Holiday Cocktail How-To: Make the Festivus for Your Next Party

A Festivus for the rest of us! There are plenty of reasons to celebrate this time of year. We asked Bryan Schneider, the bar director for Quality Branded — which runs NYC hotspot Squares, where Kendall Jenner and A$AP Rocky have been spotted — to dream up a crowd-pleasing holiday cocktail for Us.

Inspired by Festivus, the secular parody holiday popularized by Seinfeld, Schneider whipped up a cucumber-vodka–based tipple. To prevent the cocktail from getting too sweet, he incorporates fresh citrus juice. “Grapefruit is one of my favorite things to use in cocktails because it has a slight bitterness that helps keep a cocktail from becoming too sweet,” he says, adding that the acid from lime juice also helps keep things balanced.

Tip: If you make the simple syrup ahead of time, it’ll keep nicely in the refrigerator for two or three weeks.

The Festivus

Serves 1


2 ounces cucumber-infused vodka

1/2 ounce rosemary simple syrup*

3/4 ounce fresh grapefruit juice

1/2 ounce fresh lime juice


Club soda

Garnishes: sliced grapefruit, sprigs of rosemary


1. Combine the vodka, simple syrup and grapefruit and lime juices in a cocktail shaker with a few large cubes of ice.

2. Shake until you can feel the container turn cold, about 10 seconds.

3. Add a dash of club soda to an ice-filled glass. Pour chilled drink into glass and garnish with a 1/2 slice of grapefruit and sprig of fresh rosemary.

* For simple syrup: In a small saucepan, boil 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water until the sugar dissolves, about 3 minutes. Add sprig of rosemary and stir for an additional minute before removing from heat to cool.

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