Mistletoe & Wine

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Cocktail History

The Mistletoe & Wine is a Sips From Scripts original cocktail that we created for Denis Gor, a sommelier from Louisville, Kentucky and our 2022 Secret Santa. For this year’s challenge, we were told to create a recipe that was inspired by the Christmas song of our choice. We went with “Mistletoe & Wine” by Cliff Richard as a nod to our Secret Santa’s profession and decided to pair a whiskey and dark red port wine base with maple, Amaro Braulio, and nutty bitters in a creamy dessert drink template.

Cocktail Ingredients

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Half & Half: This is a dairy product made with equal parts milk and cream. We used Prairie Farm Half & Half.

Bourbon: This is one of the base spirits. It’s a type of American whiskey typically made with corn. We used Knob Creek 9 Year Kentucky Straight Bourbon because it’s rich and full bodied with notes of smooth vanilla and caramel. For a low-proof version of this drink, try Spiritless Kentucky 74 in place of the bourbon.

Ruby Port Wine: This is the other base spirit. It’s a type of sweet fortified red wine made in Portugal. We used Cockburn’s Ruby Port because it has a full-bodied flavor with notes of cranberry, strawberry, raspberry, toast, and caramel.

Maple Syrup: This is a syrup made with the sap from maple trees. We used a local maple syrup.

Amaro Braulio: This is an Italian liqueur made with bitter orange, herbs, botanicals, and florals.

Black Walnut Bitters: This is a type of spirit infused with black walnuts and other botanicals. We used Fee Brothers Bitters Black Walnut Bitters.

Grated Nutmeg: This is the garnish. It’s sprinkled on top to add nutmeg aroma and flavor.

Tasting Notes

The Mistletoe & Wine begins with aromas of nutmeg and port and has a smooth, thick mouthfeel that features sweet cream, maple, and sharp port flavors with a finish that combines maple, bourbon, and wine, all with a unique herbal menthol aftertaste. 

Our Opinion of This Cocktail Recipe: We were both as keen on the drink as we were the the catchy Christmas song that inspired it. Its unique herbal complexity is only slightly challenging to the palate and is a perfect pairing for the sweetness of the other ingredients. We’ll be making this one again come the holidays!

Which of our palates is yours most like?
Find out if your palate is most similar to Alex’s or Kendall’s by answering five questions.

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Which of our palates is yours most like?
Find out if your palate is most similar to Alex’s or Kendall’s by answering five questions.

Take Our Quiz →

Alex’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
“Given our Secret Santa’s profession, I knew wine had to be a component of this drink, so I did a Google search for ‘Christmas songs with wine’ and came across Cliff Richard’s hit. After several iterations, I decided that a dessert drink mixed with ruby port would be a winner. The bourbon also provides a slightly spicy and malty body, while the Amaro Braulio steals the show with its herbal blend and menthol flavor. The recipe, while sweet, is on the ‘serious’ side, featuring a mixture of flavors we both loved.”

Kendall’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
“I really had no idea what to expect of a whiskey, port wine, and herbal amaro combination for a Christmas cocktail, but I can honestly say this drink is a creamy and complex delight. The wine’s flavor is nicely rounded out by a nuttiness thanks to the bitters and garnish, there’s a twinge of amaro on the tongue, and the bourbon is masked far more than I thought it would be. It all works together really well, and I think Alex knocked this interpretation out of the park flavor-wise. Yummy!”

Recipe

AuthorSips From Scripts

Yields1 ServingPrep Time5 mins

Ingredients
 2 oz Half & Half
 1 ½ oz Bourbon
 ¾ oz Ruby Port
 ½ oz Maple Syrup
 ¼ oz Amaro Braulio
 1 dash Black Walnut Bitters
 Grated Nutmeg

Method
1

Add half & half, bourbon, wine, maple syrup, amaro, bitters, and ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Strain into an Irish coffee mug.

4

Garnish with grated nutmeg.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 2 oz Half & Half
 1 ½ oz Bourbon
 ¾ oz Ruby Port
 ½ oz Maple Syrup
 ¼ oz Amaro Braulio
 1 dash Black Walnut Bitters
 Grated Nutmeg

Directions

Method
1

Add half & half, bourbon, wine, maple syrup, amaro, bitters, and ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Strain into an Irish coffee mug.

4

Garnish with grated nutmeg.

Mistletoe & Wine

Make It a Mocktail: Use Spiritless Kentucky 74 in place of the bourbon to try a low-proof version of this drink.

Tools & Glassware We Recommend

Sale
SET of 4, Libbey 8054 6 oz. Georgian Irish Coffee Glass w/ Signature Party Picks
SET of 4, Libbey 8054 6 oz. Georgian Irish Coffee Glass w/ Signature Party Picks
Traditional irish coffee glass design; Decorative pedestal foot; Elegant flared bowl; Made of durable, crystal clear glass; Designed to provide optimum clarity and brilliance
$32.90
Libbey Irish Coffee Mug, 1 Count (Pack of 1), Clear
Libbey Irish Coffee Mug, 1 Count (Pack of 1), Clear
Twelve 8-1/2-ounce clear glass irish coffee mugs; Dishwasher safe; Made in usa
$35.88
Libbey 10.5 Oz. Irish Coffee Mug(pack of 12)
Libbey 10.5 Oz. Irish Coffee Mug(pack of 12)
Capacity: 10.5 Oz.; Height: 5″; Top Diameter: 3-1/16″; Bottom Diameter: 2-3/4″; Maximum Diameter: 4-1/4″
$30.89
Libbey 8-1/2-Ounce Irish Coffee Mug, 4-Piece Set
Libbey 8-1/2-Ounce Irish Coffee Mug, 4-Piece Set
Four 8-1/2-ounce clear irish coffee mugs 5 7/8-inch tall; Material: glass; Dishwasher safe
$28.00
OXO Good Grips Silicone Everyday Ladle
OXO Good Grips Silicone Everyday Ladle
Flexible ladle conforms to curves to scrape up every bit of sauce for serving; High heat-resistant silicone is gentle on non-stick surfaces
$13.95
NEW OXO Good Grips Grater, Black
NEW OXO Good Grips Grater, Black
Sharp, bi-directional, stainless steel grating surface for fast, easy grating; Non-slip foot provides control while grating
$11.95

More Christmas Cocktails

If you like this Christmas-inspired cocktail recipe, here are a few others we’ve tried that you may enjoy:

The Little Donkey Cocktail Recipe

The Little Donkey: A vodka cocktail made with gingerbread syrup, lime juice, ginger beer, and a cinnamon stick

Cranberry Cobbler Cocktail Recipe

Cranberry Cobbler: A sherry cocktail made with cranberry syrup, orange slices, a mint sprig, and cranberries

Poinsettia Cooler Cocktail Recipe

Poinsettia Cooler: A tequila cocktail made with cranberry juice, cranberry shrub, lime juice, and cranberries

Kohler Mint Cocoa Cocktail Recipe

Kohler Mint Cocoa: A chocolate mint brandy cocktail made with milk, white peppermint schnapps, dark crème de cacao, cocoa powder, whipped cream, and grated chocolate

This post contains affiliate links, meaning we make a small commission each time you purchase a product using our links. Product images sourced from Amazon Product Advertising API. Amazon affiliate links last updated on 2023-01-31.

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