Toad Holiday Cocktails

Recently on an all-company virtual meeting (aka All Toad), we shared our favorite holiday sips to get us in the seasonal mood. The ideas were so delicious we decided we had to share them with you too. Bottoms up, friends.

Sarah P’s Mapletini:

  • • 2 shots Irish cream
  • • 1 shot brandy
  • • 1/2 shot cinnamon schnapps
  • • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • • Cinnamon stick for garnish

 

  1. 1. Combine all ingredients, shake ’em up. 
  2. 2. Pour into a chilled martini glass, straining out the ice. Garnish with a cinnamon stick. 
  3. 3. Don’t plan any big activities for the next day.

 

Tessa’s Apple Pie Kombucha with a twist:
 
  • • Apple pie kombucha
  • • Whiskey
  • • If you don’t have apple pie kombucha or whiskey, try any kind of kombucha with champagne as a mimosa substitute. We’re not picky here.

 

  1. 1. Combine.
  2. 2. If you don’t have apple pie kombucha or whiskey, try any kind of kombucha with champagne as a mimosa substitute. We’re not picky here.

 

Prabhav’s Holiday Old Fashioned

  • • Bulleit Rye
  • • 2 – 3 dashes of Angostura bitters
  • • Cube of sugar
  • • Orange peel zest for garnish

 

  1. 1. Combine ingredients and garnish with orange peel zest.
  2. 2. Use whiskey stones instead of ice (this is key).  

 

Gordon’s Irish Coffee:

  • • Coffee
  • • Jameson
  • • Bailey’s

 

  1. 1. Keep it simple. Add Jameson and Bailey’s to your coffee, it’s all you need. 

 

Holly’s Mulled Wine

  • • 1 bottle of Merlot of Cabernet Sauvignon (a dry red wine)
  • • 1 orange
  • • 10 cloves
  • • 1 cardamom pod
  • • 2 star annise
  • • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • • 1 1/2 cups apple cider
  • • 2-4 tablespoons of honey or maple syrup
  • • Optional: 1 cup of tawny Port or brandy

 

  1. 1. Combine ingredients, bring to a boil.
  2. 2. Simmer over low heat for 10 minutes. 
  3. 3. Pour into mugs, add an orange peel to each, and serve.
  4. 4. Makes the house smell amazing no matter what. 

 

Mollie’s Naughty Chai Latte

  • • Chai tea
  • • Milk or milk substitute
  • • Irish Crème Liquor
  1. 1. Brew some Chai tea.
  2. 2. Heat one part milk (or milk substitute) and one part Irish Crème Liquor until steamy, then froth until it reaches a foamy consistency. 
  3. 3. Pour the boozy froth into your tea like a holiday boss. 

 

Lucinda’s Persimmon Martinis

  • • 4 persimmons
  • • 1 lemon
  • • 1 – 1 1/2 inches peeled ginger
  • • 2 teaspoons agave nectar
  • • Vodka

 

  1. 1. Quarter the persimmons and peel the lemon. Juice persimmons, lemon, and ginger.
  2. 2. For each drink, combine 4 oz of juice mixture, 1 teaspoon agave nectar, 1 1/2 oz of vodka (or more), and shake it up with plenty of ice.
  3. 3. Strain into a chilled martini glass. 

 

Steve’s Maple Bourbon Smash
 
  • • 1 lemon
  • • 2 oz bourbon
  • • 1 oz maple syrup
  • • Fresh sage leaves

 

  1. 1. Slice lemon and put 3 slices in a cocktail shaker. 
  2. 2. Cover with 2 oz bourbon and 1 oz maple syrup, plus a sprig of sage. Muddle.
  3. 3. Add 1 oz fresh lemon juice, fill with ice, and shake until chilled.
  4. 4. Strain into a rocks glass with ice, garnish with lemon and more sage. 

Watch This, Drink That: Holiday Movie Drinking Games

Nothing gets us in the holiday spirit like a festive cocktail and a good holiday flick (and maybe a Cashmoore Blanket). Gather your bar cart, light a fire, and curl up – we’ve got your holiday couch agenda covered with our favorite drinking games for Christmas and holiday movies. As always, drink responsibly and refrain from operating sleighs after consumption.

Watch: Elf – Released over 15 years ago (Yikes, we know – take a drink for that), this cheery comedy is one of our Yuletide faves. Will Ferrell as the tallest, most enthusiastic elf-slash-human, can do no wrong.

Drink: Spiked egg nog, with a dash of maple syrup. Drink every time Buddy the Elf refers to himself in the third person, every time sugar is referenced, and every time you hear a holiday-friendly alternative to a swear or an insult.

New Line Cinema, via Giphy

Watch: The Santa Clause – Despite the fact that things start out a little dark (Let’s not forget this movie begins with Santa’s traumatic fall off the roof), things quickly turn around and The Santa Clause is a true holiday classic.

Drink: Hot cocoa (with peppermint schnapps). Not too hot. Extra chocolate. Shaken, not stirred. Drink every time Tim Allen raises his eyebrows, every time Neil rocks an awful (but also kind of awesome) sweater, and every time someone mentions The North Pole.

Walt Disney Pictures, via Giphy

Watch: The Holiday – Filled with adorable (and OK, totally unrealistic) meet cutes, Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet’s life swap turned love story gets us in the spirit to celebrate “being young and being alive” year after year.

Drink: A champagne toast. Drink every time you catch yourself staring at Jude Law, every time someone cries, and finish your drink when you get on Airbnb to look for holiday homes.

Watch: Home Alone – Kevin McAllister, master of booby traps, makes a left-home-alone-holiday look equal parts amazing and terrifying.

Drink: Pepsi with a shot of whiskey. For the Home Alone drinking game, drink every time Kevin McAllister talks to himself (can’t say we blame him), every time Harry’s (aka Joe Pesci) gold tooth sparkles, and every time someone runs panicked through an airport.

Twentieth Century Fox, via Giphy

Watch: Bridget Jones’s Diary – A hilarious adaptation of the novel, Renée Zellweger as Bridget Jones makes us all feel a little bit better about our own lives during the holidays.

Drink: A bottle of whatever is in the fridge. No time for judgment here. Drink every time there’s an expletive, every time Bridget drops some shade, and every time you see your favorite reindeer jumper.

Miramax, via Giphy

Watch: Die Hard – This 1988 action thriller was voted the greatest Christmas movie by readers of British film magazine Empire in 2015. Enough said.

Drink: Straight Vodka. Drink every time someone says, “This isn’t a Christmas movie,” every time there’s a reference to Christmas (to prove your point), and take a shot in Alan Rickman’s honor whenever you feel like it.

Watch: Love Actually – Nine stories intertwine to bring us a watch-every-year-and-it-never-gets-old holiday favorite. Plus, Hugh Grant dancing.

Drink: Mulled Wine (a favorite, easy recipe here). Drink every time you hear the smash-hit “Christmas is All Around,” every time someone orchestrates a big romantic gesture, and every time Sarah’s (Laura Linney) phone rings. When you’re through with the Love Actually drinking game, you’ll likely be dancing along.

Universal Pictures, via Giphy

Watch: A Very Murray Christmas – Because there’s never a bad moment for some quality time with Mr. Murray, and this eclectic musical comedy includes a lengthy list of guest appearances (George Clooney, Jason Schwartzman, Miley Cyrus, Maya Rudolph, the list goes on…)

Drink: A strong martini. Bonus points if you’ve got a white piano to sit atop. Drink every time a new celeb makes a cameo (don’t plan on driving anywhere after this game).

Watch: How the Grinch Stole Christmas – The first Dr. Seuss book to be adapted into a full-length feature film, this unexpectedly heartwarming holiday favorite reminds us that Christmas “doesn’t come from a store,” and that The Grinch drinking game is always a good idea.

Drink: The Santa Shot. 1 part grenadine syrup, 1 part green creme de menthe, 1 part peppermint schnapps (recipe here). Drink every time The Grinch accidentally rhymes, has a fleeting moment of feeling, and every time Cindy Lou Who visits Mount Crumpit. Finish your drink when The Grinch’s heart grows.

Universal Pictures, via Giphy

The Holiday Starter Pack

 

Well folks, it’s November. Tis the season for comfort food and flannels, lounging around, facing the elements, and knockin’ a few back with old friends. However you holiday, it’s time to belly up. We’re just here to get ya started. Here’s what you need to get your holiday season off to a running start.

Slow Cookin’ Tunes
It all starts with good food. But good food starts with a swingin’ kitchen. Keep the kitchen crew groovin’ with our Slow Cookin Tunes playlist – consider it food for the soul (without the dishes part). Add these to your holiday playlist:

Build Me Up, Buttercup – The Foundations
Mess Around – Ray Charles
Mashed Potato Love – Chubby Checker
Carolina Peach – The California Honeydrops
Country Pie –  Bob Dylan
Green Onions – Booker T. & The MG’s
Sweet Potato Pie – James Taylor
Spoonful – Etta james
All that Meat and No Potatoes – Louis Armstrong
Mack the Knife – Frank Sinatra
Tennessee Whiskey – Chris Stapleton
Tequila – The Champs

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Crowd Pleasing Recipes 
With the aforementioned tunes cranking, it’s hight time you got to perfecting that one recipe that you’ll come to be synonymous with. You can never go wrong with Baked Brie, Roasted Brussel Sprout Dip, or Ricotta Stuffed Figs. But if you’re feeling ambitious, do as Grandma would do and break out Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Pick one of Julia Child’s 524 recipes and get to chopping. Just make sure you have enough butter on hand.

Festive Flannels
Where there’s smoke, there’s flannel. Spend your nights by the fire wrapped in buttery soft flannel (we like the Flannagan and the Lightfoot) or face the elements with double-ply flannel – equally suited for the rigors of the trail or the tavern. Gentleman, you can’t go wrong with the Watchdog, known for it’s killer warmth-to-weight ratio. And for the ladies, the double layer Mojacette is known for it’s warmth-to-cute ratio. Pair with boots and a flask for tailgate parties or dinner at the in-laws.

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DIY Thank You Notes
The holidays are all about giving thanks – thanks for the invite, thanks for the gift, thanks for your unwavering friendship over all these years. So give thanks in your own way with homemade Thank You notes. Get a fun stamp and go to town on some colored paper, or buy local post cards and scribble down a note of thanks. It’s a tradition you’ll grow to appreciate when you’re on the receiving end. So spread the joy, the old-school way.

Hot-to-Trot Cocoa
The right kind of cocoa will put some hair on your chest. Some involve booze (lookin at you, El Dorado Hot Chocolate), some involve ancho chiles (thank you Mexican Hot Chocolate), and some involve a flask of peppermint schnapps and a to-go cup of Nestlé. And if you like your cocoa with a side of bourbon and bacon, well we’ll raise a glass to that.

shotski

The Ultiamte Homemade Shotski
There are few things we love more than a great ski weekend – fresh pow, cozy nights, meaningful time with friends, and the hazy memories of the great shotski. And if you build it, they will come. Because friends don’t let friends shotski alone. Invest in a shotski now and it’ll serve you well  from first run of the season to the last run of spring. Here’s our tried and true guide on How To Build the Perfect Shotski.

“I’ll Have Seconds” Leggings 
The holidays are a marathon, not a sprint. So keep your joints limber and your spirits bright with stretchy, comfortable (yet still totally socially acceptable) leggings that are ready for morning yoga and family dinner. Here’s how we see our perfect holiday day: Wake up, lounge around, grab coffee with a friend, get in a walk or quick run, back to the house to whip up a side-dish, off to the family’s house for dinner, then spend the evening reminiscing about holidays past and present. One pair of leggings, endless possibilities.

leggings

Deck O’ Cards
You know the uncle who always has a good joke and a fresh pack of cards? You could be that uncle. Brush up on a few knock-knock jokes and get yourself familiar with the basics – Rummy, Crazy Eights, Bridge, and Presidents. Bring some chips and watch grandma school the young’uns in a game of Texas Hold’em. Just remember the golden rule: The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it back in your pocket!

The Old Pigskin
Red nose, chapped lips, and the unbridled right to tackle your cousins are what holiday dreams are made of. Keep it civil, but by all means hash out family feuds with a rousing game of down home, Americana football. Keep your elbows in, keep your whits about you, and don’t forget to pass. Here’s a quick refresher on the rules so you don’t get too rowdy before dinner.

 

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