609 Walnut Street, Cincinnati, Ohio 45202 513.578.6660 Hours

Book a Table


12 Days of Cocktails: Day 12

Posted on Thursday, Dec. 24, 2015


I’m not trying to make waves or break up holiday tradition, but if I was Santa I would be totally over this whole milk and cookies thing. Think about it, that’s just too much milk. I just think if I want to stay on the big man’s nice list I’m going to break up the monotony a little. So for our last cocktail I’ve created a spiked recipe for Santa’s milk AND his cookies. That’s right because we don’t bake in my house unless there is booze involved. I think Santa deserves a little spiked jolliness for all his efforts, don’t you? For the milk I’ve opted to use Horchata which is a beverage made in places like Mexico and South America. The Mexican version is typically a rice milk flavored with cinnamon and vanilla. There are other versions made with seeds or almonds as well, depending on what region you are in. For the cookies, I take a super simple molasses and ginger dough and add Watershed Nocino, which is a liqueur made with Ohio black walnuts, cinnamon and clove–too delicious not to use in every which way possible, especially baking. Full disclosure it’s also delicious drizzled on gelato.

1 cup sugar
½ cup shortening
1 egg
¼ cup molasses
2 cups flour
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp backing soda
½ tsp salt
4 tbsp Nocino
OPTIONAL: Cardamom sugar: 4 parts brown sugar, 1 part ground cardamom

METHOD: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients and shape into 1-inch balls and roll in regular sugar, brown sugar or fancy pants cardamom sugar.  Place on cookie sheet and bake at 375 for about 8-10 minutes. Allow to cool on wire rack.

2 parts Horchata-rice milk.
1 part pear syrup

4 pears
3 cups water
3 cups sugar
8 sage leaves
2 tbsp whole cardamom
5 whole cloves
Peel of one orange

METHOD: In a medium sized sauce pan over medium-high heat, add sugar and water. Chop pears and once sugar has dissolved add pears, sage, cardamom and cloves. Bring mixture up to a boil, then lower to a simmer. Simmer for 30 minutes. Strain mixture, and store in an airtight container in fridge.

1 oz Bourbon Barrel Gin
½ oz Nocino
4 oz spiced milk

METHOD: Add all ingredients to a shaker tin, shake and pour into a Collins glass. Garnish with an orange peel.

I just want to say, sincerely, thank you for being part of the last 12 days, and I hope you found one or two recipes to share with your loved ones during this special time of year. I’m so thankful that I am able to share these recipes, and help even in some little way create some lasting holiday memories. I look forward to the next semester of Sunday School cocktail classes, and I hope you all have a magical, and warm holiday.

Cheers, and thank you!

Your neighborhood bar geek,
Catherine Manabat.