Festive, Warming Drinks for the Holidays

December 27, 2014 Updated: April 17, 2015

Michael Gabriel from Rock Center Café offers recipes for a spiked hot cocoa and a hot toddy, while Scott Turnbull of Solbar at Solage Calistoga gives his recipe for something to ease the aftermath of the evening’s revelries.

Hot Cocoa
Courtesy of Michael Gabriel, Rock Center Café

3/4 cup chopped 80 percent Valrhona chocolate
3/4 cup chopped 58 percent bittersweet chocolate
2 cups milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 ounces rum
Whipped cream and chocolate shavings

In the top of a double boiler, combine the chocolates. Allow to melt over low heat. Set aside. In a separate saucepan, bring milk and cream to a boil. Once the milk-cream mixture boils, turn it off and stir the melted chocolate into the milk, using an immersion blender. Spike with the rum. Pour into mugs and serve with whipped cream and chocolate shavings.

Fireside Toddy
Courtesy of Michael Gabriel, Rock Center Café

1/4 stick of butter (room temperature)
1 pound brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground clove
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon water
1 1/2 ounces spiced rum per serving
2 cups apple cider

Place all the spices, with the butter and sugar, into a mixing bowl. Fit the mixer with the whip attachment.
On a medium speed cream the mixture together till smooth.
Set aside.
Take the 2 cups apple cider, pour into a pot and heat over a medium flame until hot.
Take a serving glass and place approximately 1 tablespoon of the reserved butter mixture into the glass.
Top with 1 1/2 ounces spiced rum, then pour a cup of hot cider on top.
Mix with a spoon until incorporated.
Then drink and enjoy.

The Morning After
Courtesy of Scott Turnbull, Solbar at Solage Calistoga

2 ounces 209 gin
2 dashes agnostura bitters
1.5 ounces sparkling water
1.5 ounces ginger beer
0.25 ounce simple syrup
Salted rim

Combine gin, bitters, and simple syrup. Shake with ice. Serve in rocks glass with salted rim. Top off with ginger beer and sparkling water.