Sunday, December 2

Hot Toddies


When the weather outside is frightful, what could be more delightful than a mug of nutmeg-laced hot buttered rum? Warm winter drinks always seem to add an element of festivity to the season.

When we lived in the States we made hot buttered rum every year for our annual Christmas party. It always seemed like such a traditional British, “Dickens-ish” thing to do. Then we moved to Scotland, hosted our first Christmas party, and no one at our party had ever tasted hot buttered rum (some had not even heard of it!). It was just like the episode of Will and Grace when Grace and Leo order two mugs of hot buttered rum at the Nutcracker. Grace declares that she loves they are drinking hot buttered rum because it is so “Christmassy.” Leo takes a sip and asks, “What the hell is this crap?”

We sometimes get a similar response. However, I now feel vindicated after reading the December issue of Elle (US edition). Caterer extraordinaire, Peter Callahan and the stylish Kate Spade served none other than hot buttered rum at the Spade home for a holiday party.

For delicious recipes look at Hot Toddies: Mulled Wine, Buttered Rum, Spiced Cider, and Other Soul-Warming Winter Drinks. It’s a great little book for the holidays, whether as a stocking stuffer or a hostess gift.


For those who are curious, hot toddy is a name given to any mixed drink that is served hot with alcohol. Although it originated in Scotland, there are many variations; the essential elements are a spirit base such as brandy, rum or whisky; hot liquid — hot tea, coffee, cocoa or water; a sweetener, such as honey, sugar or syrup. If you spend a winter in Scotland it’s no surprise that warm, bracing drinks were invented in the country.

Hot toddies are traditionally considered appropriate for relaxing in the evening before retiring, or following exposure to severe weather. So curl up by the fire and enjoy a steamy, frothy Irish coffee or steaming mulled wine.

Postscript - It's evening here in Scotland and we just returned home for the winter festival in George Square. Once home my husband made hot toddies from Mr Boston Bartender's Guide...yummy!
google images

11 comments:

nunu pepe' said...

My stepfather insists it's the cure for the common cold, if you sneeze he's out with the honey, brandy etc. served extra hot..ouch.
By the way I have put you on my humble little "My top 5 Interior blogs" Hope are pleased :)

ALL THE BEST said...

Thank you nunu pepe'...your blog is lovely!

My mom is the same. As a child she would wake up us during the night with a shot of hot brandy, lemon and honey. Today it would probably be consider child abuse - ha! ha!

Fairfax said...

When we did the lighted boat parade, we'd have hot chocolate with peppermint schnapps. I also like hot spiced cider with rum.

Have you tried Scarpa whisky?

ALL THE BEST said...

Sounds yummy fairfax!! No, I've not tried Scarpa...is it good?

Things That Inspire said...

What a lovely festive post to read! We just trimmed the tree yesterday , and a hot toddy sounds like the perfect thing to drink tonight while appreciating the results of all of our hard work!

ALL THE BEST said...

We just trimmed our tree yesterday too. It was the perfect drink for admiring the tree!!

Maryam in Marrakesh said...

It's the middle of the night, and I am in the airport in Bamako, and I am fighting a cold. And what I wouldn't do for a hot toddy right now!

Suzy said...

Mmm sounds good. I've always been a fan of egg nog myself.

ALL THE BEST said...

Me too Suzy!!!

Wish I could send you one Maryam! Feel better!

Alkemie said...

Now THAt looks YUM!

Frederico Vasconcelos said...

Mrs. Ronda,

First of all, I am from Brazil, and my English is not good. So, I ask you to apologize me if I make any mistake.

Well, I have a site named "Inglês no Supermercado" (English at Supermarket). The goal is to improve the English vocabulary of my students through labels of products find easily at a supermarket.

Today I wrote about the Toddy Chocolate. Then, when I was looking for a picture to paste on the post, the Google presented the hot toddies picture of your elegant and sophisticated site.

I copied your picture on my post, and put your link behind the picture. So, if there is any problem or if you want me to cut the image, please, contact me.

Thank you.