January 11, 2013 is NATIONAL HOT TODDY DAY!

Toddies Slingshot


Today is National Hot Toddy Day!  The basic recipe for a hot toddy includes just four ingredients with an optional two garnishes:  honey, lemon, hot water, and the brown spirit of your choice (usually whiskey, brandy or rum).  Sometimes I defer to tradition and make mine with Scotch (toddies originated in 18th-century Scotland).  And sometimes I play with the flavor profiles of the different brown spirits and mix things up a bit:  Bourbon highlights vanilla notes, while spiced rum pumps up the aromatics.  You can’t go wrong, so get creative.


  • 1 ounce brandy, whisk(e)y, Bourbon or rum
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/4 lemon
  • hot water
  • tea bag, optional
  • cinnamon stick for garnish, optional
  • lemon wheel for garnish, optional


  1. Coat the bottom of an Irish coffee glass or ceramic mug with the honey.
  2. Add the brown spirit of your choice.
  3. Add the freshly squeezed juice of the lemon quarter.
  4. Separately, heat the water in a tea kettle.  (Option: Add the tea bag to make hot tea.)
  5. Pour the steaming water (or tea) into the glass.
  6. Stir.  (Option: Stir with a cinnamon stick.)
  7. Sip, savor and enjoy!


Check out some of the history and regional toddy variations at the University of Wikipedia.