Thanksgiving-inspired Cocktails and Appetizers

‘Tis the season for gratitude! Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and we’ve been thinking about all the things we’re thankful for at the Horton Hotel & Rooftop Lounge. Truth be told, there’s a lot to be grateful for, but we’re most thankful for our dedicated team. Where would we be without one another?! From a construction crew that’s worked tirelessly since day one, to directors and owners who’ve spent many long evenings in the office, we’re so grateful for all of the love that’s been poured into this project. We look forward to being open next year throughout the holiday season.

For many of us, Thanksgiving means gathering with family and friends, feasting on turkey and pumpkin pie, watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and lots of football. There’s no denying that things can get a little hectic this time of year as many of us feel pressured to create the perfect experience. To help make things a little easier on you, we sat down with our Director of Food & Beverage, Hunter, and asked him to share a few simple, seasonal recipes. Whether you’re planning on hosting lots of family, or having an intimate gathering with a few of your closest friends, these simple Thanksgiving-inspired cocktails and appetizers can be made quickly and are sure to please.

A taste of autumn: cocktails

Now that summer has passed, it’s time to enjoy the flavors of autumn. These three simple cocktails balance spiced, warming flavors with the subtle sweetness of fall fruits. They’re perfect for entertaining over the Thanksgiving holiday.

Caramel Apple Mule

1.5 oz bourbon

.5 oz apple brandy

.5 oz caramel syrup

3 dashes ginger bitters

3 oz unfiltered apple cider

Shake on ice, and serve over crushed ice. Garnish with a whole cinnamon stick and apple slice.

Muscadine Mezcal

1 oz mezcal

1 oz sherry

.5 oz lemon juice

3 oz mulled muscadine wine (mulled with cinnamon stick, star anise, and clove)

Shake on ice. Serve up with a lemon twist.


Bartlett Pear Sour

2 oz pear brandy

1 oz rye whiskey

1 oz pear nectar

.5 oz ginger syrup

1 oz lemon juice

1 egg white

Dry shake the egg white. Then add remaining ingredients, and shake again with ice. Serve up with a pear slice.



The perfect bite: Thanksgiving-inspired appetizers

It seems like everyone’s always in the mood for snacking during the Thanksgiving holiday, so we compiled three quick and easy recipes that you can throw together in no time. With each of these recipes there’s plenty of room for creativity, therefore our Director of Food & Beverage encourages you to experiment and really make them your own.


Gorilla Bread

Package of frozen yeast roll dough

1 lb swiss cheese & 1lb of deli ham (cut into small pieces)

Stick of butter

1 T Worcestershire sauce

1 t garlic powder & 1 t onion powder

1/2 T salt

Melt the butter with the Worcestershire sauce, garlic, onion, and salt.

In a buttered bundt or cake pan layer up all the ingredients. Start with the frozen yeast rolls, followed by the butter mixture, followed by cheese and ham. Layer to the top of the dish until all the ingredients are in the pan, making sure to end with cheese and ham.

Cover with plastic wrap and allow to sit at room temperature for 6 hours or overnight.  

Bake in a 350 degree oven for 35 minutes, or until an thermometer reads 180 degrees in the center, then allow to cool slightly before serving.


Brie and Cranberry Crostini

Stick Boy baguette (sliced)

Brie cheese

Cranberry sauce

Pecans (chopped)

Place the pecans on a baking sheet, and toast at 350 degrees in just a small amount of butter. You’ll know they’re done when they become aromatic, which takes about 5 minutes. Put them aside to cool. 

Toast the slices of baguette until just crunchy on the edges.

Top the toasted baguette with a slice of brie cheese, the cranberry sauce of your choice, and the toasted pecans.


Homemade Chex Mix




Bagel Chips


Seasonings (Worcestershire, garlic, salt, and pepper are classic)

Pre-heat oven to 250 degrees. Combine first four ingredients in a large bowl.

In a separate bowl, melt the butter then stir in seasonings.

Pour the melted butter mixture over everything in the large bowl. Give it a good stir, and make sure everything is evenly coated. Spread on a baking sheet and bake for about an hour. Stir every 15-20 minutes.

Hunter says: “This is a simple classic, and you’re limited only by your imagination. Rather than taking the “easy way out” with prepackaged snacks, make one of hundreds of variations of this classic snack to have around for the holidays. Feel free to experiment with different spice combinations. Growing up, my family always had some variation of homemade Chex Mix around during the holidays.” 

Bon Appetit!

We hope you enjoyed these simple Thanksgiving-inspired cocktails and appetizers. If you decide to whip up one of these recipes, share a picture on Facebook or Instagram and tag us. We’d love to see your creations.

And don’t forget: we are planning on being open through the holidays next year, and are accepting reservations for 2019! If you’ve got friends and family that need a place to stay, check our availability. Make sure to sign up for our email list too, because we’ll have some exclusive holiday specials coming your way. 

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