Winter Cocktails You Can Make At Home

Alden Wicker from Ecocult writes about the sustainable scene in NYC and beyond. She shares some of her favourite winter cocktail recipes with us here.

Like blondes, only summer cocktails seem to have all the fun. Sure, they are fruity and fresh and often have tequila (which I’ve heard makes your clothes fall off). However, when the temperatures drop, the right cocktail will turn the scene from shivery and sad into warm and cozy. Yup, these brunettes have depth, character, and are fun to snuggle with.

COCKTAILS. I meant cocktails.

Anyway, I found some recipes and adapted them for those of you who enjoy your drinks organic, fresh, and from locally sourced ingredients. For all three of these recipes, here are all the simple ingredients you’ll need to buy or have on hand:

Liquor Store:

Diplomatico rum. The reason why I like this rum is two-fold. First, it’s Venezuelan, like my fiancé. Second, it is the sixth liquor company in the world to attain the ISO 14001 certification for environmental awareness. Diplomático reclaims 100% of wastewater from its distillery, which is then converted into fertilizer for the sugar cane plants. The distillery recycles 100% of its solid waste and also participates in beach cleaning and tree planting. Once I found out about this rum, I started seeing it not just at the restaurant Caracas Arepa Bar, but even at the bar/club on our corner, Black Flamingo, which has become a favorite of our friends for serving up both excellent house music and, remarkably, delicious vegetarian, Latin food. In short, Diplomatico is for those with good taste – the sustainability element is just a perk.

Grocery Store:

Urban Moonshine Citrus Digestive Bitters. Urban Moonshine’s Digestive Bitters are an update to traditional bitters formulas, made with certified organic ingredients, and gluten-free. It’s meant to help your digestion before or after meals, or to curb sugar cravings, but they can certainly also be used for cocktails! This one has ingredients like dandelion root and leaf, burdock root, orange peel, fennel seed, ginger root, and other plant ingredients. It’s carried at Whole Foods and other fancy food purveyors. Find a place near you here or order online.

• lemons
• club soda
• cinnamon
• nutmeg
• coriander
• salt
• brown sugar

Farmer’s Market:

• thyme
• honey
• apple cider
• apples
• butter

Cider Rum Punchcider-rum-punch-recipe

This fancy update of spiked cider is refreshing and a bit sweet. The honey instead of sugar gives it a smokier flavor that seems more appropriate for the season.

Serves 6
adapted from Verses From My Kitchen


• 8 ounces Diplomatico dark rum
• 3 ounces freshly squeezed lemon juice
• 12 sprigs of farmer’s market thyme
• 1 3/4 cups farmer’s market honey
• 12 ounces farmer’s market apple cider
• 4 ounces club soda
• 8 dashes of orange or Angostura bitters
• 1 farmer’s market apple, sliced thincider-rum-punch-ingredients


To make thyme simple syrup, combine 1 3/4 cups honey, 2 cups of water and 6 thyme sprigs in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring up to a boil and reduce to simmer for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and place the syrup in the fridge to cool.

Place all the ingredients in a large pitcher or carafe with ice and stir. Fill glasses with crushed ice and fill. Place a sprig of thyme inside and put an apple wheel on the rim.

Cider Rum Punch: The Lazy Version


• 8 ounces Diplomatico rum
• 12 ounces farmer’s market apple cider
• 8 dashes of orange or Angostura bitters
• Cinnamon
• Nutmeg


Pour rum, apple cider, and bitters into bowl or pitcher. Fill glasses with crushed ice and fill. Top each glass with a tiny pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg.

Hot Buttered Rum

You can make the sweet, spicy, and buttery flavor log ahead of time and freeze it for two weeks. Whenever you want a hot buttered rum, just take a spoonful and drop it in a mug, add rum, and pour hot water over it.

adapted from Not Without Salt


• 1 teaspoon cinnamon
• 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
• 1/4 teaspoon cardamom
• 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
• 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted farmer’s market butter, soft
• 2 cups dark brown sugar
• Diplomatico rum
• hot water



Cream together the butter, spices and sugar. Spread it out on a sheet of parchment paper and roll it into a log, sort of like the cookie dough log you can buy from the store. Cover well and refrigerate or freeze for later use. In the fridge the mixture will keep for two weeks, in the freezer a couple of months.

When serving drinks: In a mug add a tablespoon of the butter and sugar mixture. Top with a couple ounces of rum and roughly 1/2 cup of hot water. The ratio of the ingredients is up to your preference, whether you’re a sweet tooth or want to enjoy the taste of your rum!sugar-and-spice-log

See the recipe for “Grandma’s Remedy” on Ecocult’s original post.



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