The Best Hot Cocktails for Winter

While the weather is cool, stay warm with the best hot cocktails for winter.


Whether you’re needing a go-to après-ski drink, hosting a holiday gathering, or just wanting a warm (and boozy) beverage, we’ve got you covered. Here are our favorite hot cocktail recipes that will impress and delight your friends and family this winter, no matter how cold it is outside.

Caramel Coffee Cocktail

Dorda WFH Macchiato
WFH Macchiato

This creamy, delicious cocktail is the perfect after-dinner drink in the colder months, and it’s also fabulous for après-ski. Simply mix your favorite type of coffee with Dorda Sea Salt Caramel Liqueur in a mug, then top the mixture with whipped cream to create the WFH caramel coffee cocktail. It looks and tastes great with cinnamon sprinkled on top. 

Ingredients: (Serves one)

1 oz Dorda Sea Salt Caramel Liqueur

3 oz hot black coffee

Whipped cream and cinnamon for garnish

Hot Apple Cider

Hot Apple Cider Cocktail
Hot Apple Cider

Hot apple cider is a classic winter cocktail, and for good reason. We love this version, which uses the lovely Four Roses Bourbon. It has flavors of vanilla, mint, and spice, with floral undertones. Not to mention, it mixes beautifully with apple cider. Add cinnamon sticks, orange, and cloves to create a warm, cheerful holiday cocktail. First, put your Four Roses Bourbon and apple cider in a crockpot or a pan on the stove, and heat on low for two hours. Then, make sure the liquid is hot but not boiling, and add the cinnamon stick. (Boiling liquid can bring out bitter and woody notes from the cinnamon.) Lastly, garnish each cocktail with a clove-studded orange peel for presentation. 

Ingredients: (Serves one)

2 oz Four Roses Bourbon

4 oz apple cider

1 cinnamon stick

1 orange peel for garnish

2 cloves

Buena Vista 

The Buena Vista from The Alchemists' Garden in Paso Robles
The Buena Vista

Skilled mixologists from The Alchemists’ Garden craft cocktail bar in Paso Robles, California, created this caffeinated cocktail as their take on an Irish Whiskey. It includes just three ingredients: Powers Irish Whiskey, a double shot of espresso, and lastly, boiled water. At Alchemists’ Garden, they top it with their hand-shaken Tahitian vanilla bean whipped cream, but at home, any whipped cream will do.

Ingredients: (Serves one)

2 oz Powers Irish Whiskey

2 shots fresh espresso

1 oz boiled water

2 oz whipped cream

Takasan Sake Hot Toddy

Takasan Sake Hot Toddy
Takasan Sake Hot Toddy

This cocktail is a unique take on a Hot Toddy, using sake instead of whiskey. It was created by Takasan, a notable merchant of sake, wine, and craft goods from Japan. First, muddle together the honey, yuzu juice, and ginger slices at the bottom of a glass. Then, add warmed-up sake and stir lightly. Lastly, top with a cinnamon stick and yuzu peel. Lemon juice and lemon peel will also work if you can’t find yuzu, which can be found at Asian markets. Incredible flavors of honey, cinnamon, yuzu, and ginger blend to create this sweet and spicy spirit.

Ingredients: (Serves one)

6 oz warmed-up Masumi Okuden Kantsukuri Junmai

2 tsp honey

2 tsp yuzu juice

2 slices ginger

1 toasted cinnamon stick

Yuzu peel

The Grand Hot Chocolate

The Grand Hot Chocolate by Hotel Jackson
The Grand Hot Chocolate

Hot chocolate is always a delicious holiday treat. Step it up a level with this adult version from the bar at Hotel Jackson in Jackson, Wyoming. In a medium saucepan, add milk, chocolate chips, sugar, and salt. Then, set the heat on medium-low, stirring often. Whisk the mixture until the chocolate melts thoroughly. Make sure not to let the mixture boil, as it will burn and stick to the bottom of the pan. Once it comes to a low simmer, remove the pan from the heat. Afterward, add vanilla extract and stir. Divide the hot chocolate into mugs, adding one ounce of Grand Marnier to each one. Lastly, stir a final time, and add your favorite toppings! For instance, marshmallows, whipped cream, and cinnamon are great additions.

Ingredients: (Serves three)

3 c whole milk

⅔ c semisweet chocolate chips

¼ c sugar

Pinch of salt

½ tsp vanilla

3 oz Grand Marnier (1 oz per mug)

Autumn Toddy 

Autumn Toddy

A hot toddy is the perfect cocktail to enjoy during the cold weather seasons. This recipe is an autumn favorite because of its spiciness. It’s simple to make and a great way to transition to winter and sip slowly by the fireside. First, warm your glass by filling it with boiling water. Wait a couple of minutes for it to preheat and then empty. Second, add all the remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Finally, garnish with your choice of lemon slice, whole cloves, or candied ginger. 

Ingredients: (Serves one)

4 oz boiling water  

1½ oz Redemption Bourbon  

½ oz ginger liqueur (like Domaine de Canton

¼ oz Amaro Montenegro  

¼ oz lemon juice  

¼ oz honey syrup  

2 dashes orange bitters  

Lemon slice, whole cloves, or candied ginger for garnish

Hot Buttered Dram

Dewar’s Hot Buttered Dram

This recipe is Dewar’s version of the classic hot buttered rum. It swaps rum for whisky but includes hot buttered rum batter, so it retains the same rich and creamy flavor. To make this cocktail, first add the whisky and banana liqueur in a glass and top with hot water. For the batter, add the softened butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground cloves to a mixer or glass bowl and mix until combined. Add two tbsp of batter to the whiskey and liqueur concoction and garnish with a cinnamon stick. 

Ingredients: (Serves one)

2 oz Dewar’s 12 Year Old

¾ oz Tempus Fugit Créme de Banane Liqueur

2 c softened butter

3½ c light or dark sugar

1 tbsp ground cinnamon

1 tbsp nutmeg

½ tsp ground cloves

Hot water

Cinnamon sticks for garnish

Ponche Crema

Ponche Crema

Ponche crema is a Trinidadian holiday drink that’s similar to eggnog. It is sweet and creamy with a kick of spice and is fairly easy to make. First, mix the condensed milk with water and egg yolks in a pot. Stir constantly over low heat until it has thickened slightly; a general rule of thumb is that a liquid has thickened enough when it coats the back of a spoon. Second, add in the rum and let the mixture cool down. Then, strain the liquid using a sieve. This cocktail is traditionally served cold, but like eggnog, you can enjoy this spiced drink warm. Since this recipe yields a large batch, prepare this cocktail for your loved ones and store the remainder in your refrigerator for up to a week.

Ingredients: (Serves six)

12 oz Santa Teresa Speyside Whisky Cask Finish

2 cans condensed milk

2½ c water

8 egg yolks

Pinch of nutmeg

Holiday Rum Cider

Holiday Rum Cider

If you’re looking for a large-batch cocktail to serve at a holiday gathering or dinner party, this rum cider is an excellent option. It is the perfect balance of sweetness and spice and will impress your guests. To make this recipe, combine all the ingredients in a large crystal bowl and stir. We recommend setting out pre-garnished glasses so your guests can easily serve themselves. 

Ingredients: (Serves 12)

1 gal filtered or cold-pressed apple cider 

16 oz Santa Teresa Speyside Whisky Cask Finish

¼ – ½ c brown sugar

1 tsp ground allspice

2 – 3 tsp whole cloves

2 small oranges cut in half

Cinnamon sticks for garnish

Bacardí Ocho Sevillian Orange Mulled Wine

Mulled wine is a lovely cocktail to cozy up with, and this recipe by Bacardí has a unique citrus flavor. It is traditionally a hot drink. Combine all the ingredients in a large pot on medium-low heat. Stir until the mixture is warm, and be sure that it doesn’t boil. You can serve this drink in a crystal bowl or individual glasses with an orange slice and cinnamon for garnish. While mulled wine is traditionally served warm, you have the option of enjoying this cocktail cold by simply pouring the mixed stovetop mixture over ice. 

Ingredients: (Serves 12)

8 oz Bacardí Ocho Sevillian Orange

8 oz unsweetened tea (black or chai)

8 oz red wine

4 oz cinnamon syrup

2 oz organic cranberry juice concentrate

Orange slice and ground cinnamon for garnish

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