As we inch ever-closer to the winter holiday celebrations, the days are getting shorter, the weather colder and the stores more jam-packed with last-minute gift-getters! Those holiday crowds are enough to make anyone reach for something stronger — or maybe you just want a festive way to warm up with friends and family during one of your many parties.

Whatever the occasion, we’ve got some special spirit and food pairings that are sure to become your new tradition! Gather your loved ones, put a log on the fire, pour a cup of cheer and enjoy these seasonal delights. From PicoBrew to you: happy holidays!

Teeling Irish Whiskey + Whiskey-Maple Ice Cream

The decadent combination of Teeling Irish Whiskey and whiskey-maple ice cream is rich enough for any holiday feast, and will both warm you up and cool you down through the winter months. The initial whiskey bite wakes up your tastebuds, and its earthy, smooth profile serves as a base for the sweetness of the ice cream, allowing the syrupy character of the liquor to come forth without becoming overbearing. This natural alcohol-sweetness enhances the maple flavor of the dessert, creating an explosion of fall tastes that harkens to pancakes on Christmas morning.

We used Pendleton® Whisky & Maple Frozen Custard from Tillamook for this match made in holiday heaven. But you could also pair with Halo Top’s Pancakes & Waffles Dairy-Free Ice Cream, or any maple-flavored holiday treat — or go crazy, and pair with pancakes and syrup for breakfast!

Hendricks Gin + Cranberry Cake / Trifle

The herbaceous Hendricks gin is a perfect complement to the tart sweetness of a cranberry dessert — especially a holiday cake or trifle that combines berries with fresh rosemary or sage. Botanical elements intermingle and enhance one another, and are balanced by the savory-sweet butter-and-cream flavors of the cake. It’s all cut with bright cranberry for a festive holiday combination.

 

Maker’s Mark + Gingerbread

The light sweetness of Maker’s Mark bourbon whiskey balances the rich molasses and spicy clove and nutmeg flavors of the gingerbread, creating a tasty treat to round out your holiday meal. When paired with this dessert, the whiskey’s subtle hints of caramel, vanilla and fruit are brought forth, mellowing the intensity of the gingerbread and creating a delicate dance of sugar, spice, bourbon and everything nice.

 

2bar Moonshine + Cornbread Stuffing

To give your holidays a Southern flair, pair 2bar Moonshine from our friends at 2bar Spirits with cornbread stuffing. The Northwest meets the South in this moonshine, which is made from Pacific Northwest grains in the traditional unaged corn whiskey style. The sweet corn flavors of the liquor complement the cornbread in this stuffing, balanced by aromatic holiday herbs such as sage and rosemary and savory, rich roasted vegetables. A taste of this pairing is sure to kickstart your Christmas!

Want to craft your own spirits at home? Check out the PicoStill attachment; when used with our Pico Model C machine, you can distill pilot batches of spirits safely and easily, or create your own festive infusions to add to your holiday food and beverages!