Warm Winter Nights

THE MARGARITA GETS a winter makeover for a chilly party night, with hot cider and cranberry juice joining the usual suspects in a festive warming drink. Part toddy, part cocktail, and all good. The key to this beverage’s success is to use a decent tequila, but you already knew that.

Cranberry Tequila Toddy



  • 4 cups apple cider
  • 1 cup cranberry juice cocktail
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • ½ cup gold tequila
  • ¼ cup Cointreau
  • Lime wedges
  • Dried cranberries
  • Orange slices
  • 6 cinnamon sticks

To Prepare

  1. Heat the cider, cranberry juice and orange juice in a saucepan until very hot, but not boiling.
  2. Remove from heat and stir in the tequila and Cointreau.
  3. Serve warm with a squeeze of lime.
  4. Garnish with dried cranberries (for extra zing, pre-soak the dried cranberries in Cointreau for at least 30 minutes), orange slices and a cinnamon stick for stirring.

Lynda Balslev

Lynda Balslev is an award-winning food writer, editor and recipe developer based in the San Francisco Bay area. She authors the nationally syndicated column and blog TasteFood, and co-authored the cookbook Almonds: Recipes, History, Culture (2015 Silver Medal Winner Independent Publisher Awards). She is the 2011 recipient of the Chronicle Books Award (Recipe Writing) to the Symposium for Professional Food Writers, and a 2018 Fellowship Award recipient to the Symposium for Wine Writers at Meadowood, Napa Valley. Lynda’s writing and photography have been recognized by the New York Times Diners Journal, the Los Angeles Times, The Huffington Post and more.