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A classic hot toddy consists of nothing more than whiskey, sugar, hot water, and perhaps a cinnamon stick for stirring. But if you're looking for something spicier to warm you up this winter, this hot toddy recipe is just the ticket. Preferably enjoyed with appetizers by a roaring fire, this warm whiskey drink is packed with fragrant baking spices (cardamom and anise, in this case), and sweet honey draws the flavor of the spices into an infused simple syrup. You can substitute any wintry spices you have on hand—like cinnamon or freshly grated nutmeg—or you could add sliced fresh ginger to the pot for a delicious kick of heat. Use a bourbon like Bulleit, or for an interesting slightly smoky twist, try Wigle Oaxaca Rye.


Credit: Greg DuPree

Recipe Summary

15 mins
10 mins
Serves 4 to 6


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Toast cardamom pods and star anise in a medium saucepan over medium-low, undisturbed, until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Add water and honey; bring to a simmer over medium. Simmer, covered, until fragrant, 10 to 12 minutes.

  • Stir in bourbon and lemon juice; keep warm over low until ready to serve. Serve in mugs; garnish with star anise.