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The Best Cocktail for 2018 Holidays

National Restaurant Consultants tracks down the throwback drink bartenders are loving for the holiday season

By Sarah Ann Noel - November 19, 2018

These days, it seems like all the trends are nodding backwards--from vintage-inspired furniture and floral patterns to 80s and 90s pop-culture references, influencers are find what's good in what used to be. Speaking of 90s throwbacks, our restaurant consultants chatted with some of our favorite Denver bartenders this weekend about the go-to drink for the holiday season. 



We all remember Jeff Bridges iconic role as The Dude, and what was his drink of choice? That's right: A White Russian. The mixologists at Racine's reported a trend back to this drink made popular by the loafer in an oversized sweater; but we think it makes sense all the same. A White Russian is a simple drink, traditionally made from just three ingredients, so it lends itself to the more minimal trends we're seeing in pop-culture. (Liquor.com has the verified traditional recipe here.) As for its holiday resurgence, it's an indulgent treat, creamy and sweet, perfect for an end-of-year celebration. 

Our restaurant consultants see it as a trending win for your restaurant business: There's no learning curve, nothing fancy required, but you can really dress it up on your happy hour menus and for marketing purposes. What do we mean? Well, Saveur has 6 Must-Try Variations on the White Russian, BuzzFeed found 11 Twists. Better yet, follow the trends, but it in your own way: SuperCall has 7 drinks to love that are like a White Russian.

All of those recipes are great jumping-off points; but let's not forget that our bar experts are calling it the drink of the holiday season. So, you could go the traditional route (which is a fine bet--people like traditional at the holidays). Or you could really capitalize on the themes of the season! Try a Peppermint White Russian! A Gingerbread White Russian! Get crazy with an Egg Nog White Russian! Better yet, offer all three and make it a special. If Starbucks can have 15 different holiday drinks, you can have three holiday White Russians.

The point is this: pay attention to trends, and pay closer attention to how and when to use them. Seems like a lot to keep track of? Contact our restaurant consultants--they're experts at it.

Photo by Dio Septian on Unsplash