It's 4 o'clock somewhere right??  Cocktail time!!! cocktails-sign 

I love cocktails!  They make me feel so grown up!  I feel like I'm on the set of Mad Men whenever I'm holding one!  A cocktail can be a very nice thing to offer your guests as opposed to just wine or beer.  And they can be quite sophisticated!  

No this doesn't mean you now have to go out and stock your bar with everything imaginable!  Keep the ingredients for 2 or 3 cocktails that you like and call them your "signatures"!  Your guest will appreciate the thought behind it!  And a signature cocktail is not "vodka tonic"!  That is simply a drink.  Try to jazz it up a little!  It's fun!!  I especially like having some new cocktail recipes around during the holidays!  When we have a party we of course have beer and wine, but then we do like 3 signature cocktails and everyone always loves  trying them!  I will usually write them out and frame them in a pretty frame and place it next to the bar.  So fun! So here are a couple of my favorite drinks!  Try these, but find ones that will create your own signature!

Stinger **This old-school cocktail will get you in the Mad Men spirit! 

 2 oz. cognac 

 1 oz. white creme de menthe 

Shake ingredients with ice in a shaker and pour over a short glass full of crushed ice. 

  Cranberry-Vodka Sippers 

 2 cups chilled cranberry juice 

 1 ½ cups chilled orange juice 

 ¾ cup vodka

 ½ lime 

 Combine first three ingredients in a pitcher; stir. Pour into chilled champagne flutes and garnish with lime peel. 

  Chilly Winter Evening (apple cider with spiced rum!) 

 4 Sticks cinnamon 

 24 whole cloves 

 4 tsp. whole allspice 

 2 gal. apple cider 

 2 cups light brown sugar, firmly packed 

 2 lemons, thinly sliced 

 Spiced Rum, to taste 

Tie cinnamon sticks, cloves, and allspice in a small cheesecloth bag.  Pour apple cider into a large pot; then add a bag of spices and brown sugar.  Simmer uncovered for about 25 minutes, or until thoroughly heated. Remove the bag of spices.  Pour cider ¾ of the way up a coffee mug.  Top off with some spiced rum to taste!  FYI you don't want to add the rum in the pot or all the alcohol will cook out! 

**This cocktail will warm up any evening or party! Have fun with this!  Try new things, change the ingredients up and make these your own!