7 cocktail recipes for your New Year’s Eve bash

Say sayonara to 2020 with one of these cocktails in your hand.

It’s been a year people, but we’ve made it. Time to toast a not-so-fond farewell to 2020 and look forward to what 2021 will bring. And the best way to do it? With one of these delicious cocktails in hand.

We scanned the menus of The Star’s favourite bars to poach some classic cocktails and tasty in-house inventions worthy of the milestone.

Bartender at Will & Flow
Bartender at Will & Flow
1.      Lychee Sloe Gin Sour

At Garden Kitchen & Bar’s open-air deck bar, the classic sour cocktail gets the tropical Queensland treatment with lychees, smooth sloe gin and fruity garnishes. The pretty pink hue is a winner too – earn extra Insta points by coordinating your NYE look to match.

Lychee Sloe Gin Sour at GKB
Lychee Sloe Gin Sour at Garden Kitchen & Bar

Ingredients

  • 15ml Lychee Monin
  • 45ml Hayman’s Sloe Gin
  • 20ml egg white
  • 20ml fresh lemon juice
  • Soda water, to top

Method

  1. Add all ingredients to shaker and dry shake (without ice).
  2. Add ice to the shaker and ‘wet shake’.
  3. Double strain through a bar sieve over ice into crystal highball.
  4. Top with soda, garnish and serve.
Bartender at Bar Tikram
Bartender at Bar Tikram
2.      Million Dollar Martini

Start your new year feeling like a million bucks with this playful martini from Garden Kitchen & Bar. It’s worth memorising this recipe, too – it’s the drink to be seen sipping during the Magic Millions Carnival; the January event that kicks off the Gold Coast social calendar for the year.

Ingredients

  • 45ml Ketel One Vodka
  • 15ml Aperol
  • 15ml Vanilla syrup
  • 30ml Passionfruit pulp
  • 30ml fresh lime juice

Method

  1. Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice.
  2. Shake and double strain through a bar sieve into a coupette glass.
  3. Garnish with a wedge of passionfruit and serve.
Million Dollar Martini at GKB
Million Dollar Martini at Garden Kitchen & Bar
3. Strawberry caipiroska

A spin on the iconic Brazilian cocktail Caipirinha, a caipiroska swaps out the Cachaça for vodka. Garden Kitchen & Bar goes one better by muddling strawberries along with the lime, for a fresh, fruity cocktail that’s as tasty as it looks.

Strawberry Caipiroska at GKB
Strawberry Caipiroska at Garden Kitchen & Bar

Ingredients

  • 4 lime wedges
  • 3 fresh strawberries
  • 60ml Ketel One Vodka
  • 15ml Strawberry Monin

Method

  1. Muddle the lime and fresh strawberries in a shaker.
  2. Add monin, vodka and ice, and shake.
  3. Tip the contents of the shaker (without straining) into a double rocks glass, garnish with a lime wheel and serve.
4.      Lime & lemongrass margarita      

Brisbane’s hottest new bar, Will & Flow, is the perfect spot to discover your new favourite riff on a classic cocktail: a lemongrass-infused margarita. A few days before the big night, sneak a lemongrass stalk in your preferred bottle of tequila and you’ll be ready to shake up the New Year.   

Ingredients

  • 45ml lemongrass-infused tequila
  • 15ml Cointreau
  • 2 bar spoons of agave nectar
  • 2 wedges fresh lime          

Method

  1. Muddle the lime wedges with the agave nectar in a cocktail shaker, then add lemongrass-infused tequila and Cointreau.
  2. Fill shaker with ice and shake vigorously.
  3. Double strain through a bar sieve and serve in a salt-rimmed margarita glass with some dehydrated orange.
5. The Australian negroni

The negroni is what bartenders drink when they clock off. The classic makes a League-themed appearance at Will & Flow – featuring a nip of Queensland’s own Brisbane Gin and New South Wales’ Brookies Gin from just over the border. Add your local flavour to it this New Years with your favourite Aussie gin, vermouth and aperitif (or the classic Campari). 

Ingredients                                                                                     –

  • 15ml Brisbane Dry Gin
  • 15ml Brookies Slow Gin
  • 15ml Campari
  • 10ml Sweet vermouth (Martini Rosso)
  • Orange bitters

Method

  1. Add Brisbane Dry and Brookies Slow Gin to a mixing glass, with the Campari and sweet vermouth.
  2. Add two drops of smoked orange bitters and stir over ice.
  3. Rim a rocks glass with burnt orange peel, pour negroni over ice and garnish with orange peel twist.
6. Champagne Cocktail

The Champagne Cocktail’s balance of fizz, bitters, sugar and citrus is as fresh on the eve of 2021 at it was when it first appeared in the 1860s. “It is as old as its mention, yet simple and easy on the palate,” says Behzad Vaziri, The Star Bars Manager in Sydney.

Method

  1. Place a raw (brown) sugar cube at the bottom of a Champagne flute and add a couple of dashes of Angostura bitters.
  2. Gently top up with Champagne.
  3. Garnish with a long ribbon of lemon peel.

Love a little sparkle? Discover four more of Behzad’s favourite Champagne cocktails.

Champagne Cocktail
Champagne Cocktail
7. The Moscow Mule 

Another classic, the Moscow Mule is refreshing, delicious and – best of all – a cinch to make. Behzad adds extra kick with muddled fresh ginger, but a good ginger beer will see you through ’til midnight.

Classic Moscow Mule Cocktail
The Classic Moscow Mule Cocktail

Ingredients

  • 60ml vodka
  • 30ml lime juice
  • 15ml sugar syrup (1-part sugar dissolved in 1-part water)
  • Top up with ice and ginger beer* (or use fresh ginger)

Method

  1. Build the cocktail in a metal mug or a tall glass.
  2. If you’re using fresh ginger, muddle a small piece in your mug before adding the other ingredients.  
  3. Add ingredients (using plenty of ice) and shake. Serve in a glass.

*If you are using a sweet ginger beer, cut down the sugar syrup to 10mls.