It’s taken a long time, but I’ve finally reached grown-up status. I have given myself a promotion based on factor, and one factor only…I can finally say that I enjoy the taste of whiskey.
There was a particular turning point into my age of maturity (that sounds like I’m in the midst of hot flashes…still holding those off, thank goodness). It happened when I had dinner at the High West Distillery in Park City, Utah, just 40 minutes form our home. As I mentioned in this post, the High West Distillery not only makes award-winning whiskey and vodka, but also serves some incredible food.
On that first visit, it was the High West whiskey lemonade that made an impression on me and effected my ability to take a few steps without walking into the wall. When you’re 5′ 3″ and don’t drink very often, one cocktail will do that! But the flavor was perfectly boozy, with just the right amount of sweetness.
I wanted to recreate the drink at home, but now that the weather is colder, I craved something hot and comforting, infused with the flavors of the season.
I simmered freshly squeezed lemon juice with agave nectar (honey would be fine, too), fresh cranberries and a generous dose of whiskey. As the mixture simmers, the cranberries burst open and lend their distinctively tart flavor to the hot lemonade.
This recipe produces a tart drink because that’s what suits my taste buds. If you prefer something sweeter, stir in some additional agave nectar.
Hot, comfortable, flavorful…and decidedly grown up.
Other holiday cocktail recipes:
Cookin’ Canuck’s Pink Grapefruit Greyhound Cocktail
Cookin’ Canuck’s Cranberry Kamikaze Shot or Cocktail
Highwalls’ Rum Soaked Cherry Shooters
I’m Bored, Let’s Go’s Spiced Pear Martini
The Little Epicurean’s Rosemary Blackberry Limonata Cocktail
- 1 cup water
- ¾ cup fresh lemon juice
- 6 tbsp agave nectar (or more to taste)
- ⅔ cup whiskey
- 1 cinnamon stick
- ½ cup fresh cranberries
- Lemon wedges, for garnish
- Stir together the water, lemon juice and agave nectar in a medium saucepan and set over medium heat. Cook, stirring, until the agave nectar dissolves.
- Add the whiskey, cinnamon stick and cranberries. Turn down the heat slightly and simmer until the cranberries have popped, about 30 minutes. Taste and stir in more agave nectar, if desired.
- Divide into 4 glasses or mugs, and serve with lemon wedges.