Holiday Spiced Rum Punch

As we near the holidays, I'm all about over-the-top food and cocktails. This is the time of year to break out all your most epic recipes, crazy garnishes, indulgent treats, and unnecessary but excellent culinary flair. This rum punch is perfect for the season!

This punch is a celebration of all things December and holiday. It features an over-abundance of seasonal ingredients and flavors, including warming spices, fresh herbs, and all the unique December fruit you can get your hands on. It's festive, colorful, and oh-so-special.

Rum punch (or bourbon punch) is my solution to sangria. To be completely honest, I don't love wine. I try to enjoy it, and sometimes I can get in the mood. But I'd happily take a distilled product over wine any day. However, I do feel like I sometimes miss out with sangria. Enter this boozy rum punch! It has all the best aspects of sangria, minus the annoying wine, plus the most gorgeous spiced rum.

In case you missed my very exciting announcement last month, I'm now partnering with my Kaua'i neighbors at Koloa Rum to develop some fun and seasonal rum cocktail recipes to share. I designed this show-stopping Spiced Pomegranate Daiquiri for November, and now this equally fun rum punch for December. Rum is truly a versatile spirit that's great year-round, not just in tiki drinks (although of course those are indescribably wonderful too).

This punch makes use of Koloa's spiced rum, which has a lovely amber color and complex, warming spice flavors. I complement those with sweet apple cider, tart pomegranate juice, and zippy ginger beer for a nicely-balanced profile. You can use whatever seasonal fruit you like. Top it off with a couple sprigs of thyme and a cinnamon stick and you'll have yourself a cornucopia of holiday ingredients! In this case, more is definitely more.

One thing I love about this drink is that you can change up the ingredients however you like. It would work great with bourbon instead of rum, with rosemary instead of thyme, and with whatever fruit you love. I've shown persimmon, pomegranate, and clementine since they're such iconic holiday fruits, but apple, pear, cranberries, and any sort of orange would work beautifully too. Mix and match to use what looks fresh and what will complement your menu.

There is one important logistical thing to keep in mind here though: this drink will work best if you plan ahead. Mix together your rum, cider, and pomegranate juice, and let it sit in the fridge overnight with the fruit slices. The fruit will infuse the cocktail with such wonderful, complex, festive flavor. Then, when you're ready to serve, add the ginger beer and garnish it up!

One of the things I love about punch-style cocktails like this is that they're easy to scale up as needed. The amounts below are for a single drink; multiply as you wish! You can easily make a big pitcher to serve a crowd, or a small pitcher for a holiday date night. Bonus points if you have an old-school, over-the-top crystal punch bowl. (Clearly I don't, but I've shown this drink in an antique Waterford bowl that was passed down from my grandmother; ssssshhh don't tell!).

Isn't this drink just plain fun? It has such holiday spirit and is so beautiful. It could even make for a great table centerpiece. Happy holidays, I hope they're merry and bright! This punch will certainly help achieve that.

Please share your creation so I can see how you've interpreted the concept! Tag "The Rogue Brussel Sprout" on Facebook or hashtag #theroguebrusselsprout on Instagram.

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Koloa Rum. However, all opinions and thoughts are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep The Rogue Brussel Sprout running.

Love the combination of fruit and herbs here? I think it yields such wonderful, complex flavors and aromas! If you do too, you'll also enjoy this Rosemary Fig Old Fashioned.

Thoughts About Ingredients
(These are just suggestions, since rogue is more fun than recipe)

  • 2 oz Koloa Kaua'i Spice Rum. Or, if you can't get your hands on this, choose another amber-colored spiced rum. I'd stay away from dark spiced rum since it will be too assertive (and will make your drink a weird color!).
  • 3 oz apple cider
  • 0.5 oz pomegranate juice
  • Assorted seasonal fruits. The sky is the limit! Think super-seasonal options like persimmon, apple, pomegranate, cranberries, oranges, etc.
  • 1 oz ginger beer
  • Cinnamon stick
  • Sprig or two of fresh seasonal herbs
Thoughts About Method
(These are just suggestions, be creative and make it yours)
  1. The amounts shown above are per drink. Decide how many drinks you want to make, and multiply accordingly.
  2. In a pitcher, combine the rum, apple cider, pomegranate juice, and slices of seasonal fruit. Let it sit in the fridge for at least a few hours, or ideally overnight.
  3. When you're ready to serve, pour into individual glasses.
  4. Top each glass off with ginger beer.
  5. Garnish with additional seasonal fruit, a cinnamon stick, and a sprig or two of fresh herbs.


Please follow The Rogue Brussel Sprout on Instagram!