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I'm a writer who's eating, drinking and reading my way around Philadelphia.

Get merry with these holiday cocktails

Get merry with these holiday cocktails

We've only got a few weeks before Christmas, and you know what that means: it's holiday party time, and the booze is flowing. Sure, you could just chug Kenzinger while wearing your ugly Christmas sweater, but we're adults now, and that means getting drunk on more impressive drinks. I asked my resident cocktail expert (Nick) to come up with some holiday cocktails to impress your friends, and he did not disappoint. The less highbrow touches (like dumping chocolate sauce into a perfectly good drink) were entirely my own.

Cranberry Champagne Cocktail

Caution: this drink is strong, and really doesn't taste like alcohol. You will try to convince yourself you can drink five or six of these. You can't (or at least shouldn't).

1/4 oz simple syrup
1 1/2 oz brandy
Rosemary (for garnish)

In a shaker, muddle a handful of cranberries with simple syrup. (Really make sure you pop them, it's fun!) Add in a cube or two of ice along with the brandy. Give it a good shake before straining into a rocks glass. Top with champagne, a handful of cranberries and a sprig of rosemary for garnish.

Spiked Mulled Cider

I make this one from October through December. It's super easy, a crowd pleaser and everyone can add as much booze as they want. (Thanks to The Kitchn for this recipe!)

1 gallon fresh apple cider
1 orange (sliced in rounds)
Fresh ginger, sliced (about 1 1/2-inch)
5 cinnamon sticks
1 tablespoon whole cloves
5 star anise pods
Brandy (to taste)

In a slow cooker, add the cider, orange slices and spices (put the cloves, star anise and cinnamon in a cheese cloth first so you don't have to pick out pieces of cloves from your drink). Turn the slow cooker on low for four hours. Add as much brandy as you'd like. (It's the holidays, live a little.)

White Chocolate Russian

What makes a White Russian even better? Throwing chocolate syrup into the mix. Remember, eating and drinking healthy is not a holiday activity.

1 oz Kahlua
1 oz vodka
1 1/2 oz cream
Chocolate syrup (go crazy)

Combine the ingredients above in a rocks glass and stir. Feel free to skip the chocolate syrup if you don't want your drink to be as delicious. 

Also check out: Halloween cocktails; Favorite gin recipes

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