Eggnog, wassail and a savory hot toddy are all wonderful seasonal sips to enjoy cozied up around the fire. However, this year I have a new favorite to offer guests, Noe’s Holiday Mule. A new holiday themed cocktail featured at the Jim Beam Stillhouse annual Home for the Holidays in Clermont, KY (five minutes from downtown Bardstown), sparkling event featuring craft cocktails, a Beam tasting along with gourmet buffet accented with Kentucky bluegrass music. 

The evening’s host was Jim Bean Master Distiller Fred Noe III, seventh generation distiller and great-grandson of the legendary Kentucky bourbon maker. Fred, the colorful warm hearted Beam patriarch held court, lead guests through the proper technique of tasting and savoring the differences between bourbon styles.

“Damn, that’s good,” proclaimed Fred lifting a tasting glass after checking the color, aroma and taste, which includes his Kentucky chew style of mimicking chewing the bourbon before swallowing.

The night included a vertical tasting of four different bourbons, featuring the extra-aged Jim Beam Black, which is the featured bourbon in Noe’s Holiday Mule. The recipe is a little involved but hey, it’s the holidays when a little extra effort is almost expected. So treat your guests special and this festive mule a try and toast the holidays in style.

Noe’s Holiday Mule
1.5 parts (1 ½ ounce) Jim Beam Black
.75 parts (¾ ounce) Cranberry Cardamom Simple Syrup
.25 parts (¼ ounce lime juice
ginger beer to top off - about 2 ounces (Beam’s Stillhouse mixlogists recommends Butchertown or Gosling’s brand ginger beer)
2-3 Sparkling Beam Black soaked cranberries
1 sprig (about 4-5 inches long) fresh rosemary

In a shaker or small pitcher combine Jim Beam Black, Cranberry Cardamom Simple Syrup, lime juice. Fill a copper Mule Cup or old-fashion glass with crushed or cracked ice. Pour in drink mixture and top off with a splash of ginger beer. Drop in the couple of cranberries and garnish with rosemary spring.

For extra drama light the top of the rosemary with a lighter and allow to burn for a few seconds before blowing out flame before adding the garnish.)

Jim Black “Sparkling” Cranberries (For the Noe's Holiday Mule)
1 (12-ounce) bag fresh Cranberries
Jim Beam Black
Pour cranberries into a sealable container or zip-lock bag. Cover with Jim Beam Black. Soak for 24-hours. Drain liquid. * Roll the Jim Black soaked cranberries in brown sugar. Store in refrigerator in sealed container in a single layer until ready to use.

Cranberry Cardamom Simple Syrup (For the Noe's Holiday Mule)

4 cups water
4 cups cranberry juice
1 cup sugar (or dark brown sugar can be used)
cardamom pods (can substitute whole cardamom seeds)

Combine water, cranberry juice and sugar in a 1 ½ qt. saucepan. Cover (float on the surface) the surface with cardamom pods. Bring to a boil for 3 minutes, then remove. Taste and adjust sweetness to taste. Stain, discard cardamom pods, and cool. Store in refrigerator in an airtight container until ready to use.

* No need to waste the berry-saturated Jim Beam Black. Beam recommends if you have some cranberries to spare, macerate them and let the liquid infuse until desired taste, then add it to your favorite sugar cookie recipe. Other uses I can recommend: Add to pancake or waffle batter or to a green salad to add a little holiday zip. 


Note from Staff:

The Noe's Mule is really delicious. It is also so much fun to read about and think  about --and some will make it, but for some of us sports fans, we don't have the inclination to take the time to do that, so we've asked Suzanne Corbett to give us a few more "easy" to make bourbon cocktails for the holidays. 


Kentucky Mule

3 parts ginger beer
2 parts Jim Beam Black Label
splash of lime juice
Lime wheel garnish

Mix, shake and our over ice filled copper mule mug or highball glass. Garnish with lime wheel.

Cup of Cheer

1.5 parts (1 ½ ounces) Knob Creek Rye
.75 parts (3/4 ounce ) Dolin Rouge
.25 parts (1/4 ounces) Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur
dash of Regan’s Orange Bitters
orange peel slice for garnish

Mix, shake and pour into a martini glass. Garnish with a small orange peel slice

Ginger Cider

1 part Jim Beam Apple, Apple Liqueur with Bourbon
3 parts Ginger Ale
Lemon Wedge

PHOTO CREDITS: James Corbett