Four Winter Cocktails Shaken & Stirred By Delhi’s Top Mixologists

Delhi winters are upon us and we don’t need a reason to bring out our favourite spirits, fix ourselves a particularly potent potion and stir in the much needed warmth. Classics, maybe? Gintos, perhaps? A spin on the chosen poison may do just as well. So bundle up with your homies, pull them shakers and glasses out, turn on your favourite playlists, and get going.  We reach out to some of the best mixologists in #OurCity and ask them to part with recipes of their fave winter cocktails.

Yangdup Lama: The maverick mixologist is credited with giving Delhi NCR Cocktails & Dreams Speakeasy. When not stirring up a storm behind the bar or seamlessly representing the world’s ace spirit brands, you can find him nursing a good cuppa second flush Darjeeling tea.

Pankaj Balachandran: Managing Partner at Barback Collective and Brand Ambassador for Diplomático Rum, he aims to put Indian bars on The World’s 50 Best list. Travelling the world in quest of this goal, catch him if you are at his home base, Perch Wine & Coffee Bar, when Balachandran’s not on the go.

Vicky Thakur: The award winning tipple-maker mans the stage at the capital’s blue-eyed bar, PCO. While he shares our love for a potent Old Fashioned, he fashions some of the most crackerjack cocktails you’ve ever chugged.

Tenzin Lhagoe: A Tibetan mixologist heading bar operations at Public Affair, he juggles championing Khan market’s fave watering hole with ensuring you have just the drink you want in your hand.

Hot Toddy by Yangdup Lama

Image: Cocktails & Dreams Speakeasy

Spice up a cold evening with Yangdup Lama’s signature Hot Toddy. While rum is our go-to spirit for this recipe, the right choice of whisky may just elevate the experience. Pair your toddy with baked brie and toasted 7-grain bread bites dabbed with good old orange marmalade.

Prep Time:  10 minutes

Challenge Level: Beginner

From the Pantry:

  • 60 ml whisky or dark rum                               
  • 1 cinnamon stick           
  • 3 cloves                            
  • 5 black peppercorns
  • 1 star anise                     
  • 15 ml sugar syrup          
  • 15 ml lime juice
  • Warm water
  • Orange peel for garnish                    

Mix Away:

  1.    In wine glass measure the spirit, lime juice, and sugar syrup.
  2.    Drop the spices in the mix.
  3.    Pour warm water and allow it to infuse for one minute.
  4.    Garnish with an orange peel and serve.


My Way by Pankaj Balachandran

Image: Perch

Warm your cockles with this enchanting cocktail that combines coffee and booze for that ultimate kick. Settle in with some steaks done to your liking, or triple cheese toasties. Those with a sweet tooth can enjoy the heady cocktail with a side of waffles or brownies (or both).

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Challenge Level: Expert

From the Pantry:

  • 90 ml El Salvador pour over coffee
  • 45 ml Bacardi Gold
  • 10 ml Amaretto
  • 15 ml orange infused syrup
  • Almond cream foam
  • Coffee beans and almond shavings for garnish

Mix Away:

  1.    In a brandy balloon glass add in Bacardi Gold, Amaretto and orange infused syrup.
  2.    Add freshly made El Salvador pour over coffee and stir.
  3.    Top up the mixture with almond cream foam.
  4.    Garnish with coffee beans and almond shavings.


Francophile by Vicky Thakur

Image: PCO

Cut through the colds with this warm wine-based drink that doubles up as the perfect pre-dinner cocktail. Serve it with nibbles such as olives, jalapeno poppers, or paella bowls. And while you’re at it we will have all the cheese, merci beaucoup.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Challenge Level: Beginner

From the Pantry:

  • 30 ml dark rum
  • 45 ml red wine sangria
  • 15 ml cinnamon syrup
  • 10 ml lime juice
  • 90 ml hot water
  • Apple slices and a stick of cinnamon for garnish

Mix Away:

  1.       Mix dark rum, red wine sangria, and cinnamon syrup together.
  2.       Top up the mix with hot water.
  3.       Add lime juice and stir.
  4.       Serve in an absinthe glass.
  5.      Garnish with apple slices and a stick of cinnamon.


Pumpkin Pie Julep by Tenzin Lhagoe

Image: Daniel Krieger

A favourite thanksgiving and Christmas drink, having the Pumpkin Pie Julep is much like drinking your pumpkin pie. Except that it is 233 times more delicious. Have it with herb-roasted chicken or a fat, charred bratwurst.

Prep Time: 8 minutes

Challenge Level: Intermediate

From the Pantry:

  • 60ml William Grants Scotch Whisky
  • 15ml homemade pumpkin & cinnamon syrup
  • 10ml fresh lime juice
  • 30ml ginger ale
  • Half a lemon for garnish
  • Sambuca and flaming torch for garnish (optional)

Mix Away:

  1. Take a clean julep mug. Add homemade pumpkin & cinnamon syrup and fresh lime.
  2. Add 3-4 ice cubes and stir well. Top with crushed ice.
  3. Add William Grants Scotch Whisky and ginger ale.  
  4. Garnish with a pulped out lemon bowl and flamed Sambuca.


Let’s put together an unforgettable winter soiree. Shall we?


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