Ink’s Hot Toddy Jello-O Shots

A festive drink without the clink

The beauty of the Hot Toddy is its simplicity. Because sometimes after a cold day, all you want is something quick and easy you can throw together and settle in with on the couch. But if you’re looking for something with a bit more flair to dazzle a holiday party, check out Ink bartender Gabriella Mlynarczyk’s Hot Toddy “shots.”

She made these Hot Toddy cubes to then be combined with hot water for a truly decadent hot cocktail. “They’re like a Jell-O shot. You can make a tray of them and when they’re ready, pour some hot water over them. It’s like an instant Toddy almost,” said Mlynarczyk.

She was inspired to do the shots by Chef Michael Voltaggio’s liquid falafel. “He pretty much did a gelatin falafel and when they fried it it became molten on the inside. So I started thinking how could I use the Jell-O shots in a warm way and I tried it as a stock cube and it worked.”

Hot Toddy Shots by Gabriella Mlynarczyk of Ink

4 packets (28 grams) of Knox unflavored gelatin
1 cup Lagavulin Islay scotch
1 cup fresh lemon juice
1 cup of honey syrup (1:1 ratio honey to hot water that has been infused with cloves, cinnamon and ground ginger overnight then strained)
1/2 cup ginger syrup (1:1 ratio ginger juice to cane sugar)
1/2 cup St. Elizabeth All Spice Dram liqueur or Drambuie
1/2 teaspoon cracked fresh black pepper

1. Pour the Lagavulin in a bowl and add the four packets of gelatin, allow to sit for 1 minute to bloom the gelatin powder.

2. In the meantime bring the rest of your ingredients to a simmer,  but not boil, in a pot. Add the hot honey-lemon mixture to the gelatin and whiskey and stir gently until the gelatin dissolves.

Let sit for 3-4 minutes

3. Whilst waiting prepare a silicone ice cube tray by spraying it with vegetable oil and wiping out the excess with a paper towel. The silicone and oil will make it easier to take the stock cubes out without them sticking or breaking. The mold we use is 1 1/2″ x 1 1/2″ from Bed Bath and Beyond or Cocktail Kingdom sells 1″ ice cube molds

4. Place the ice cube tray on a sheet pan or wooden board. Pour your Hot Toddy mix carefully into each ice cube mold, use a small pitcher or even a small funnel.

5. Place the mold in the refrigerator and allow to set for at least 12 hours, making sure the surface its placed on is even.

To prepare the Toddy:

1. Take a knife that has been dipped in hot water and run it around the edges of one of the cubes, gently pull the sides of the mold away and pull the stock cube out.

2. Slice into quarters then into eighths to make dissolving them easier. Place in your drinking vessel of choice.

3. Pour over 1 cup of either hot tea like ginger or chamomile or just plain hot water–Mlynarczyk infused hers with rosemary and lemon peel–stir for about 30 seconds, add lemon peel and cloves or anise.