Toast the new year with these champagne alternatives

Go big bringing in the new year with this cocktail featuring tequila, mezcal and amontillado sherry.

Go big bringing in the new year with this cocktail featuring tequila, mezcal and amontillado sherry.

It’s tradition. When the clock strikes midnight on Jan. 1, people like to toast with champagne. But what if you’re not a fan of the sparkling wine or you’re just looking to do something a little different? It is a new year, after all. A time to be adventurous.

Try these cocktails (which either feature champagne or another type of wine, sherry) for your New Years Eve celebrations instead. The Berry Royale features Reyka Vodka, made in Iceland’s first vodka distillery, and it’s a light and slightly sweet accompaniment to your toasting, the closest cocktail in this list to champagne for those who don’t want to drift too far from the bubbly.

Clock Strikes Midnight, with two types of tequila, amontillado sherry and mezcal, is far boozier, a smoky, full-bodied cocktail that highlights all the best characteristics of each of the spirits.

The Fizzy Fox is ideal if you’re wanting to toast with a locally made spirit. Crafted by the bartenders at Peche, this disarmingly simple whiskey drink features Swift Single Malt, made at Dripping Springs’ first whiskey distillery. (If you’d rather not make it yourself, the bar is currently serving it by request.)

And Eversong is a gin drink that Austin bartender Mike McMillan, of the east side’s Mettle, created specifically for this festive time of year.

“It’s an ode to the classic Vesper,” he said. “Also known as the Eversong, which is the sixth of the seven canonical hours, this reminded me of the hour before midnight drawing near.”

Berry Royale 
1 oz. Reyka Vodka
1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice
1/2 oz. simple syrup
Top with champagne

Shake together vodka, fresh lemon juice and simple syrup. Pour into a flute glass. Top with champagne and garnish with cranberries.

— Reyka Vodka

Clock Strikes Midnight
3/4 oz. Tequila Don Julio 1942
1/3 oz. Tequila Don Julio Reposado
1/3 oz. Amontillado Sherry
1/5 oz. Mezcal
1/5 oz. Agave Nectar

Combine Tequila Don Julio 1942, Tequila Don Julio Reposado, Amontillado Sherry, Mezcal and agave nectar into a rocks glass. Stir with a bar spoon. Garnish with an orange twist.

— Marshall Altier of Spirit House Consultants

Fizzy Fox

1 1/2 oz. Swift Single Malt
1/2 oz. grapefruit juice
1/2 oz. honey syrup
Top with champagne

Shake all ingredients (except the champagne) together in a cocktail shaker. Strain into a martini glass.

— Peche

The Eversong

1/2 oz. Nolet’s Silver Dry Gin
1/2 oz. Ketel One Vodka
1/4 oz. Kina L’Avion d’Or
Top with Moet Imperial Reserve Cuvee

Shake all ingredients (except the champagne) together in a cocktail shaker. Strain into a martini glass.

Top with Cuvee. Garnish with a lemon twist.

— Mettle’s Mike McMillan


View Comments 0