The holidays are right around the corner and LA Opera wants to help you celebrate! In anticipation for the upcoming festivities, here is a list of five opera-themed cocktails to serve at your next holiday party!
Hansel and Gretel – Gingerbread Martini
This sweet treat not only teases the opera’s popular gingerbread house, but this Gingerbread Martini will also have your guests singing for more!
- 4 ounces Irish cream liqueur
- 4 ounces vodka
- 2 ounces coffee liqueur
- 2 ounces Gingerbread Syrup (recipe to follow)
- 2 scoops vanilla ice cream, softened
- Whipped cream, for topping
- Crushed gingersnap cookies, for topping
Combine the Irish cream liqueur, vodka, coffee liqueur and gingerbread syrup in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well. Pour into a chilled martini glass. Top with whipped cream and a small handful of the crushed gingersnap cookies.
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 5 cloves
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- One 2-inch piece of fresh ginger, cut in rounds
Add sugar, water, cloves, cinnamon and ginger to a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir continuously until the sugar has dissolved. Lower the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature (about 20 minutes) before using.
(Recipe courtesy of Trisha Yearwood / Food Network)
Candide – Glitter Vodka Sour
In anticipation for our upcoming production of Bernstein’s Candide, this sweet cocktail is a treat for both the mouth and eyes. Inspired by the production’s showstopping aria “Glitter and be Gay,” our take on a Cherry Vodka Sour includes edible glitter to draw in your guests’ attention!
- 1 part Sweet & Sour mix
- 1 part vodka
- 1 tbsp grenadine syrup
- 1 tbsp edible glitter, gold, plus extra for garnish
Add Sweet & Sour mix, vodka grenadine and edible glitter in a cocktail shaker. Add ice. Shake well and pour into a chilled glass. Top with more glitter.
La Traviata – Champagne Cocktail
Toast your crowd with this champagne cocktail that nods its head to La Traviata’s famous brindisi (drinking song) in Act I, “Libiamo ne’ lieti calici” (“Let’s drink from these joyous glasses”).
- 1 sugar cube
- 2-3 dashes bitters
- Pinch of gold edible glitter, for garnish
Place the sugar cube in the bottom of a chilled champagne flute. Add 2-3 dashes of bitters and fill glass with favorite champagne. Garnish with the edible glitter.
Carmen – Sparkling Apple Cider Sangria
Inspired by the streets of Seville from our recent production of Bizet’s Carmen, this holiday twist on the classic Sangria is both cozy and refreshing.
- 2 apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup cognac
- 2 cups apple cider
- 1 bottle dry sparkling wine, chilled
- 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
Add the apples to a large pitcher, reserving about 1/2 cup for garnishing. Add the cognac, apple cider, and chilled sparkling wine. Stir. Fill the pitcher with ice and pour the sangria into glasses filled with ice. Top with sliced apple and pomegranate seeds.
(Recipe courtesy of kitchn)
L’elisir D’amore – Mulled Wine
Dulcamara’s “elixir” from Donizetti’s The Elixir of Love (L’elisir d’amore) may only be cheap Bordeaux, but this mulled wine has hints of sugar and spice to ignite a flame in anyone!
- 4 cups apple cider
- 1 bottle red wine
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 orange, zested and juiced
- 4 whole cloves
- 3 star anise
- 4 oranges, peeled, for garnish
Combine the cider, wine, honey, cinnamon sticks, zest, juice, cloves and star anise in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer over low heat for 10-12 minutes. Pour into mugs. Add an orange peel to each and serve.
(Recipe courtesy of Ina Garten / Food Network)LA Opera is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to the greater good.