Salt & Wind Travel

Sure you can always serve a ton of bubbly and beer and everyone will be very happy partiers.

But there are those times you should pull out something special and there’s no time like the holidays to bring it. Be it served in a punch bowl, a fancified glass of bubbles, or served straight up, this list has something for everyone. 

Armed with this list of 20 terrific tipples in your cocktail arsenal, you’ll shake things up, be the perfect party host, or just take the edge off the holiday season.

Opening photo by Cameron Whitman

pomegranate st germain cocktail recipe v

Pomegranate Ginger Sparkler Cocktail

With a hint of spicy ginger liqueur and a dash of fresh pomegranate seeds, this cocktail couldn’t be simpler or more festive.

salt and wind golden night cocktail recipe v

The Golden Night Cocktail

Originally crafted for the Golden Globes, this sparkling cocktail brings a little spice, a nice pear flavor, and a whole lot of glam.

010115 oscar buzz cocktail recipe v scaled

Oscar Buzz Cocktail

Another cocktail crafted for Awards season, here bubbles are dressed up for the holidays a spiced blood orange syrup.

fall white wine sangria recipe v

San Sebastián White Wine Sangria

Like punch’s more chill sibling, sangria is always wecome at any party. This white version with apples, cinnamon, and citrus is as appropriate at a Fall dinner as it is at a holiday cocktail party.

smoked whiskey apple cider recipes

Smoked Whiskey Apple Cider Cocktail

Speaking of punch, this whiskey punch — with apple cider, smoky lapsang souchong tea, citrus, cloves — brings all the holiday feels.

pomegranate apple cider ginger punch recipe v 1

Pomegranate Ginger Apple Cider Punch

If you want a punch that’s just as festive but lighter this is it. Here we combine pomegranate and apples in this punch that has been a major favorite this year. Pull out the vintage glassware and make a pomegranate seed ice mold and you’ll be the mose festive hostess around.

classic negroni sbagliato cocktail recipe v 1

Classic Negroni Sbagliato Cocktail

The classic Negroni is a drink every cocktail lover should know. Bitter, sweet and appropriately boozy, it’s a balanced cocktail that’s as sophisticated as it is season-less. But during the holidays we swap the gin for bubbles because we love sparkling wine in the wintertime. And because it can be made in batches so you don’t have to sit by the bar all night.

salt and wind man of war cocktail recipe v scaled

The Man O’ War Cocktail

For something a little less obvious, turn to the classic whiskey cocktail, The Man O’ War. Named after a race horse, this cocktail is usually served during the Triple Crown but we like it any time of year.

pomengranate daiquiri number 3 recipe v

Pomegranate Daiquiri Number 3

Another cocktail you don’t see much this season? Daiquiris. An, honestly, we’re not sure why. Give your favorite beach vacay cocktail a definitive wintry twist thanks to the addition of pomegranates.

ciderhouse pear 2

Ciderhouse Pear Cocktail

If you just can’t handle anymore apple anything but still love cider, check out this pear cider cocktail. Made with spiced pear liqueur, whiskey, and a flamed orange, one sip will transport you to the days of yore (even if we’re not entirely sure when yore was)!

sage bees knees cocktail recipe v1 scaled

Sage Bee’s Knees Cocktail

If sage if your thing, you’re going to want to give this sage twist on this classic cocktail a go. Just know this is best made to order so plan on serving this for a smaller gathering so you’re not playing bartender all night.

gin and tonic recipe v

Spanish Citrus Gin and Tonic Cocktail

When it comes to gin, there’s nothing more classic than a gin and tonic. And when made the Spanish way — with tons of ice in a balloon glass with lots of quality tonic — it feels more festive than ever.

aida mollenkamp horchata cocktail recipe v 1

Spiked Horchata Latte Cocktail

Sometimes you need to pull out a total wild card cocktail and that’s when this Spiked Horchata Latte Cocktail is in order. Made with homemade spiced horchata, coffee liqueur, and tequila, this is the drink a White Russian wished it could be.

charred citrus margarita recipe v

Charred Citrus Margarita Cocktail

Charring the citrus gives this classic cockail a more complex note. And, if you really wanted to up the smokiness and char, you could make it with mezcal instead of the tequila.

cranberry pear bourbon cocktail recipe v

Spiced Cranberry Pear Bourbon Cocktail

Yes, this is best when made with the St. George Spirits Spiced Pear Liqueur so it’s a super specific cocktail. However, that liqueur is one of our favorite spirits for holiday cocktails so we encourage you to buy a bottle!

friends who fete last minute holiday party eggnog italian soda recipe 1 1

Rum-Spiked Eggnog Italian Soda Cocktail

When you don’t have time to make Aged eggnog or you just want something a little lighter, this rum-spiked soda is pretty much perfect!

old fashioned cocktail pour 1

Classic Old Fashioned Cocktail

To us, each of the most classic cocktails has an ideal setting in which to imbibe it. By our calcuations Margaritas are best during warm weather, Bloody Mary cocktails alongside a brunch, and Old Fashioned cocktails? Pretty much anytime a fire is roaring, snow is falling, and the ambiance is cozy, we want one of these in our hand.

persimmon old fashioned recipe v 6 1

Spiced Persimmon Old Fashioned Cocktail

Hang around here long enough and you’ll quickly notice that we L-O-V-E us some persimmons. And when we get our hands on extra ripe hachiya persimmons, we make sure to stir up a few of these cinnamon-spiced and citrus-laced Old Fashioned cocktails.

appetizers for cocktail party

Now that you’ve decided on a cocktail or two, may we suggest a few apps for your festivities?

Connect With Salt & Wind Travel

More on Salt & Wind Travel

This post may contain affiliate links. Please refer to our privacy policy.

About The Author


We'll help you taste Italy Mexico California Hawaii Mexico France Spain the world

Food Focused Experiences

We specialize in food-focused experiences in the most interesting culinary regions of the world.

Curated Group Trips

We host trips to Italy and Mexico to the regions of Lombardy, Mexico City, and Oaxaca.

Personalized Itineraries

Our services are tailored to meet your needs and make sure you make the most of your trip.