Leftover Libations

How to use up your leftover spirits, wine, and beer from the hoildays

At this point in the holiday season, our liquor cabinet is full of a range of half-empty bottles. That’s not to mention the collection of odds and ends in the fridge, including random beers and several wines that need to be finished. Surely, we aren’t alone—after all, if you don’t have anything left at the end of the party, you didn’t have enough to start with!

To help you utilize these spirited leftovers, here are some inventive recipes you should try in the coming weeks.

Excess red wine on hand? The Last-Minute Mulled Wine is an excellent option. Our formula, from San Francisco bartender and Liquor.com advisory board member H. Joseph Ehrmann, combines half a bottle with bourbon or brandy and a few basic spices.

To use up that Thanksgiving staple, Beaujolais nouveau, whip up all-star mixologist and Liquor.com advisory board member Jim Meehan’s Nouveau Sangaree, an old-timey cocktail that calls for apple brandy, sloe gin, and maple syrup.

Have a bit of white wine left? Fix talented bartender Alex Day’s simple-but-complex NZ Sauvignon Blanc Punch or recapture summer with his Albariño Mint Julep — most dry bottlings will work in either concoction.

And use your beer in celebrity chef Kathy Casey’s Marvelous Frothy Margarita, which adds a splash of suds (cheap domestic lager is just fine) to the classic tequila drink. You can go through a larger quantity with the Hellfire, a tasty libation that includes brewskis, spiced rum, lime, ginger beer and Tabasco sauce.

For leftover spirits, there’s one tipple you need to know: the Old Fashioned. The combo of bitters, sweetener, and liquor is lovely with everything from the traditional whiskey to tequila, rum, gin, or even liqueurs.

Here’s to making your holiday season a little easier, your pantry a little better organized and your drinks a little more delicious. Cheers!

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