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A Guide To Pairing Spirits And Cocktails With Christmas Food

By: Shireen Jamooji

christmas cocktail

 

The festive season is a time of joy, celebration, and, of course, indulgence. But one often-overlooked aspect of this culinary symphony is the harmony between spirits and cocktails with the traditional feast. Crafting the perfect pairing enhances the flavours on your plate and the overall merriment of the occasion.  

To infuse the day with warmth, laughter and boozy goodwill, try out these simple cocktail pairings for your Christmas gathering with warmth. 

Pre-Dinner Drinks

Start with a Mulled Wine cocktail to infuse the warmth of seasonal spices into your festivities. The blend of red wine, cinnamon, cloves, and citrus creates a comforting elixir that resonates with the heart of winter celebrations. Alternatively, a Gingerbread Old Fashioned made with Signature whisky adds a whimsical twist to a traditional favourite, combining the richness of gingerbread syrup with the timeless allure of bourbon.

Whether you opt for the sophistication of a stirred cocktail or the lively effervescence of a shaken one, the key is to complement the flavours of the drink with the nuances of your Christmas feast. Cocktails offer a creative canvas, allowing you to tailor each sip to the symphony of tastes that adorn your holiday table.

Starters

Choosing the right spirit to accompany your appetisers sets the stage for the culinary journey ahead. For smoked salmon canapés, consider the subtle smokiness of a good Scotch whisky. The marriage of the whisky's peaty notes with the delicate salmon creates a harmonious pairing.

Moving to vegetarian options, the crisp and herbaceous notes of Tanqueray No, Ten gin and tonic can enhance the freshness of dishes like stuffed mushrooms or caprese skewers. The effervescence of the tonic water acts as a palate cleanser, preparing your taste buds for the diverse flavours yet to come.

cocktails

Main Course

As the feast progresses to the main courses, the pairing of spirits becomes a pivotal element in the symphony of flavours. For the grandeur of a Christmas turkey, consider the robust warmth of a well-aged scotch like Johnnie Walker. The caramel and vanilla notes in the scotch complement the succulence of the turkey, creating a marriage of textures and tastes that linger on the palate.

Vegetarian mains, such as a nut roast or stuffed bell peppers, find companionship in the herbaceous embrace of a vodka-based cocktail. The clean, neutral profile of vodkas such as Ciroc allow the natural flavours of the vegetables to shine while adding a touch of sophistication to the ensemble.

Dessert

The grand finale of any festive meal is the dessert, and selecting the right spirit or digestif is akin to choosing the perfect closing note to a symphony. For the richness of a Christmas pudding, a velvety port wine offers a sweet counterpoint, enhancing the fruity and spiced notes of the dessert.

Chocolate desserts, be it a decadent yule log or individual truffles, find a harmonious partner in a well-aged rum like Captain Morgan Dark Rum. The deep, complex flavours of the rum complement the intensity of the chocolate, creating a sublime union that delights the senses.

So now that your Christmas dinner is all paired up, go and feast to your heart’s content.