This is your call to arms: it’s time to reclaim Christmas. Knock over a gingerbread house, wear your Christmas jumper backwards, and shake up 20 experimental festive tipples that promise to give your nan’s sorry-looking Snowball a run for its money. Vive la résistance!

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year is upon us. Parties for hosting, marshmallows for toasting, carolling out in the snow, and all that. While I love the festive season as much as the next person (and I do), December is cracking on, and I’m growing tired of the obligatory mulled wine/Hot Toddy combo on every bar and pub menu. And if you’re reading this, you probably are too.

Take eggnog. Whoever created it probably thought it would be cool for maybe a year or two, and then something new and more delicious would be invented. After all, it’s essentially milky, sugary, boozy eggs, which is pretty much every ingredient that existed in the 13th century. And yet, here we are, hundreds of years later, grimacing as we gulp down spicy yolks.

My theory is this: It isn’t because eggnog is actually all that delicious, it’s just that no one has managed to come up with anything better. It’s the same reason radio stations churn out Slade’s Merry Xmas Everybody every single year without fail.

If eggnog is essentially Slade in this hypothetical scenario of mine, the recipes that follow are the equivalent of (Christmas Time) Don’t Let The Bells End by The Darkness. They’re modern, they’re a little bit bonkers, but make no mistake: they are undeniably festive. And my god, you will love them.

Some cocktails were lovingly created by our bartender pals, others are from ambassadors behind well-known spirits. All of them are potential future classics. Don your Gareth Southgate-inspired Christmas jumper and whack the virtual fireplace on your MacBook. It’s time to get festive 2018-style…

Festive cocktailsGingerbread Colada

Gingerbread Colada

What you should buy: 40ml Bacardi Añejo Cuatro rum, 20ml Bepi Tosolini Saliza Amaretto, 20ml Coco Lopez (or another coconut cream), 20ml gingerbread syrup, 50ml pineapple juice, 10ml lemon juice

What you should do: Add all ingredients into shaker. Shake with cubes ice. Strain and serve long over cubed ice. Admire handiwork.

Festive cocktailsAlmande Apricot Flip

Almande Apricot Flip

What you should buy: 50ml Baileys Almande, 50ml apricot and cardamom syrup, 10ml agave syrup, 50ml coconut milk

What you should do: To make the apricot and cardamom syrup, crush two cardamom pods in a mixing jug. Add 100g apricot jam, pour 50ml hot water over, and stir until smooth. To make the drink, add both syrups to a glass and fill with ice. Pour over the Baileys Almande and coconut milk. Stir until blended together and top with ice. Grate nutmeg over the top of the glass.

Festive cocktailsSweet and Z

Sweet and Z

By: Ago Perrone for The Connaught, London

What you should buy: 30ml Patrón Reposado, 30ml Martini Rubino and Punt e Mes, 30ml Galliano L’Aperitivo, Cacao Cascara light cream and Galliano L’Autentico.

What you should do: Stir all ingredients in a mixing glass. Strain into Champagne coupe glass over diamond of ice. Spray with grapefruit and basil essence.

Festive cocktailsTito’s Brew

Tito’s Brew

What you should buy: 50ml Diplomático Réserva Exclusiva, 15ml Muscovado sugar syrup, 15ml lemon juice, 150ml hot water, 3 dashes Bob’s Abbotts bitters, cinnamon stick

What you should do: Add all ingredients into a pan. Warm through until hot but not boiling. Garnish with cinnamon stick. Duel an elf.

Festive cocktailsThe Roselle

The Roselle

What you should buy: 50ml Cocchi Rosa, 5ml agave syrup, hot hibiscus tea (to top), 1 orange segment, 3 cloves

What you should do: Brew the tea and add to the other ingredients. Garnish with orange segment and cloves.

Festive cocktailsJohn ‘n’ Pickle

John ‘n’ Pickle

What you should buy: 50ml Johnnie Walker Black, 2 dashes black walnut bitters, 10ml demerara sugar syrup, 2 tsp caramelised onion chutney, 1.25ml distilled vinegar

What you should do: To make the demerara sugar syrup, pour 50ml hot water over 100g demerara sugar and stir until dissolved. Then add the chutney to a mixing glass with 25ml Johnnie Walker Black and the syrup. Add two ice cubes, stir until half melted, then add the rest of the ingredients. Top with ice and stir to mix. Hum ‘Let It Snow’.

Festive cocktailsSpiced Chocolate Sour

Spiced Chocolate Sour

By: Dan Berger of Iceberg Consultancy for Motley at Qbic London, London

What you should buy: 30ml Cognac, 20ml Mozart Dark Chocolate, 20ml lemon juice, 15ml clove syrup, 20ml egg white, 10ml Port

What you should do: Dry shake then shake with ice. Float Port on top. Serve in large rocks glass, garnish with dehydrated orange with clove pierced in.

Festive cocktailsThe Peacock

The Peacock (serves 8)

By: Ivy Mix for Diego at Public Hotel, New York

What you should buy: 255ml Absolut Elyx Vodka, 85ml lavender syrup, 85ml lemon juice, 85ml tangerine purée, 10 dashes of Cardamom Bitters, soda to top.

What you should do: Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker, whip shake, and pour into large-format vessel. Top with soda and garnish with mint bouquet.

Festive cocktailsChocolate Negroni

Chocolate Negroni

By: Bunga Bunga, London

What you should buy: 25ml Bombay Sapphire Gin, 20ml Martini Rubino, 20ml Martini Riserva Speciale Bitter, 10ml dark chocolate liqueur, 5ml maple syrup, burnt orange wedge, chocolate shavings

What you should do: Fill glass with ice to the top. Pour the Martini Riserva Speciale Rubino, Martini Riserva Speciale Bitter and Bombay Sapphire gin over ice. Stir ingredients gently. Add dark chocolate liqueur and maple syrup. Garnish. Defend Santa’s honour.

Festive cocktailsTahitian Coffee

Tahitian Coffee (serves 2)

By: Slowly Shirley, New York

What you should buy: 85ml Plantation Barbados 2001, 85ml Encanto Pisco, 28ml lime juice, 28ml orange juice, 28ml passion fruit syrup, 28ml guava nectar, 28ml cold brew concentrate, 14ml falernum, 42ml honey syrup

What you should do: Shake, strain, garnish with crushed ice, grated coffee and an orchid.

Festive cocktailsOTT Irish Coffee

OTT Irish Coffee

By: Joaquín Simó for Pouring Ribbons, New York

What you should buy: 42ml Knappogue Castle Irish Whiskey, 7ml rich (2:1) Demerara syrup, 142ml hot coffee, 5 drops saline solution (or tiny pinch of salt), 3 cardamom pods, 140-170ml heavy cream, 2 tbsp white sugar, zest from 1 orange, 2 dashes Regan’s No 6 Orange bitters.

What you should do: Muddle the cardamom pods in the bottom of a pre-heated Irish coffee glass, add whiskey, Demerara syrup, hot coffee and saline solution and stir. Whip the cream with the orange zest, white sugar and Regan’s No 6 Orange Bitters until thickened, but still pourable. Float cream over the top of the drink by pouring gently over the back of a spoon. Garnish with lightly toasted marshmallow.

Festive cocktailsHot Gin Old Fashioned

Hot Gin Old Fashioned

What you should buy: 50ml Hendrick’s Gin, 10ml sugar syrup, 3 dashes orange bitters, 50ml boiling water, orange twist.

What you should do: Gently heat Hendrick’s, sugar syrup and orange bitters in a pan. Add boiling water. Serve in tankard or teacup and garnish with an orange twist. Kick Christmas tree over.

Festive cocktailsWake Me Up, F**k Me Up

Wake Me Up, F**k Me Up

By: Kenneth McCoy for Ward III and The Rum House, New York

What you should buy: 1.5 oz Peloton Mezcal, 1 oz Mr. Black, 0.5 oz Giffard Banana, 2 dashes Scrappy’s Chocolate Bitters, 1 oz oat milk

What you should do: Shake all ingredients vigorously with ice, double strain into chilled goblet, garnish with 3 coffee beans.

Festive cocktailsFeliz Navidad

Feliz Navidad

By: W New York in Times Square, New York

What you should buy: 42ml Casa Noble Crystal Tequila, 21ml Cointreau, 14ml fresh lemon juice, 21ml simple syrup, 0.5 tsp cinnamon, 56ml apple cider.

What you should do: Combine in ingredients in a mixing glass, stir, and serve on the rocks with a cinnamon cayenne sugar rim.

Festive cocktailsThe Belle of St-Clement

The Belle of St-Clement

By: Mint Gun Club, London

What you should buy: 10ml St Germain, 5ml Mandarin Acacia honey syrup, 80ml silver tip jasmine tea, 2 drops of rosemary droplets or tincture.

What you should do: Brew tea, combine all ingredients and serve. Eat a mince pie whole.

Festive cocktailsSpiked Hot Chocolate

Spiked Hot Chocolate

By: Anne Becerra, Treadwell Park, New York

What you should buy: 42ml Appleton Estate Rum, 14ml Luxardo Maraschino liqueur, 113ml hot chocolate, marshmallows, Pirouette cookie.

What you should do: Add rum, Luxardo Maraschino liqueur and hot chocolate into a mug. Set marshmallows on top and lightly toast them with a cooking torch. Garnish with a Pirouette cookie.

Festive cocktailsDusk Till Dawn

Dusk Till Dawn

By: The Fire + Ice Terraces at Radio, ME London

What you should buy: 35ml Patrón Añejo, 15ml Bepi Tosolini Saliza Amaretto, 15ml vanilla syrup, 15ml lemon juice, sparkling wine to top.

What you should do: Shake Patrón, amaretto, vanilla syrup and lemon juice over ice, strain and top with sparkling wine.

Festive cocktailsGentlemen’s Sour

Gentlemen’s Sour

What you should buy: 50ml Jack Daniel’s Gentleman Jack, 25ml lemon juice, 20ml sugar syrup, a dash of bitters, cubed ice, lemon slice.

What you should do: Combine all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker together with ice. Strain into a tumbler filled with cubed ice. Garnish with a slice of fresh lemon and serve.

Festive cocktailsPagan Rituals

Pagan Rituals

By: Stuart Bale, Crucible, London

What you should buy: 15ml Jo Hilditch British Cassis, 35ml blanco Tequila, 15ml elderflower cordial, 2ml malic acid solution, 100ml sparkling green tea.

What you should do: Build all ingredients apart from cassis in a tall glass. Float cassis on top. Garnish with ginger ribbon.

Festive cocktailsProper Pink Gin Festive Bennett

Proper Pink Gin Festive Bennett

What you should buy: 50ml That Boutique-y Gin Company Proper Pink Gin, 25ml Rose’s Lime Juice, 25ml mulled wine*

What you should do: Shake all the ingredients with ice, strain into a chilled Martini glass and garnish with edible gold glitter. Totally fabulous.

*For the perfect mulled wine, use 75ml Christmas Mulled Cup, 1 bottle of fruity red and 60g of sugar. Heat gently to dissolve the sugar and allow to cool.