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The beauty of making cocktails is that beyond a stocked liquor cabinet, it takes few extra ingredients to mix up a drink that’s every bit as party-ready as it is deliciously satisfying. With just some pantry spices, a splash of milk or fresh fruit, you can transform the everyday shaken sipper into a dressed-up drink worthy of a celebration. When it comes to seasonal cocktails for the holidays, try warming up some of the liquor for a comforting cup, and opt for fragrant spices like cinnamon and nutmeg to add flavors that will naturally complement what you’re eating. Check out Food Network’s top-five Thanksgiving cocktails below from Giada, Sunny, Alton and more chefs to find the ultimate collection of drinks that are ideal for Turkey Day entertaining.
5. Dolan’s Delicious Hot Buttered Rum — Swapping in hot water for the hot milk will offer a thinner consistency to this classically rich cocktail, finished with a floating pat of butter and a dusting of nutmeg before serving.
4. Spiced Bourbon, Beer and Maple Martinis — To make sure you get the most flavor possible out of her sweet and spicy cocktail, Giada recommends shaking the bourbon, beer and syrup with ice cubes and chilling the martini glasses. She serves each drink with a chile for subtle heat and a striking presentation.
3. Sparkling Cranberry Quencher — Perhaps the best part about Sandra’s five-minute fizzy sipper is that it’s pitcher-friendly, which means that once you prepare it, guests can simply help themselves and you don’t have to play bartender.
2. Pumpkin Pie Martini — Part dessert and part after-dinner drink, this top-rated martini features both vanilla- and pumpkin pie-flavored liqueurs, plus a splash of half-and-half for creaminess and a graham cracker garnish for added texture.
1. Hot Toddy — Alton’s whiskey-focused cocktail can be prepared ahead of time by warming the liquor with a lemon-scented simple syrup in a slow cooker. Click the play button on the video below to watch him make it.