How to Make a Hot Toddy, or the Workhorse of Winter Cocktails

How to Make the Hot Toddy, National Hot Toddy  DayIt’s National Hot Toddy Day!  But actually, look it up, it’s a thing.  The hot toddy is a wonderfully versatile hot drink which can be served with almost every imaginable booze and hot drink combination.  To get our footing, the following is a great simple recipe for the hot toddy on which many variations can be made to taste.

The Basic Hot Toddy
  • 2 oz Spirit
  • 0.5 oz honey
  • 6 oz hot water

Mix all ingredients in a mug and stir with a cocktail spoon until the honey has fully dissolved. Garnish with whatever you like – I love to garnish the basic hot toddy with a small mint sprig or citrus wheel.  Hot toddies were developed sometime in the early 18th century in Scotland.  While no one remembers exactly why it was created, historians believe that the recipe was designed to make the taste of scotch whisky more palatable, especially for women.  The  word “toddy” has been suggested to have evolved from “Tod’s well”, the historic water supply for the city of Edinburgh.  The hot toddy quickly became a cold weather favorite and grew more popular as the spirits used diversified.

From here, the possibilities are endless and you can begin to see how much of a workhorse the hot toddy truly is.  Almost any spirit can be used if utilized in the right combination with the hot liquid, although brandy, rum and whiskey are the standard choices.  And the hot liquid choices are equally vast.  Want a bit more flavor?  Try tea, coffee, cocoa, or apple cider.  (My grandmother insists that hot toddy’s need to be made with warm coke, so really anything is possible.)  Want to enhance the cocktail a bit?  Try different sweeteners (sugar, maple syrup, agave…), lemon, bitters, spices, butter…really anything that you can think of is worth a try.  Want to make a hot toddy for a cold or the flu?  Add some cinnamon sticks and cloves to the basic recipe to soothe your throat, clear your sinuses, and relieve a stuffy head. The hot toddy is great drink for every winter occasion and is well worthy of celebrating today on National Hot Toddy Day!

Total cost per drink? ~$0.78

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Posted in Bourbon, Brandy, Canadian Whiskey, Cognac, Dollar Drinks, Gin, Irish Whiskey, Moonshine, Rum, Rye, Scotch, Tequila, Vodka, Whiskey
2 comments on “How to Make a Hot Toddy, or the Workhorse of Winter Cocktails
  1. Hi! I understand this is sort of off-topic however I needed
    to ask. Does running a well-established website like yours take a large amount of work?
    I’m completely new to running a blog however I do write
    in my diary daily. I’d like to start a blog so I will be able to
    share my experience and feelings online. Please let me know
    if you have any kind of suggestions or tips for new aspiring bloggers.
    Appreciate it!

    • Nick McAfee says:

      My blog is fairly new on the scene, and though I get a fair amount of traffic, there is a lot more I still plan to do. There are however five very basic tips I can give you.

      1) Make sure you think a lot about theme and overall layout. It’s a lot easier to make changes at the beginning then later on, so make sure that you pick a theme that lends well to the format you think your followers will be reading in: what is good for mobile may not be good for computer browsing and vice-versa. If you want to capture both audiences, pick your theme carefully.

      2) Pick your target audience and engage them! Knowing your target audience is important no matter what you are doing, from marketing a product to an opinion blog. There is some room for you to evolve your style along the way, but remember to always stay true to your audience.

      3) It’s never to early to think about SEO! If you want readers, you need to think about search engine optimization from day one. This includes the tagging and category systems you choose to implement as well as any linking or keywords you select. It is a lot easier to start off with a good system on your first post than it is to go back and change your system for optimization after 100 posts.

      4) Post on a regular (optimally daily) basis! This is especially important when first starting a blog. Once you have enough articles and assuming you did good SEO work, you will continue to get hits, but over time without new content traffic will decrease substantially. Also set a daily time limit for the amount of time you are going to work on the blog. More time doesn’t always lead to better content – efficiency is key.

      5) Blog about something you care about! If you aren’t passionate about your subject matter, how can you expect anyone else to be? If you enjoy writing your blog, you are much more likely to gain a dedicated readership than if you view it as a task. Have fun and readers will come!

      Best of luck starting your blog – it is a very rewarding undertaking that is well worth the amount of time you will undoubtedly dedicate to it.

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Nick McAfee
Nick McAfee is a student of Princeton University and is passionate about mixology. As a student with a low monthly income, he has developed ways to create simple cocktails with complex flavors from inexpensive ingredients. Learn more about Nick and Broke & Thirsty.
Do you want a free eBook on making homemade and ridiculously cheap bar syrups?

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