It’s pretty clear that at Zipps Liquor, we really love our cocktails in all sizes, flavors and colors. Take a look through the Break Room, and there are few spirits we’ve left unexplored, few cocktails we haven’t dissected. The vast majority of cocktails are prepared chilled in one way or another, whether it be shaking with ice or serving in a pre-chilled glass. Sometimes, however, we don’t want to drink something cold. It might be a chilly winter night, or maybe we have a sore throat—whatever the reason, sometimes we need to drink something hot.
Luckily, craving a hot drink doesn’t mean we have to opt for non-alcoholic classics like tea and coffee every time. There are plenty of warm beverages that have a little kick behind them.
Here are a few of our favorite hot alcoholic drinks:
The hot toddy is our best friend for those cold winter nights or those dreary afternoons when you’re fighting off a cold. The origin of this hot alcoholic drink is disputed, but many say it was adopted by the British in British-controlled India from a similar beverage called a taddy. Regardless of how the concept made its way to England and Scotland, local pubs began to serve the original drink, consisting of hot water poured into scotch. Slowly, the hot water began to carry other flavors from herbs and spices.
Today, there are loads of different ways to make a hot toddy. For a classic rendition, follow these simple instructions:
- Bring ¾ of a cup of water to simmer and pour it into a mug.
- Add 1 ½ ounces of whiskey, about 2 teaspoons of honey (to taste), a splash of lemon juice, and stir together until everything is well incorporated.
- You can garnish with a wedge of lemon and some cinnamon, either ground or a full stick is fine.
Play with the proportions of these ingredients to see what you prefer. Hot toddies are completely customizable, particularly in that some people make them with rum instead of whiskey. Some even use gin. Really, any spirit with hot water can do the trick, depending on your palate. You can even swap the honey out for maple syrup. Try different variations to see what you like!
The Irish coffee is another well-known classic classically served hot. Legend has it that it was first invented at an airport by a chef who felt the need to comfort the cold, tired travelers who needed to stay overnight for their next flight. A silence fell over the room as every passenger sipped this newly discovered warm and comforting concoction. Now, the Irish coffee is a wonderful drink that’ll help you stay warm and comfortable on cold nights, and not just an excuse to have whiskey in the morning—although, admittedly…it’s a pretty good excuse.
To make the Irish coffee in the traditional fashion, you’re going to need to make some strong, black coffee. And we mean strong. It gets softer when you compose the drink, following these steps:
- Take a couple of teaspoons of brown sugar into your mug or another heat-safe container.
- Add about 4 ounces of black coffee and stir to dissolve the sugar.
- Add in 1 ½ ounces of whiskey and mix again.
- The cream is next and is a little bit tricky. You’re going to add an ounce of lightly whipped double cream, but if you add it straight in it will sink to the bottom. To avoid this, pour it slowly over the back of a spoon, and viola.
Of course, traditional Irish coffee calls for Irish whiskey, usually something bold and unapologetic like Jameson. But you can try different whiskeys to see what you like best.
Hot Buttered Bourbon
You can never have too many comfort bourbon options. Among our favorites, a well-made hot buttered bourbon is a love letter ready to entice anybody. While this drink is a little bit more complicated to make, and it requires more ingredients, the hard work of making this drink will be absolutely worth it, we promise.
To make a hot buttered bourbon, just follow these simple steps:
- To make the sugary butter mixture, you’ll need:
- ½ cup of unsalted, softened butter
- ½ cup of packed brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons of maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon of cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon of salt
- ¼ teaspoon of ground nutmeg
- and ¼ teaspoon of all spice
- Put these ingredients all into a bowl and beat it them together until the mixture is smooth.
- You can store this mixture in the fridge for a long time, it’ll be enough to make 5 or 6 servings.
- Next, bring a pot of water up to boiling.
- Put about 2 shots of bourbon into your mug, add a tablespoon or two of your mixture
- Then fill the mug with the hot water and mix it until the butter mixture has melted and dissolved.
- Top the drink with a bit of whip cream and float a stick of cinnamon on top if you’re feeling fancy.
Curl up with one of these tasty hot drinks this winter when you’re feeling like staying in rather than going out. Even better, make a big batch and share with a friend or that special someone.