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10 Shots to Rein in the Year of the Horse

I love trying new cocktails and wanted to share my experiences with you!

Kick off the Year of the Horse with these tasty drinks!

Kick off the Year of the Horse with these tasty drinks!

If you're anything like me, and you love a good reason to try out new alcoholic concoctions, then you've come to the right place! During my college years (many more than I care to admit), I've had the opportunity to hang out with some great people and share in some fun times over a delicious ethanol (abbreviated EtOH) containing beverage (or five).

Much to my roommate's dismay, I would utilize nearly one-quarter of the fridge for my grandiose collection of various liqueurs, with hard liquors (>30% EtOH) being stored in the freezer. This motivated me to transfer/consolidate all of my alcohol from their wonky-shaped, glass bottles into 750 ml tall, flat plastic bottles (which I had to slowly acquire over time from the few types of liquor/liqueur that were sold in such bottles). By doing so, I was able to fit almost twice as much alcohol in the fridge as would normally be possible, without worrying about clanging the bottles together and breaking them. Even if you only own a handful of different kinds of liquor/liqueur, you could always use more shelf space! Of course, the more types of alcohol you have on hand, the greater your options are for making special drinks!

That's where this article comes into play. I'd like to share with you some of my shot/drink recipes to help you usher in the Year of the Horse. You can think of these as 10 different ways to celebrate New Year's, tools for celebrating St. Patrick's Day (since a few are green), or for whenever it's "shot-o-clock."

When Is the Year of the Horse?

The Chinese Zodiac runs on a 12-year cycle, and each year is represented by a different animal. The last Year of the Horse occurred in 2014, and the next one is due in 2026.

The Chinese Zodiac also incorporates five elements (or planets; also called the Heavenly Stems). These elements are wood, fire, earth, metal, and water.

To complicate things further, every year also alternates between Yin and Yang forms, making every animal associated with a single form and each element with both forms. The horse sign is always partnered with Yang (which translates to mean "sun" or "light").

Whether you are using a bar shot glass (1 oz), a standard shot glass (1.5 oz), or an oversized shot glass (2.5 oz), you can readily prepare these recipes right in the shot glass without needing a shaker!

Whether you are using a bar shot glass (1 oz), a standard shot glass (1.5 oz), or an oversized shot glass (2.5 oz), you can readily prepare these recipes right in the shot glass without needing a shaker!

Shot/Drink Recipes

This is the part where I go about imparting my drink knowledge to you. Some of these concoctions were developed with the grateful assistance of other awesome people in my life, and their names are mentioned accordingly. Please remember that these are not, by any means, exact recipes and I highly encourage you to "play around" with the types of materials used (whether they are name brand or off-brand, etc.) and their shot proportions (presented in fractions) in order to achieve your desired taste/result.

Even though these recipes were designed from a 1.5 oz (typical shot glass) perspective, they can easily be scaled to match any-sized shot (from 1 oz bar shots to 2.5 oz shooters). Proportions of each shot component are indicated in fractions. For those who wish to "sip" on such concoctions, I have provided suggestions for "scaling-up" the shots to the size of a full glass using brackets to indicate how many shots [#sh] or to fill the remaining space in the glass [fill]. Drinks without a [fill] option are presumed to be enjoyed on the rocks. I have also indicated (in parentheses) the percent alcohol of every ingredient and the shot, overall. The estimated calories in every bar-sized shot (1 oz) is also presented.

Note: Although the order these ingredients are added is moderately important (for ease of drinking/mixing and proper proportions), all components (unless indicated otherwise) are designed to be mixed (added to the shot glass with force or made in a shaker) instead of layered.

The Side-Saddle Sour shot (~14% EtOH).

The Side-Saddle Sour shot (~14% EtOH).

Side-Saddle Sour

A simple twist on a common favorite, the Amaretto Sour, resulting in a shot that is dark green and contains ~14% alcohol.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 [1.5] Island Punch Pucker (15%)
  • 1/3 [1.5] Amaretto (28%)
  • 1/3 [fill] Sweet and Sour Mix (0%)

Calories: 71

Red Caramel Apple

Horses love apples, don't they? This shot, although not pictured, is sure to please any apple fan and is brown with ~11% alcohol.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 [1] Buttershots (15%)
  • 1/2 [2] Sour Apple Pucker (15%)
  • 1/4 [fill] Cranberry Juice (0%)

Calories: 58

The Azure Dragon shot (~18% EtOH).

The Azure Dragon shot (~18% EtOH).

Azure Dragon

Feel the cool breeze of this dragon as it courses its way down your throat! This shot, while being light blue with ~18% alcohol, is easily scalable to a full-sized drink.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 [1.5] Vodka (40%)
  • 1/3 [1.5] Island Punch Pucker (15%)
  • 1/3 [fill] Sprite (0%)

Calories: 51

Chocolate Stallion

What better way is there to wind down after a long day of riding than to sit down and enjoy a smooth shot? This shot, although not pictured, looks a little like Toby (shown below) and contains ~21% alcohol. Recipe contributors: Kris M., Keaton N., and Pehrie N.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 [1] Amaretto (28%)
  • 1/2 [2] Kahlua (27%)
  • 1/4 [fill] Heavy Whipping Cream (0%)

Calories: 69

The Pudding Shot (~15% EtOH).

The Pudding Shot (~15% EtOH).

Pudding Shot

Who doesn't like pudding? Honestly?! This tan shot can also resemble Toby and contains ~15% alcohol.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 [1] Dark Creme de Cacao (25%)
  • 1/2 [2] Irish Cream (17%)
  • 1/4 [fill] Heavy Whipping Cream (0%)

Calories: 98

The Jupiter Java shot (~21% EtOH).

The Jupiter Java shot (~21% EtOH).

Jupiter Java

Bring the largest planet in the solar system straight to your mouth with this recipe. This shot is light brown with ~21% alcohol. Recipe contributors: Will F. and Rodrigo M.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 [1] Kahlua (27%)
  • 1/2 [2] Irish Cream (17%)
  • 1/4 [1] Midori (23%)

Calories: 92

Ye Olde Red Hot

Remember those cute little red candies that are a combination of sweet, spicy, and cherry? Yeah, this is them in liquid form. This shot, although not pictured, is red/brown with ~16% alcohol. Recipe contributors: Uriah D., Sam C., and Rodrigo M.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 [1] Grenadine (0%)
  • 1/4 [1] Spiced Rum (35%)
  • 1/2 [2] Hot Damn (15%)

Calories: 72

The Toxic Breath shot (~21% EtOH).

The Toxic Breath shot (~21% EtOH).

Toxic Breath

The spice really takes a ride on the fruitiness of this recipe and stops off at the back of your mouth to flavor your every exhale. This shot is light green with ~21% alcohol. Recipe contributor: Hunter G.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 [1] Island Punch Pucker (15%)
  • 1/2 [2] Spiced Rum (35%)
  • 1/4 [fill] Sprite (0%)

Calories: 55

The Campfire Starter shot (~18% EtOH), before and after being lit on fire.

The Campfire Starter shot (~18% EtOH), before and after being lit on fire.

Campfire Starter

Flash back to the days of sitting on a folding chair around a log fire in the middle of nowhere with this brown shot containing ~18% alcohol.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 [2] Tuscan Lemonade (15%)
  • 1/3 [1] Vodka (40%)
  • 1/3 [fill] Dr. Pepper (0%)

Instructions

  1. Top with a dusting of cinnamon
  2. Lightly apply a few drops of Bacardi 151 Rum to the cinnamon so that it soaks into it, but doesn't sink far into the shot
  3. Carefully light the shot on fire.

Preparation Tips

  • Use only a light-moderate amount of cinnamon (see photo above).
  • Pour a little 151 into a different shot glass, place a straw straight down into the shot glass, securely place your finger over the top end of the straw in order to create a seal, and then lift the straw to transport a small volume of 151 directly/gently onto the cinnamon covering the top of the Campfire Starter shot.
  • Be sure the fire goes out before drinking.

Calories: 41

Breach & Clear

This gold-colored shot, although not pictured, is a direct result of playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and contains 40% alcohol. Sam C. and Rodrigo M. kindly contributed to this recipe by staying up late to help me beat the "Breach and Clear" cooperative mission on the hardest difficulty.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 [1] Dry Gin (40%)
  • 1/3 [1] Vodka (40%)
  • 1/3 [1] Gold Tequila (40%)

Calories: 69

Summary: 10 Shots for the Year of the Horse

Recipe%EtOHCalories

Side-Saddle Sour

14

71

Red Caramel Apple

11

58

Azure Dragon

18

51

Chocolate Stallion

21

69

Pudding Shot

15

98

Jupiter Java

21

92

Ye Olde Red Hot

16

72

Toxic Breath

21

55

Campfire Starter

18

41

Breach & Clear

40

69

Please Comment!

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I wholly believe feedback can be a useful tool for helping make the world a better place, so I welcome any (positive or negative) that you might feel compelled to offer. But, before actually leaving feedback, please consider the following two points: 1. Please mention in your positive comments what you thought was done well, and mention in your negative comments how the article can be altered to better suit your needs/expectations; 2. If you believe that any of the information contained in this article is lacking sufficient detail or is incorrect, then please leave a detailed comment addressing the issue and citing your sources (if applicable).

Thank you for reading! Please drink responsibly.

Alcohol Consolidation

Since most of the liquor/liqueur bottles you buy from the store are awkwardly shaped and made of fragile glass, you may wish to transfer their contents into 750 ml tall, flat plastic bottles (which some alcohols are sold in) for greater efficiency.

Since most of the liquor/liqueur bottles you buy from the store are awkwardly shaped and made of fragile glass, you may wish to transfer their contents into 750 ml tall, flat plastic bottles (which some alcohols are sold in) for greater efficiency.

By laying out 750 ml bottles purchased from the store on a green mat, you can see how it only fits 13 different types of alcohol, compared to 24 types when transferred into the tall, flat, plastic 750 ml bottles.

By laying out 750 ml bottles purchased from the store on a green mat, you can see how it only fits 13 different types of alcohol, compared to 24 types when transferred into the tall, flat, plastic 750 ml bottles.

My mother's Paint Horse, Toby.

My mother's Paint Horse, Toby.

© 2013 Christopher Rex

Comments

Storm on December 29, 2014:

Hey, that's a clever way of thinikng about it.

Christopher Rex (author) from Durham, NC on January 01, 2014:

Hehe, thanks Insane Mundane! It's good to hear from you again. Most beer tastes like piss to me, which is why I've chosen to specialize in these kinds of drinks, heh. I hope you had fun for New Year's! Take care!

Insane Mundane from Earth on December 31, 2013:

Excellent Hub! When I first started reading this, I thought to myself, "a lot of people reading this probably don't realize the difference between liquor and liqueur," but I like them both and realize the difference albeit I still like my beer the best; ha! Happy New Year's Day! Cheers!