Avoid Amateur Night! Make fancy cocktails in your very own house on New Year's Eve.

The things I do for you people.

At the time of this writing, I am popping two Advil and attempting to rehydrate myself before I head off to work. You see, Lindsey and I had to sample cocktails last night. We had to do it, because we know that not everyone likes to hit the bars on New Year's Eve. And we wanted to be there for those of you, who, like us, choose not to imbibe in the public haunts of Lawrence or Kansas City on Amateur Night, where girls in too-few clothes (it's freaking January, Ladies!) throw up on their too-high heels, and boys in shiny black shirts block my path to the bathroom while they posture for the aforementioned girls.

Yep, we're over it. We will be tucked safely in at Lindsey's New Year's Eve We'd-Rather-Not-Get-Caught-Up-In-A-Barfight Party, eating prime rib, warming ourselves by the chiminea, and we might even break out the cards for a game of gin rummy if we get really crazy. And, we'll have cocktails. Good cocktails, made with booze we like the way we like and we won't have to wait for half an hour in line to get them, or pay nine bucks a pop for a watered-down version.

And because we're nice, we took one for the team, and tested out our arsenal of new drink recipes last night. Ouch.

I was determined to make a Red Velvet Champagne Cocktail, because I heard it has replaced the Cosmo as New York's 'it drink". I didn't really know how to make one, so I decided to wing it. The results? Deeelish. Think smoothie with bubbles. Yum!

Red Velvet Champagne Cocktail

1 cup strawberries, halved
1 fluid ounce Triple Sec
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon strawberry jam
juice of half a lemon

Put these ingredients in a blender and puree. Then spoon a heaping tablespoon into the bottom of a champagne flute, and top with the bubbly. Garnish with a strawberry.



I loved this, because it wasn't super-sweet or overly strawberry flavored, but it certainly brought a little more to the party than your basic OJ/champagne mix. The puree is enough to make four or five drinks.

We realize that some people like their drinks sweet. Like, they don't want to be able to tell there's any alcohol in there. Plus, it's not a party until someone vomits blue stuff on the patio. So, out came the Blue Curacao.

The Skittletini

1 fluid ounceBlue Curacao
1 fluid ounce pomegranate juice
4 fluid ounces vodka

Shake over ice and strain into a martini glass. Just give it a little twist of lemon.


This next one was a dark horse. Neither Lindsey nor I thought we'd like it much, because we're neither one a huge fan of gin. But in the interest of diversity, we gave it a go, and it turned out to be our favorite little concoction of the evening.

The 800

4 fluid ounces gin
Juice from half a lemon
2 tablespoons honey (we had some delicious local stuff that far surpasses the syrupy stuff in the plastic bear)

Shake vigorously (to dissolve the honey) over ice until well-chilled, and then strain into a champagne flute. We used a large twist to help counterbalance the gin, and it was not only pretty, but a delicious addition. Don't ask me why we called it The 800. I won't tell you.


The Clementini was a close runner up to The 800. These days, our family is consuming about three clementines each, every day, so it only seemed natural to go ahead and try to incorporate our favorite winter citrus into a cocktail.

The Clementini

Juice from one clementine
2 fluid ounces triple sec
4 fluid ounces vodka

Shake well over ice and strain into a martini glass. Garnish with a slice of clementine. Beautiful! This is delicately sweet and you know, chock full of vitamin C. I count it as a health drink.

And while we're talking health drinks, let's talk about pomegranate juice. It's super good for you, full of antioxidants and other desirable stuff. Which cancels out any alcohol you put with it, right?

Pomegranate-Currant Champagne Cocktail

1 fluid ounce Creme de Cassis
1 fluid ounce Pomegranate juice
Fill with Champagne

If you want to be extra high-class, you could put some pomegranate aerils in the bottom of the glass. So pretty!


And finally, a little dessert treat. This is a White Russian Martini, or, as we like to call it, "The Lebowskitini"

The Lebowskitini

2 fluid ounces vodka
2 fluid ounces Kaluha
2 fluid ounces half and half

Shake well over ice and strain into a large martini glass. You could squirt a little chocolate sauce and let it run down the sides of the glass for an extra fancy effect, or do like I did and shave a little chocolate right on top of the drink. It's sort of like a milkshake. For grownups.


Of course, the best part of the "at home" party is that you can fall asleep on your friend's couch and not worry about driving yourself home (or waiting FOREVER for a taxi), which is key if you're going to set up a bar like we have planned.

Have a safe and happy new year!


linswri 12 years, 3 months ago

It was delicious, and fun. We will do it again...Friday. :)

Jonathan Kealing 12 years, 3 months ago

These drinks sound amazing. Just might swing me to the at-home party this year. Another great blog post!

Commenting has been disabled for this item.