7 Takes on the Hot Toddy
Beloved for chasing off chills and warding off colds, hot toddies are a favorite winter warmer. Although the classic toddy is made with little more than whiskey, lemon, honey and hot water, bartenders are experimenting with alterna-toddies that feature brandy, rum, applejack and more. Check what’s in your home bar and give these a try.
Recipe courtesy Marcel Templet, manager, The Cooper Lounge, Denver
This 1930s-style lounge uses California-made apple brandy in its toddy, presented on an elegant silver tray.
Mix together all ingredients in a footed Irish coffee glass. Garnish with orange twist.
Recipe courtesy Waldorf Astoria Chicago
The name is a nod to the main ingredient, Crown Royal Canadian Whisky, although a more populist whiskey can be subbed, if preferred.
1 cup hot water
1 chamomile tea bag
2½ ounces Crown Royal Canadian Whisky
1 ounce cassis liqueur
¼ ounce lemon juice
Lemon peel, for garnish
Steep chamomile tea bag in hot water for 5 minutes. Discard the tea bag. In a glass, combine ½ cup of the hot tea with remaining ingredients. Garnish with the lemon peel.
Recipe courtesy Tyler Voelker, bar manager, Urban Farmer Steakhouse, Portland, OR
Here, the classic toddy is made with rum (though whiskey works, too), and spiced up with cardamom syrup. Splash any leftover syrup into tea or coffee for an eye-opener.
2 ounces aged rum
1 orange peel
1 lemon peel, studded with cloves
¼ ounce cardamom syrup (Monin Spiced Brown Sugar syrup, or recipe below)
In a footed Irish coffee glass, mix all ingredients with 3 ounces of hot water.
20 cardamom pods
5 tablespoons sugar
Steep pods and sugar in 2 cups of hot water for 20 minutes. Strain into a saucepan, and simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes, or until a syrup-like consistency is achieved.
Recipe courtesy Jason Cousins, head bartender, Da Claudio, New York City
You don’t see many toddies in punch format, but that’s exactly what this is, served up in a slow-cooker and ideal for warming up chilly partygoers.
1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon whole cloves
1 cinnamon stick, plus others for garnish
4 large navel oranges
8 ounces Demerara sugar
1 750-ml bottle Tincup Whiskey
1 cup PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur
1 cup ruby Port
Seeds from 1 large pomegranate
Clove-studded orange disks, for garnish
Place the allspice, cloves and cinnamon stick in a small piece of cheesecloth. Tie with twine, creating a spice bag.
Completely peel the oranges, avoiding the white pith and juicing the remaining fruit. Reserve the juice. Add orange peels to a mixing bowl with raw sugar and muddle, grinding the sugar into the oils. Let stand for 30 minutes while the sugar pulls the oils from the peels.
Stir in 2 cups of boiling water until sugar is completely dissolved. Remove peels and add spice bag. Let sit while preparing the remaining ingredients.
Add whiskey, pomegranate liqueur, Port and 1 cup of the fresh orange juice to a slow cooker. Pour in the orange-sugar mixture and keep warm on low heat. Ladle into punch or teacups and serve, garnishing each glass with an orange disk and cinnamon stick. Makes 24 servings.
Recipe courtesy Raul Yrastorza, manager, The Chestnut Club, Santa Monica, CA
This slow sipper takes on a rosy hue, thanks to a secret ingredient: hibiscus tea.
1 hibiscus tea bag
4 whole cloves, divided
2 ounces Espolón Blanco Tequila
1 cinnamon stick
1 sprig fresh cilantro
1 orange slice
Agave nectar, optional, to taste
Steep tea bag and 3 cloves in 1 cup of hot water for 2–3 minutes. In a large glass or teacup, combine Tequila with the cinnamon stick, remaining clove, cilantro and orange slice. Remove tea bag from the hot tea, and pour over the Tequila mixture. Sweeten with agave nectar, if desired.
Recipe courtesy Francesco Palmieri, executive chef/owner, The Orange Squirrel, Bloomfield, NJ
While Palmieri usually makes his toddy from fresh pears poached in dry white wine and spices, pear juice or nectar works well, too.
3 ounces pear juice
5 pieces star anise
1 teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon allspice
2 cinnamon sticks
1½ ounces pear brandy
1½ ounces Mathilde Poire Liqueur
Pear balls, for garnish
In a saucepan, combine the pear juice and spices. Simmer for 5 minutes, then strain into a glass or mug. Stir in brandy and liqueur. Using a melon baller, create pear balls and spear with a decorative toothpick, to garnish the drink.
Recipe courtesy Seth Tabor, bartender, The John Dory Oyster Bar, New York City
This toddy has the flavors of a baked apple in a single, warming glass.
2 ounces Laird’s Applejack
¼ ounce lemon juice
¼ ounce honey syrup (3 parts honey, 1 part hot water)
¾ ounce ginger syrup (such as Monin)
Cinnamon, to top
Grated lemon zest, for garnish
Whole anise, for garnish
Cinnamon stick, for garnish
Combine first four ingredients in a glass or mug. Heat with an espresso wand and froth the top. If you don’t have access to an espresso maker, simply add 1 ounce of hot water.
Top with cinnamon and garnish with the grated zest, anise and cinnamon stick.
- 1Apple Toddy
- 2King Toddy
- 3Hot Rum Toddy
- 4Red Hot Ruby Punch
- 5Tea-quila Toddy
- 6Pear Toddy
- 7John Dory Hot Toddy