Hot Chocolate — Photo courtesy of avlxyz
After a day spent on the hills at a great ski resort, when your body is cold and sore, there’s nothing like relaxing indoors with friends or family, and an après-ski drink or two. These classic drinks have been enjoyed for generations, après-ski and in other cold weather occasions.
A hot toddy is one measure of liquor placed in a mug with spices such as cinnamon and cloves, topped with boiled water and often served with a squeeze of lemon. While whiskey is traditionally the alcohol of choice in toddy – Scotch or Irish whiskey in the U.K., bourbon in the U.S. – variations include brandy or tequila.
There are endless store-bought options for hot chocolate, but after a day skiing Aspen or Whistler Blackcomb, why not kick back with your own luxurious version? All you need is a pot, some milk or cream, good quality dark or milk chocolate, and maybe some spices such as cinnamon and chili for an extra kick of heat. Bring the milk or cream to a simmer, add in chocolate and spices, and whisk slowly until chocolate is melted and all the ingredients are combined.
An Irish Coffee contains four parts hot coffee, two parts Irish whiskey, a teaspoon of sugar and one-and-a-half parts cream. The original recipe, which dates back to the 1940s, calls for regular cream, though many modern takes on this drink instead top it with whipped cream.
Irish Coffee — Photo courtesy of Jules / Stone Soup
Simple and straightforward, a finger or two of a good Scotch whiskey has a way of warming the mouth, throat and stomach in a way no hot drink can. After a day on the hills, a peaty Scotch, like those from the Islay region of Scotland, offer a smoky flavour that can make you think you’re sitting by a roaring fire even if you’re not.
The official state beverage of New Hampshire, apple cider is unsweetened and unfiltered. It’s popular from fall harvest season through the winter, and is often served heated with cinnamon and cloves, making it a perfect non-alcoholic choice to fight an après ski chill.
A White Russian is made with two parts vodka and one part coffee liqueur, such as Kahlua, added to a short cocktail glass filled with ice, and topped with cream or milk. While not Russian in origin, the drink (and the dairy-free version known as the Black Russian) is so named due to vodka being a primary ingredient.
White Russian — Photo courtesy of Morten
Hot Buttered Rum
Hot buttered rum has been a popular winter tipple in the U.S. since colonial days, when rum was easily accessed from the Caribbean. The common recipe for this drink involves placing a teaspoon of brown sugar into a mug and stirring in four ounces of hot water, adding two ounces of rum and floating a tablespoon of butter on top. Top with grated cinnamon or nutmeg.
Few cocktails are as perfectly warming as a well-made Manhattan. It combines whiskey (traditionally rye, but bourbon is often used instead today), vermouth (sweet red vermouth is traditional, but dry white vermouth is also acceptable) and a few dashes of bitters, stirred in a cocktail glass.
Manhattan — Photo courtesy of Tallertallguy
This cocktail combines Scotch whiskey with Drambuie – a liqueur made with malt whiskey, honey herbs and spices – over ice. Depending on the balance of Scotch and Drambuie used – there’s no agreed-upon measurement for a Rusty Nail – either the warming hit from the Scotch or the sweetness of the Drambuie will dominate the flavour.
Rusty Nail — Photo courtesy of John Phelan
Flips are a class of cocktail very similar to traditional eggnog, in that both contain an alcoholic spirit, whole egg, sugar and spices such as nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon. But unlike eggnog, flips contain no cream. Instead, the ingredients are shaken together over ice, which chills the drink and produces a frothy consistency and a smooth, silky mouth feel. The spirit – brandy or otherwise – adds a pleasing, warming element to the flip. What better way to top off a day of skiing than by relaxing with a drink that leaves you feeling soothed all over?