Need a little something to warm you up on these freezing winter nights? It seems like the perfect time of year for a Hot Toddy!

hot toddy lemon

Photo via She Knows

A Hot Toddy is an Irish drink intended for wet and cold weather. It is a mix of liquor (usually Irish whiskey) boiling water, sugar, and spices.  There are different variations of course, some use brown sugar, and in Scotland honey is a more likely choice, and some include lemon, and in the US it isn’t uncommon to see ginger ale involved. Most include some combination of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Not only is it a relaxing way to warm up, probably before bed, but good news is it also supposedly can help clear up some of your winter cold and flu symptoms.

This cocktail has always been a loved classic, but recently many restaurants and bars are revamping the drink or innovating their own versions for a fresh and unique take. The most common change seems to be replacing the hot water with another hot non alcoholic liquid, and/or replacing the whiskey with a mix of multiple liquors. It seems as though few are willing to mess with the spices though, understandably, as cinnamon and nutmeg are winter beverage staples. Personally I’m most interested in trying the variations that replace hot water with hot apple cider or hot coffee, and replacing the lemon with an orange liquor doesn’t sound like a bad idea either.

hot toddy

Photo via Shape

So cozy up by a nice fireplace to drink away your sniffles, or huddle together with friends at your favorite bar, or if you’re in the mood to travel, and I have a feeling that you are, take a trip to Ireland and try out the real deal. After all, it is their low tourist season, so the rates are down and you can drink your Hot Toddy among the locals instead of crowds of foreign visitors like yourself.

What will you put in your Hot Toddy?


American by chance, but Roman by choice, Sarah is currently feeding her adventurous soul with expatriatism and pizza. Her finest moments are always on the wrong bus with a backpack and an upside down map, waiting to see what the world’s got for her next, so long as she can blog about it. She likes writing more than talking, dolphins more than humans, old movies more than new, and Rome more than anything else.

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