Cocktail of the Month – Hot Ward 8

Perfect to keep you warm on a winter hike, ice skating fun or any time you need to warm your bones.

This hot spin on the classic Ward 8 cocktail makes enough for a small crowd of ice skaters or snowshoers—exactly what you’ll want after a day out in the cold. Just pack the heated whiskey, citrus, and pomegranate mix into a thermos, and it’ll still be warm when you’re ready for it.


A steaming-hot cocktail for your cold-weather adventures.
Keeping a cocktail hot for a whole afternoon or evening is easy with an insulated thermos; just warm your carrying container first by filling it with boiling water while you prep your drink.
The Ward 8 is usually made with lemon and orange juices, but here you get a concentrated citrus flavor from an oleo-saccharum—an intense syrup made with lemon and orange peels muddled with sugar.
This recipe easily scales up or down to accommodate the size of your thermos. Just adjust the Angostura to taste.
Heatproof container with minimum 36-ounce capacity, insulated 1.1-quart thermos, fine-mesh strainer

For the Oleo-Saccharum:
Zest from 2 lemons
Zest from 1 orange
4 1/2 ounces (130g) sugar
For the Cocktails:
8 ounces (235ml) boiling water, plus more for preheating thermos
16 ounces (475ml) rye whiskey, such as Bulleit 95
4 ounces (120ml) unsweetened pomegranate juice
2 ounces (60ml) dry orange curaçao, such as Pierre Ferrand
8 dashes Angostura bitters
8 lemon zest strips, for garnish (optional)
For the Oleo-Saccharum: In a heatproof container with at least a 36-ounce capacity, toss together lemon and orange zests with sugar. Muddle for 30 seconds to release the oil from the zests. Cover and let stand at room temperature for at least 8 and up to 12 hours.

For the Cocktails: Pre-warm thermos by filling with water just off the boil and let stand. Meanwhile, pour rye whiskey, 8 ounces boiling water, pomegranate juice, orange curaçao, and bitters over the oleo-saccharum. Stir well until sugar is completely dissolved.

Discard hot water from thermos, then carefully strain rye mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into thermos (a funnel can help avoid spills); discard spent zests. Seal thermos. Optionally, when ready to drink, add new lemon zests to your cocktail, expressing the oils over the top first.