Holiday Scotch Cocktail Cheat Sheet

Welcome to the holiday season: a time of excess spending, excess sugar, and arguably excess family time. But there are some things that wash all of these extremes down quite well. Like scotch, for instance. As Mark Twain once said, “too much of anything is bad, but too much whiskey is barely enough.”

Taking your scotch straight is always an option, but if you’re looking to make the holidays a bit more festive, dress it up with these foolproof recipes, courtesy of Dewar’s.


This zesty, bright cocktail would be the perfect accompaniment to a holiday lunch or brunch. The combination of lemon and ginger will stave off any need for an afternoon nap (but feel free to take one, anyway).

  • 1.5 parts Dewar’s 12 Blended Scotch Whiskey
  • .75 parts lemon juice
  • .75 parts honey syrup
  • 3 slices fresh ginger
  • candied ginger garnish

Method: Using a wooden muddler, muddle the fresh ginger in the bottom of a cocktail shaker until it is well-mashed. Add the blended scotch, lemon juice, and honey syrup, and fill shaker with ice. Shake until well-chilled (about 20 seconds). Strain into a rocks-filled ice glass (you may wish to double strain through a fine tea strainer to remove the small flecks of ginger), and spray the Islay scotch over the top.



This slightly sweet drink would make a fine after-dinner cocktail. The Creme du Mure gives it a holiday feel, while the blackberry freshens it up and keeps it from feeling heavy.

  • 1.5 parts Dewar’s 12 Blended Scotch Whiskey
  • .75 parts lemon juice
  • .50 parts simple syrup
  • .25 parts Creme du Mure
  • Blackberry garnish

Method: Add all ingredients (minus Creme du Mure) to the glass. Fill with crushed ice and stir. Top with more crushed ice and then drizzle creme du mure on top. Garnish with a fresh blackberry.


Welcome guests to a dinner party or holiday open house with this citrus-flavored, festive aperitif.

  • 1.5 parts Aberfeldy 12
  • Bar Spoon Heather Honey Syrup*
  • 2 dashes Angostura Bitters
  • 2 dashes Orange Bitters
  • Orange zest garnish

Method: Add honey syrup and bitters to glass, add cubed ice, add whiskey and stir. Top with more ice and stir if needed. Twist orange zest oils over the drink and garnish. A sophisticated but surprisingly simple scotch whiskey cocktail.

*Heather honey syrup recipe: 50/50 heather honey and hot water, stir and leave to chill.

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