6 festive cocktails and mocktails to ring in the new year

Food Network culinary producer Vivian Chan and lifestyle expert Alejandra Ramos are joining TODAY to share their favorite festive cocktail and mocktail recipes for New Year’s Eve. Chan mixes up a bubbly virgin cranberry and rosemary sipper, a booze-free kumquat mojito and a non-alcoholic spiced espresso martini. Ramos shows us how to make a honey-scented French 75, minty apple cider mojitos and lemon drops with a sparking grape garnish.

Bubbles and Cran by Vivian Chan

Bubbles aren’t just for Champagne and seltzer. This drink is inspired by the beautiful wreaths decorating the shopfronts of New York City during the holidays. It will wake up your palate with the fiery kick of ginger!

Kumquat Fauxhito by Vivian Chan

This is a winter twist on a classic summer cocktail! Chan loves kumquats because they are tangy with a hint of sweetness. When in peak season, they’re so juicy they explode with freshness to wake you up from the winter blues.

Spicy Espresso Martino by Vivian Chan

Chan loves chocolate milkshakes and this espresso “martino” is the perfect pick-me-up on New Year’s Eve so you can stay up for the midnight ball drop. The warm spices bring this mocktail to a whole new level. It’s a great way to start the new year on a sweet note.

Honey 75 by Alejandra Ramos

Bring a little sweetness into the new year with this twist on the classic French 75 champagne cocktail! The Honey 75 is made with flavorful orange blossom honey syrup instead of sugar for a slightly more exciting cocktail. French 75s can be made with either gin or cognac, and people will argue endlessly about which spirit is right, but Ramos says that when it comes to food and drink, the right choice is whatever tastes the best to you!

Apple Cider Mojitos by Alejandra Ramos

This is how Ramos drinks mojitos during winter in New York: local apple cider, warm winter spices like cinnamon and clove, fresh mint, and limes. It’s a seasonal twist on the drink that so often fills her glass throughout the sweltering summer months.

The Lemon Ball Drop by Alejandra Ramos

Ramos believes garnishes are to cocktails what accessories are to outfits and neither is complete without the perfect finishing touch! A sparkly sugar-frosted grape “ball” decorates the top of this festive New Year’s twist on the classic Lemon Drop Martini. The grapes are delicious on their own and, since eating grapes at the stroke of midnight is a good luck tradition in Spain and Latin America (including her family’s native Puerto Rico), she recommends making a whole bowl of them to enjoy along with your cocktails while waiting for the new year to arrive!

If you like those celebratory drinks, you should also try these:

Holiday Toast by Tracy Franklin

Vanilla Milk and Chocolate Chip Cookie Shooters by Alejandra Ramos

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