I’ve never been big on huge parties for New Years Eve. I still love celebrating and putting on something sparkly, but I think as I get older, I like spending the holidays more intimately with close friends and family. This year, Colin and I plan to take a bottle of bourbon and our Shaker & Spoon cocktail box over to his cousin’s house in Pasadena, mix cocktails and ring in the new year with old stories, Netflix and kisses at midnight. Here are the cocktails we’ll be making – both with bourbon.
The Inca Berry Sour is a really fun drink that I’ve never had before. I’ve seen those little Inca berries before in photos and always wondered what they were. They’re really sweet, which helps balance out the strong taste of the bourbon.
These are the ingredients you’ll need:
- 3/4 oz demerara syrup
- 3 Inca berries
- 3/4 oz lemon juice
- 2 dashes Angostura bitters
- 2 oz bourbon
The Inca Berry Sour is a drink that gets muddled and shaken. Here’s how you mix it:
- Add the syrup and berries to a shaker and use a muddler to gently press the berries to the bottom. Push firmly 2-3 times. You’re going to squish them down till they pop.
- Add the bourbon, lemon juice and bitters. Fill the shaker with ice cubes and shake vigorously for 6 seconds.
Strain the contents of the shaker into a chilled glass – either a coupe glass without ice or a rocks glass with fresh cubed ice. No need for garnish. I love the rich color of this drink. And it’s really easy to make, but something about adding those berries makes this drink feel really impressive. Since there’s no garnish involved, I like serving this drink with really pretty, ornate glasses- like these gold gold dotted ones. I picked these up at TJ Maxx.
The Fire in Your Belly is a version of an Old Fashioned, with a warm, spicy kick. Perfect for this cold weather we’ve been having in California. I’ve learned that Old Fashioned cocktails are a little too strong for me, but I still like mixing and having them anyway because they feel so classy. And I totally dig the orange garnish.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1/4 oz kukicha twig syrup
- 1 dash hellfire tincture
- 3 dashes Angostura bitters
- 1 dash celery bitters
- 1 orange zest spiral
- 2 oz bourbon
The Fire in Your Belly is a drink that’s stirred and also served in either a coupe or rock glass.
- Add all of the liquid ingredients to a dry mixing glass. Fill the glass with ice and use a bar spoon to stir 20 rotations.
- Strain into a chilled coupe glass without ice or a rocks glass over fresh cubed ice.
To garnish, peel a long, think strip of orange zest. Wrap that zest in a tight spiral around the handle of your bar spoon. Gently wring it once above the glass to release the citrus oil. Then pull it off the spoon and stretch it a bit before floating it on top of the drink. As I mentioned earlier, Old Fashioned cocktails tend to be a little too strong for me, so when I made these, I served them in these shot glasses that look like mini rocks glasses. Aren’t they so adorable?? This is totally how I would serve the Fire in Your Belly cocktail to my girlfriends… so they can get a tasting of it and still have that Mad Men vibe, without feeling way overwhelmed. You can pick up these shot glasses in a pack of 6 at Cost Plus World Market.
Adorable right? Don’t feel like you have to serve it small like this- I’ll find any excuse to make something mini. I have friends from Milwaukee that can knock these back like water.
Both the Inca Berry Sour and Fire in Your Belly cocktails were made using ingredients from the Shaker & Spoon Winter Bourbon Box.
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Happy New Year guys! This is my last post for 2015. I’m so looking forward to sharing agency-related topics as well as tidbits for work life balance in 2016. Thank you so much for visiting this space – writing for you guys is really a passion of mine and I appreciate all the support and kind words you’ve given me since I started this blog. Enjoy a wonderful New Years Eve and I’ll see you next year. XO!