Mulled wine, snowballs, and spiked eggnog may headline the list of festive favorites for many cocktail drinkers, but why not switch it up and greet the New Year by projecting your tropical travel resolutions?
Here are our picks of some sunny, island-inspired sips to take you into next year – and hold you over until your next sun-kissed vacation.
The Bahamas: Goombay Smash
The Goombay Smash is a rum-based cocktail with a historic pedigree in The Bahamas. While the original recipe may remain a secret, versions of the drink have spread to all of The Bahamas' major islands, impressing locals and visitors alike with its strong fruity flavor.
(Photo courtesy of The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Investments & Aviation)
Recipe for a shareable pitcher:
11 oz dark rum
11 oz light rum
11 oz coconut rum
11 oz apricot brandy
46 oz pineapple juice
Mix in a pitcher before serving over ice with a fruit garnish.
St. Martin: Guavaberry Kir
Guavaberry is one of St. Martin’s most famous flavours and exports. Boasting a complex flavour profile including woody, sweet, and spicy notes, Guavaberry is carefully cultivated on both the French and Dutch sides of the island and used in jams, spreads, and spirits.
This simple cocktail, a take on a French kir royale combining black currant liqueur and champagne, highlights the incredible flavour of St. Martin’s Guavaberry Liqueur.
(Photo courtesy Nicola Blazier / Jesson + Company Tourism Marketing)
Recipe for a glass:
1 oz St Maarten Guavaberry Liqueur
5 oz champagne
Pour pre-chilled liqueur into a frozen champagne glass. Top with chilled champagne and dress with a small curl of orange skin.
Antigua & Barbuda: Hibiscus Sangria
Nothing says lazing around in the sunshine like Sangria, which originated in the Mediterranean sun of Spain. This version, from Antigua and Barbuda in the Caribbean, draws on the local flavor of refreshing sorrel. Sorrel is a tangy, intensely aromatic brew with a trademark red colour derived from the plant of the same name - a close relative of Hibiscus. Sorrel drinks are the holiday drink in the Caribbean!
Recipe for a pitcher or punch bowl:
1 bottle of red wine
1 cup of sorrel juice
1/2 cup of hibiscus tea
1/2 cup of brandy or rum
Assorted fruits (pineapples, oranges, limes, grapes)
Brew your own hibiscus tea: place several (2-3 fresh or ¼ cup of dried flower) petals in a teapot and cover it with boiling water; allow to steep for approximately 5 minutes. Strain and bring to room temperature (preferably the tea should be chilled).
Combine red wine, sorrel juice, and hibiscus tea with brandy or rum in a large pitcher or punch bowl. Add sliced fruits of your choice to the mixture and let steep half a day before serving. When serving, include a mixture of the fruit.
(Pictured, top, image courtesy of the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority).
Hawaii: The Mai Tai
Often mistaken as Hawaiian, tiki is actually imaginary, made of a collection of romanticized concepts of Polynesian and South Seas culture, including humanoid teak carvings, coconut shell bikini tops, grass skirts, pineapples… and powerful cocktails featuring pineapple, coconut, rum, and other tropical flavors. Tiki and tiki bars have become shorthand for ‘Pacific Island getaway’ and they abound in Hawaii.
A staple in any tiki bar, the Mai Tai is the perfect Summer drink - or your drink of choice during a visit to America’s Pacific island state. You’ll be carried to Hawaii’s clear blue waters after your first sip of this fruity concoction.
(Image courtesy of Hawaii Tourism)
Recipe for a single glass:
1 oz spiced rum
1 oz coconut rum
1 tsp grenadine syrup
2 oz pineapple juice
2 oz orange juice
Combine the rums, grenadine, and juices in a cocktail mixer with ice. Shake and strain into a glass of ice. *Party Tip: make these up a pitcher at a time with a bucket of ice and garnish handy.
Garnish with wedges of fresh pineapple on a skewer topped with a cherry.
With these 4 recipes delivering up the taste of tropical travel, why not dress up in beach wear and make your NYE party tropical beach-themed!
And to actually get away from winter weather, ask us to help you plan the perfect sun-kissed, island vacation for the New Year.
Happy New Year!
Image credits as noted.
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