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Hot cocktail

From hot toddies to mulled wine, here are your 5 new favorite warm cocktails

In case you haven't noticed, it's finally starting to feel more like winter around here. And with the chillier weather come cold-weather cocktails designed to warm you from the inside out. Whether you're a hot toddy purist or a lover of Irish coffee, these five warm cocktail recipes will be sure to please. Pull out your mugs — it's five o'clock somewhere, right? Click the arrows above to see all of the recipes.

Photo: Dave Michuda/Unsplash

Homemade mulled apple cider

Homemade Mulled Apple Cider

This contest-winning cider recipe is full of warm spice and fresh apple flavor. In fact, we like the cider so much that we'll even drink this one sans bourbon. If, however, you'd like to make the drink adults-only, stir in 4 ounces of whiskey to the strained cider, along with a little extra sugar for balance.
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Photo: Ramona King



Wassail, a traditional warm holiday punch, combines lager, dark rum, lemon juice and ginger. The name means "be in good health." It is associated with New Year's celebrations and with the Christmas traditions of caroling or "wassailing." most famously in the Christmas carol "The Wassail Song." In the song, the "wassail" refers to good wishes, not to the beverage, but tradition has it that carolers might hope to be rewarded with a bowl of wassail to drink.
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Stoneware & Co mugs and pitcher

And for that mulled cider: Stoneware & Co. mugs

Coffee, tea, hot chocolate, cider, hot toddies and other warm drinks are all even more enjoyable when sipped out of this hand-crafted cylindrical mug from Stoneware & Co. Made with the simple, clean lines of the Louisville Pottery Collection, each mug has stay-cool handles lovingly applied by hand.
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Photo: Maura Friedman

Charleston breakfast coffee

Charleston Breakfast Coffee

This warming cocktail from columnist Jerry Slater is a Southerner's take on Irish coffee, richer and more grain-forward in flavor, with a bonus of being made with local whiskey. Feel free to adapt the recipe below to suit your coffee and whiskey preferences — you are, after all, the crafter of your coffee cocktail.
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Photo: Jerry Slater

Hot spiced wine

Anne Byrn's Hot Spiced Wine

This hot spiced wine, from award winning cookbook author Anne Byrn, is a quick and tasty way to turn a simple bottle of red wine on your shelf into a holiday punch. Let the mulling spices perfume the orange juice and water, and then add the red wine. Heat, but don't boil. Pour into cut-glass punch cups and serve with plenty of citrus slices.
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Photo: Danielle Atkins

Hot toddy

Simple Hot Toddy

Simple is best when it comes to a soul-warming hot toddy. In fact, we like our toddies so simple, we barely need a recipe. First, combine about two ounces (or two fingers) or bourbon or rye whiskey with a squirt of honey in your favorite mug. Heat a kettle of water to a boil and then pour it over the whiskey, stirring to dissolve the honey. Finally, add a slice of lemon on top, and a few dashes of bitters if you'd like, and you're ready to drink. (Maybe let it cool for a minute first.)

Photo: L.A. Foodie/Flickr (license)

Author image

Kate Williams is the former editor-in-chief of Southern Kitchen. She was also the on-air personality on our podcast, Sunday Supper. She's worked in food since 2009, including a two-year stint at America’s Test Kitchen. Kate has been a personal chef, recipe developer, the food editor at a hyperlocal news site in Berkeley and a freelance writer for publications such as Serious Eats, Anova Culinary, The Cook’s Cook and Berkeleyside. Kate is also an avid rock climber and occasionally dabbles in long-distance running. She makes a mean peach pie and likes her bourbon neat.