If, like us, your mixing and shaking skills are more along the open-and-pour lines (thank god for bubbly, right?) when it's time to toast friends with a Christmas drink you're probably more the 'Let's go out!' type. But given that there's at three public holidays coming up, we think it's time you started expanding your cocktail repertoire to more than just a beer and wine scenario. After all, what are liquor cabinets for?

While we're not expecting you to win Bartender of the Year anytime soon, we've pulled together three simple new-season cocktails that will elevate anyone's booze cup to the appropriate festive proportions. Don't forget your zest.

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1. St-Germain Cocktail

Christmas cocktails: 3 festive drinks to impress

Never heard of St Germain? You should. This fancy pants artisanal French liqueur is handcrafted from wild elderflowers and works to transform any tipple it touches. And this St Germain cocktail makes for a pretty smashing aperitif:

40mL St-Germain
60mL Martini Prosecco
60mL sparkling water

Take a tall, ice-filled glass and add St-Germain to the prosecco and ice-cold sparkling water. Garnish with a twist of lemon.

Related story: ACME's Ed Loveday on the return of the aperitif

 

2. The Intense Star and Tonic

Christmas cocktails: 3 festive drinks to impress

Bombay Sapphire needs little introduction, but this season one of the world's most beloved gins scores a premium update. Star of Bombay builds on the eight classic botanicals present in every bottle of Bombay and adds vapour-infused dried bergamot orange peel from Italy's Calabria region and the floral-musk notes of ambrette seeds from yellow hibiscus flowers grown in Edcuador. Use it to intensify the flavours of a classic gin and tonic:

One part Star Of Bombay gin
One part Indian Tonic Water

Add ingredients to a tumbler filled with ice. Finish with a twist of orange zest.

Related story: Must visit: the MCA's pop-up Gin Garden opens this week


3. Campari Negroni

Christmas cocktails: 3 festive drinks to impress

It's as if Campari heard our prayers and came to save the day with their recently launched online go-to The Cocktail Studio. Search by flavour, occasion or poison and discover a world of classic cocktail recipes and cool drink ideas. In the spirit of summer, we chose the negroni:

30mL Campari
30mL Cinzano Rosso
30mL gin

Add all ingredients to a serving glass with ice. Stir through and garnish with a twist of orange zest. (Tip: play around with the garnish. One of the most popular Negroni's in Sydney was served with both a lemon and orange zest.)

Christmas cocktails: 3 festive drinks to impress

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