Eggnog may be one of the most fun names to say in all drink-dom (we’re not talking about generally fun names, such as the Hop, Skip, and Go Naked, of course). Especially the second word. Nog. Try it.
Nog. Nice, right? Anyway.
Though fatty, sugary eggnog already epitomizes the holiday spirit, there might come a time when you decide to add a little alcohol to make it the perfect unhealthy storm. Deciding what to mix with eggnog, though, can be a challenge for those just getting acquainted in the milk punch world. Luckily for you, we have the rundown.
Selecting Your Ingredients
We understand if you’re too lazy — or too hungover — to make your own ‘nog from scratch. Any store-bought eggnog will work with the ingredients below, but shooting for a higher quality is always a good bet. If you’re having trouble deciding, we suggest trying Organic Valley’s Eggnog or another fresh, local brand in your area.
Now, what to mix with eggnog. You should typically stick with dark, amber-colored spirits with a higher proof (you know how we love our bourbon and our rum here). With these, the higher alcohol content will neutralize the egg nog’s sweetness. In turn, the other flavors in your eggnog will overpower the nuances of premium liquor, so there’s also no need to reach for the top shelf. Simply add a shot of reasonably priced, high-proofed booze and shake or stir it well.
Once you mix your eggnog and liquor — and add a dusting of nutmeg — you’re all set to enjoy your festive beverage. To make your eggnog eggs-tra special, however, consider some of these traditional additions:
- Cordials: Ginger liqueur, peppermint schnapps, white chocolate liqueur, Jägermeister Spice
- Spices: Nutmeg (duh), cloves, allspice, cinnamon, vanilla extract
- Other Goodies: Coffee (highly recommended), light brown sugar, chocolate syrup, maple syrup
Feel free to play around with all sorts of eggnog concoctions. If you like it, it can’t be wrong, right? We advise against going overboard with ingredients, though. Instead, select one or two items from each category and try different combinations — ideally not all in one night. If you’re feeling ambitious, or want life made easy, consider checking out the following recipes.
Irish Cream Eggnog
- 1 part Baileys Irish Cream Liqueur
- 1 part High West Double Rye whiskey
- 2.5 parts strongly brewed chilled coffee or espresso (Stumptown Coffee’s Snow Day Blend or Starbucks’ Christmas Blend work best)
- 1.5 parts eggnog of choice (or two parts whole milk/milk alternative and 1 egg)
- .25 part vanilla extract
Maker’s Mark Eggnog
- 1 liter Maker’s Mark Bourbon
- 1 quart milk
- 1 quart heavy cream
- 2 dozen eggs
- 1-1/2 cups sugar
- Nutmeg for garnish
Method: Separate eggs and beat yolks until creamy. Whip sugar into yolks. Beat whites until they stand in peaks, adding 1/2 cup additional sugar, if desired. Beat yolks and Maker’s Mark Bourbon together. Add whites. Beat cream. Add cream and milk to mixture. Add nutmeg to taste, and garnish each cup with nutmeg.
The Sophisticated and Complex Cogg Nogg
(Created by Lauren Mote, YEW seafood + bar, Vancouver)
- 1.5 oz Hennessy VS Cognac
- 2 oz heavy cream or heavy whipping cream
- 1 oz Darjeeling tea syrup*
- 1 whole egg
- 2 dashes Malagasy Chocolate Bitters
- Grated nutmeg
Method: Add all ingredients, except garnished nutmeg, and shake vigorously without ice to emulsify the egg. Add ice and shake again. Double strain to a festive mug. Finish with freshly grated nutmeg.
*Darjeeling tea syrup:
- 2 tsp Darjeeling tea (preferably Ghorka summer flush)
- 1 cup hot water
- 1 cup of demerara sugar
Method: In a heat-safe container, add tea and hot water and let steep for 30 minutes. Remove tea and add sugar. Stir to dissolve.