with a large ice block. Stir well to combine. Serve over ice in a rocks glass and garnish with a thin slice of green apple.
The Negroni is a standard cocktail that should be in every person’s home bartending arsenal. This drink will satisfy your hard to please uncle as well as your hipster cousin.
1 part Campari
1 part gin
1 part vermouth Cinzano rosso
Directions: Pour all ingredients into a rocks glass with ice and garnish with a slice of orange.
Pumpkin Pie Martini
Okay, the Pumpkin Pie Martini is a little silly. Yes, it tastes like the dessert and God help you, you’d never order one of these in a bar. But it’s the holidays. Let your guard down.
2 parts RumChata
1 part vanilla vodka
1 part pumpkin syrup
Directions: Pour all ingredients into a shaker with ice and shake. Strain into a martini glass and sprinkle with cinnamon. You can add a graham cracker crust to the rim, too, if you’re feeling whimsical.