Festive Friendsgiving Cocktails to Toast the Holidays

(Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images)
(Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images) /

Raise a toast to the holidays with these festive Friendsgiving cocktails!

Friendsgiving is a fun and festive way to begin the holiday season. A meaningful way to show our friends how special they are to us by gathering around the table (at home or virtual) to break bread and enjoy a feast. This holiday began as an alternative to Thanksgiving for those who could not be with family during on the traditional fourth Thursday of November.

The concept of Friendsgiving was first introduced around 2007 and it quickly became popular, becoming a “second” Thanksgiving usually celebrated the week before Thanksgiving. It may be even more meaningful in 2020 because many of us will not be able to travel to visit with family during Thanksgiving season.

Getting together with friends to celebrate with a feast of roast turkey, candied yams, green bean casserole and all the fixin’s is always a good time, but don’t limit yourself to the traditional Thanksgiving menu on Friendsgiving. Ask your friends to bring a dish and make it a fancy pot luck. Offer to make the appetizers and cocktails and let your friends provide the entree, sides and dessert. Brie, Cranberry and Proscuitto Bites make a fabulous starter for your event. Gaby Dalken (creator of What’s Gaby Cooking) is known as the “Queen of Friendsgiving”. She likes to offer her guests her tasty version of Pigs in a Blanket as a starter – puff pastry sprinkled with Gaby’s This Is Everything Seasoning, Dijon and wholegrain mustard wrapped around  kielbasa.

Add some seasonal cocktails and get the party started. If your Friendsgiving is virtual this year, pack up the ingredients for cocktails and leave it on your friend’s doorstep so they can enjoy making the cocktails with you during your virtual celebration.

Rum Punch always makes an event a celebration. Greet your Friendsgiving guests – either virtually or in person with a tumbler of Rum Punch. Mount Gay Eclipse Barbados Rum has distinctive notes of vanilla and banana, with underlying notes of caramel, summer fruit and spice.

The Original Rum Punch


  • 1.5 oz Mount Gay Eclipse Barbados Rum
  • 0.75 oz Sugar Syrup
  • 0.5 oz fresh Lime Juice
  • 3 oz Water
  • 1 Dash Angostura Bitters
  • Lime or Orange Wedges
  • Freshly Grated Nutmeg


Put all ingredients in a glass. Add crushed ice. Stir, add grated nutmeg on top and enjoy!

After a stupendous afternoon of feasting with friends, offer your guests a little pick-me-up Lavender Chills Cocktail made with cold brew. The Botanist Islay Dry Gin is hand forged and distilled in Islay, Scotland and is a must-have for your holiday bar cart:

Lavender Chills 


  • 1.5 oz The Botanist Islay Dry Gin
  • 1.5 oz Cold Brew
  • 0.5 oz Lavender Syrup
  • 2 oz Tonic Water


Pour The Botanist Islay Dry Gin, Cold Brew and Lavender syrup into cocktail shaker. Shake and strain over ice into a Highball glass. Top with Tonic Water.

Lavender “Tea” Syrup:

1:1 sugar to water. Bring to Boil, turn off, add lavender and let sit for 10 minutes to infuse lavender. Serve when cooled

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What’s on your Friendsgiving menu? Wishing you and yours the happiest holidays!