Cranberry Sparkler is a staple cocktail at Christmas time in our house, and one of our favourites.  Perfect for a quiet night in front of the fire watching Christmas movies, or made in batches for a party or event.  The great thing about this cocktail is you can make the syrup ahead of time as the assembly is so easy, and you can freeze the syrup as well so it’s perfect for an impromptu get-together with friends.

Swap the sparkling wine with vodka and ginger beer and make it a Yule Mule for a different variation.

Cranberry Sparkler Christmas cocktail

To make this you will need the following:

  • 12oz fresh cranberries (1 pack)
  • 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 4-inch cinnamon stick, broken in half
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 tablespoon fresh sage, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cups ice
  • 1 750ml bottle sparkling wine

Remove the peel of the lemon using a vegetable peeler.  Combine the lemon peel strips, sugar, water, cinnamon, cloves and sage in a medium-sized saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add the cranberries and return to a boil, constantly stirring. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 5 minutes.

Remove from the heat, cool to room temperature (approximately an hour).  Stir in honey and lemon juice. Press mixture through a sieve, discarding the solids. Cover and chill for at least an hour or up to three days.

To serve, combine the syrup and ice cubes in a large punch bowl. Slowly add the sparkling wine and stir gently until combined.  Ladle into glasses.

Yule Mule – Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of cranberry syrup to a tall glass with 1-1/2oz Vodka and top with ginger beer.

Kickless Yule Mule – Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of cranberry syrup to a tall glass and top off with ginger beer.