5 Great cocktails for the holidays crafted by David Danielson

by James Stevenson

Whether it be Danielson’s Liquid Bourbon Ball to toast a sweet New Year or a festive Candy Cane inspired cocktail crafted by the Woodford Reserve, each of these drinks crafted by David Danielson,Executive Chef of Churchill Downs, will take your holiday entertaining to the next level.


French Manhattan:

Credit: David Danielson, Executive Chef of Churchill Downs – The Bourbon Country Cookbook 

Recipe: 

  • 2 ounces bourbon
  • 3/4 ounce black raspberry liqueur, such as Chambord
  • 2 dashes bitters
  • 3 raspberries or blackberries, for garnish

Method: 

  1. In a shaker filled with ice, combine the bourbon, liqueur, and bitters
  2. Shake the mixture to chill and combine ingredients
  3. Strain it into a chilled martini glass
  4. Garnish with the berries and serve

Maple Old Fashioned:

Credit: David Danielson, Executive Chef of Churchill Downs – The Bourbon Country Cookbook 

Recipe:

  • 2 ounces rye whiskey
  • 2 ounces Maple Simple Syrup
  • 1 dash bitters
  • 1 (2-inch) disk orange peel for garnish

Method: 

  1. In a shaker filled with ice, combine the rye whiskey, syrup and bitters
  2. Shake the mixture vigorously to chill and combine ingredients
  3. Strain it into a rocks glass filled with ice
  4. Rub the rim of the glass with an orange peel and squeeze the peel over the top of the drink to release its oils
  5. Garnish with the orange peel and serve

Liquid Bourbon Ball:

Credit: David Danielson, Executive Chef of Churchill Downs – The Bourbon Country Cookbook 

Recipe:

  • 1 ounce bourbon  
  • 1/2 ounce nut-flavored liqueur (hazelnut, pecan, or walnut)  
  • 1/2 ounce dark crème de cocoa or chocolate liqueur  
  • Bourbon ball candy, for garnish (optional) 

Method:

  1. In a shaker filled with ice, combine the bourbon, nut-flavored liqueur, and crème de cocoa
  2. Shake the mixture to chill and combine ingredients
  3. Strain it into a chilled martini glass
  4. Garnish with bourbon ball candy, if using, and serve

Woodford Reserve Apple Cider

Credit: Woodford Reserve, The Official Bourbon of the Kentucky Derby

Recipe:

  • 4 ounces hot fresh apple cider
  • 2 ounces Woodford Reserve
  • 1 ounces brown sugar syrup

Method:

  1. In a shaker filled with ice, combine the apple cider, Woodford Reserve, and brown sugar syrup
  2. Shake the mixture to chill and combine ingredients
  3. Strain it into a chilled martini glass
  4. Garnish with an apple slice and cinnamon stick

For the syrup: Combine equal parts water and brown sugar. Bring to a boil until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool.


Woodford Reserve Candy Cane

Credit: Woodford Reserve, The Official Bourbon of the Kentucky Derby

Recipe:

  • 2 ounces Woodford Reserve
  • 1 ounces mint simple syrup

Method:

  1. In a mixing glass with ice, combine the Woodford Reserve and mint simple syrup
  2. Stir the mixture to chill and combine ingredients
  3. Strain it into a chilled martini glass
  4. Garnish & Enjoy!

For the syrup: Boil equal parts water and sugar until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool. Steep a handful of mint leaves in the cooling syrup until you reach the desired flavor. Strain before use.

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