Holiday Survival Guide

The Growler Holiday Survival Guide // Photo by Matt Lien

The Growler Holiday Survival Guide // Icons and illustration by David Witt, DWITT All-Purpose Illustrations; Photo by Matt Lien

Need a festive cocktail to shake up for your guests? Not sure how to navigate your holiday office party? Did mom tell you to bring a side dish to dinner? We’ve got you covered.

Welcome to The Growler’s Holiday Survival Guide, everything you’ll need to make this year’s holiday season memorable.

DRINK

Photo by Aaron Davidson // Growler Magazine

L to R: Mulled Wine, Inlander, Fall of Temperance, and Falcon Gravy // Photo by Aaron Davidson

There’s a certain type of drinking that happens when the mercury begins to plummet. Words like fortification, comfort, and hardiness enter our cocktail vocabulary. The man to get us through this rough patch of weather is Keith Werner from Eat Street Social, who gives us four cocktail recipes for next-level merriment:

Mulled Wine

Photo by Aaron Davidson // Growler Magazine

Photo by Aaron Davidson // Growler Magazine

Nothing gets the holiday party started like a big jug of glogg. The Eat Street version is rich, chocolatey, and uses Copper & Kings Apple Brandy to give it a mild punch. Throw a few chunks of citrus in each glass to keep it bright, and shave some nutmeg over each glass for the perfect aroma. Full Mulled Wine recipe here.

Inlander

The Inlander, Eat Street Social // Photo by Aaron Davidson

What’s better than a boozy nightcap in front of the fire? The Inlander uses Jagertee, a spiced rum liqueur that’s a great winter warmer. And if you’re trudging out through the forest to find a Christmas tree, fill your flask with a combo of the Inlander’s spirits. Full Inlander recipe here.

Fall of Temperance

Fall of Temperance, Photo by Aaron Davidson // Growler Magazine

Fall of Temperance // Photo by Aaron Davidson

Oh, you don’t usually drink daiquiris in the dark of winter? Why not? If you need a blast of bitter for your midday prep, this is the drink for you. A pair of dark, spicy rums keep this drink from feeling too tropical. Full Fall of Temperance recipe here.

Falcon Gravy

Falcon Gravy, Eat Street Social, Photo by Aaron Davidson // Growler Magazine

Falcon Gravy, Eat Street Social // Photo by Aaron Davidson

We love egg nog, but all too often during the holidays, this great drink gets the lazy treatment. Pre-made nog, add a few slugs of booze, and done. If you can spare just a little more prep time, we promise that Falcon Gravy will become the nog of your dreams. A combo of espresso and nitro milk stout make it extra indulgent. Full Falcon Gravy recipe here.


PARTY

How do you survive the social aspect of the holidays? Find out in our full, un-edited interview with Rico Gagliano and Brendan Francis Newnam of The Dinner Party Download, in which we discuss cheese logs, ghosting, paleo diets, showing up late, cute rage, and much more.


MAKE

Photo by Aaron Davidson // Growler Magazine

A foraged centerpiece // Photo by Aaron Davidson

We chat with Christine Hoffman of Foxglove Market & Studio who shows us how to create a foraged centerpiece for your holiday table.


FEAST

The ultimate holiday plate, Photo by Matt Lien // Growler Magazine

The ultimate holiday plate // Photo by Matt Lien

A sure-fire way to burn yourself out during the holidays is to do all the cooking yourself. Making food should be a communal exercise. It should take up an entire Saturday afternoon, with a kitchen full of snacking, smiling people drinking sparkling wine dosed with Aperol, while geese are roasting, stock is bubbling, and Burl Ives croons from the speakers overhead.

Since we’re lucky enough to know some of the finest chefs in the Metro, we thought what better way to jump-start our holidays than with a potluck? Our resident chef, Jon Wipfli, assembled an all-star cast, each of whom brought a spectacular holiday side to complement his winter goose—a tender, flavorful bird beyond Bob Cratchit’s wildest dreams.

Confit Goose Legs & Sous Vide Goose Breast with Goose Jüs

Goose leg confit by Jon Wipfli, Photo by Matt Lien // Growler Magazine

Goose leg confit by Jon Wipfli // Photo by Matt Lien

Goose might not be your go-to holiday bird, but this recipe will make you a believer. Don’t let fancy French words like confit and sous vide scare you off, these techniques are within your reach. If you can fill a pan with rendered fat and suck the air out of a Ziploc bag, you’ll do just fine. Full Holiday Goose recipe here.

Smoked Ham Hock and Confit Gizzard Stuffing

Erik Sather's Ham Hock Stuffing, Photo by Matt Lien // Growler Magazine

Erik Sather’s Ham Hock Stuffing // Photo by Matt Lien

Erik Sather, the meat-whisperer behind the wonderful new Lowry Hill Meats, roasts some ham hock, cures some organs, and delivers one of the best pans of stuffing we’ve ever dug into. Full Stuffing recipe here.

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Bacon and Pickled Peppers

Photo by Matt Lien // Growler Magazine

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Bacon and Pickled Peppers // Photo by Matt Lien

Ann Kim, from Pizzeria Lola, brings a side that light on prep and huge on flavor. Simple roasted sweet potatoes get the luxury treatment with thick bacon, pickled peppers and creme fraiche. Full Sweet Potato recipe here.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta Cream

Alex Roberts' roasted Brussels sprouts, Photo by Matt Lien // Growler Magazine

Alex Roberts’ roasted Brussels sprouts // Photo by Matt Lien

Alex Roberts, from Restaurant Alma, takes a cue from Corner Table’s Thomas Boemer and makes a pancetta creem sauce to complement a pan of roasted Brussels sprouts. Full Brussels Sprouts recipe here.

Crunchy Wild Rice Salad with Citrus Dressing

Crunchy wild rice salad, Photo by Matt Lien // Growler Magazine

Crunchy wild rice salad // Photo by Matt Lien

Crunchy Wild Rice Salad with Citrus Dressing

Stephanie Meyer, whose recipes you can find at freshtart.com, makes a fresh and crunchy wild rice salad, full of bright citrus to contrast such a rich and hearty spread. Full Wild Rice Salad recipe here.


DESSERT

Chocolate Stout Devil’s Food with Rosemary Buttercream

Zoe Francois, Photo by Matt Lien // Growler Magazine

Zoe Francois // Photo by Matt Lien

Zoë François of ZoeBakes.com shows you how to create this show-stopping dessert. Pro-tip: make extra sugared cranberries, you’ll want to munch on them all night long. Full Cake recipe here.

Desserts from the Growler Family

Photo by Aaron Davidson // Growler Magazine

Clockwise from top: fudge cake, chocolate pie, Dutch apple pie, black bottom cookies, and whiskey cake // Photo by Aaron Davidson

And from our families to yours: here are our time-tested holiday recipes for (clockwise from top) fudge cake, chocolate pie, Dutch apple pie, black bottom cookies, and whiskey cake. Full dessert recipes from The Growler Family here.

Speak Your Mind