Tasty Punches, Pitchers and Batched Cocktails for Easy NYE Drinking

Fish House Punch Recipe

Featured image by @jayrummy


Whilst NYE is a time to celebrate the year that was and to welcome the year ahead, some may find themselves getting stuck behind the bar for hours mixing drinks or even worse, drinking poorly made cocktails made by that friend that has no idea how to mix a decent drink. For bartenders and aspiring home bartenders it may be part of the celebrations and enjoyable to get behind the stick but for those not comfortable or familiar with making cocktails then why not try pre-batching. Batching your cocktails prior means you can prepare your cocktails ahead of time, focus on balance and flavour and spend more time socialising. Some cocktails actually develop and work even better when batched prior.

Click images for full recipes.


Spirit-forward cocktails such as the Old Fashioned, Negroni, Boulevardier and Manhattan lend themselves to batching. The flavours seem to develop and meld together once bottled and chilled prior to service. You have two methods in which you can prepare and batch spirit-forward cocktails – dilute or not to dilute.


Adding dilution simply replaces the step of stirring on ice. Generally, stirring a spirit-forward cocktail will result in dilution of approximately 18-22% so you’ll need to do some maths to work out the ideal amount of filtered water you will need to add. Adding the dilution prior means that you can skip the step of stirring your spirit-forward cocktail and simply refrigerate, pour and serve for an extremely fast cocktail – the only extra step is to garnish your drink.


If you prefer the finesse, skill and theatrics of making a good cocktail, then adding dilution is probably not your thing. This means that you will still need to mix your spirit-forward cocktail on ice before serving but can still take advantage of pre-batching, saving you time by combining your ingredients as well as letting the flavours integrate before mixing.


Punches are probably more tailored for a NYE celebration as spirit-forward drinks can be an acquired taste for some. You’ll please the masses with a fruit punch or pitcher with their easy drinking nature and often citrusy, sweeter notes. Any spirits, syrups, bitters and liqueurs can also be batched and bottled the day before if you have a busy schedule but anything that contains freshly squeezed juices (orange, lemon, lime, etc.) is best to squeeze fresh on the day or prior to serving. Citrus juice flavours degrade relatively quickly so the fresher the better.

What am I drinking this New Year’s Eve?

I’ll be mixing up a Fish House Punch with crystal clear block ice to get the afternoon kick started. I so happen to have a one litre bottle of Appleton Estate waiting to be put to good use. Preparation will begin the day before – loading up a small esky with water for some directional freezing (maybe some citrus wheels frozen in the middle) and then adding lemon peel and sugar to a vacuum sealed bag for an overnight oleo-saccharum.

I plan on reserving the spirit-forward cocktails for later in the evening, with pre-batched and bottled Vieux Carre already with added dilution so I can pull it straight from the fridge to pour and serve before finishing with a Luxardo Maraschino Cherry garnish.

Featured Instagrammers

  1. Amaro Carnival Punch – @daniyeljones
  2. Fish House Punch – @jayrummy
  3. Margarita O’ Love – @alchemyandatwist
  4. Vieux Carre – @benarbour
  5. Spiced Apple Punch – @areindeer
  6. Cafe Racer – @artintheage
  7. Coconut Milk Punch – @jayrummy

What’s your favourite NYE cocktail?

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