A Holiday-Ready Espresso Martini (& More Festive Drinks to Savor This Season)

A Holiday-Ready Espresso Martini (& More Festive Drinks to Savor This Season)

December is like a game of Jenga. I start off strong, ready to accept every holiday invitation and family commitment. But as I attend each holiday dinner, party, and gift exchange, a little piece of me diminishes, until I finally crumple into a pile of exhaustion—otherwise known as Dry January.

One obvious way to keep it together this season is to be more mindful about drinking, not necessarily by cutting out booze, but by building in time to savor every festive drink. Re-centering yourself with a cup or glass in hand is a universal tradition: The Italians enjoy apertivo hour, Scandinavians make time each day for fika—coffee and cake—and millions of people from England to Japan have rituals around tea, be it a late afternoon cuppa or a ceremony.

Closer to home, NYC-based Rasāsvāda makes zero-proof botanical blends that fit perfectly into this tradition. Its Black Ginger Spirit Restorative is an ideal starting point: Brewed entirely from 15 whole plants and botanicals (and nary a drop of added sugars or preservatives), it’s like a cross between an aromatic brewed tea and a bitter amaro. The bold flavor profile demands your attention, which is just what we need amidst this fleeting holiday season—a little more time to enjoy the present. With that in mind, here are a few inspirational drink recipes to help you slow down and soak in the holiday spirit, so you can make it to 2024 in one, solid piece.

1. Rasāsvāda Black Ginger

Black ginger has purported detoxifying properties that make it a natural hangover helper, but you can simply avoid one by drinking this zero-proof decoction straight. Along with its star ingredient, this blend includes reishi mushrooms, chicory, cardamom, and burdock root, which impart a natural sweetness and depth. It’s best enjoyed chilled (feel free to shake before serving—it creates a nice foam) or if you’d like, top with a seltzer for some sparkle.

2. Perfect Hot Chocolate

Hot chocolate is the ultimate reward for braving the cold, and a surefire way to coax kids into the kitchen to spend some quality time with you. This recipe blends real chocolate (bitter or semisweet) with cocoa powder for an ultra-rich cup that you can embellish with a little orange peel, star anise, or Bailey’s (just for you, of course).

3. Cardamom Chai

To make this simple chai, add a little sugar and warm milk steeped in freshly crushed cardamom and Assam tea for an easy, warming pick-me-up—best sipped when catching up with a friend.

Photo by Rasāsvāda

4. Black Ginger Espresso Martini

Though zero-proof, Rasāsvāda plays well with spirits, too. The Black Ginger Espresso Martini is a nod to both its namesake and the Italian shakerato, a cold, “shaken coffee” served in a coupe or martini glass. Black Ginger adds a delicious, fragrant depth to the mix—you don’t even need the vodka to make this worth toasting.

Ingredients

1 oz Rasāsvāda Black Ginger

1.5 oz Vodka

0.5 oz Simple Syrup

1 oz Espresso

1 Lemon Twist (for garnish)

Serve

In a cocktail shaker, add all ingredients with ice and shake hard for 20 seconds. Double strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.


What is your favorite drink to soak in the holiday spirit? Tell us in the comments!

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