Bezel’s Clarified Peppermint Cocoa Cocktail Recipe

Bezel, a sophisticated watering hole in the heart of downtown Denver, is celebrating the season with a festive pop-up bar serving cold-weather cocktails, such as the Clarified Peppermint Cocoa. The concoction takes three days to make, so plan ahead to be sure it’s ready to fill the punch bowl at your annual holiday party.

Bezel Denver's general manager Ravin Buzzell.
Photo by Jake Holschuh.

“Growing up, I always loved drinking hot chocolate around the holidays. For Bezel’s pop-up holiday bar, I wanted to do an adult take on the classic.”—Ravin Buzzell, general manager, Bezel Denver

Bezel Peppermint Tea


2 cinnamon sticks
1 star anise
5 cardamom pods
5 all spice pods
3 whole cloves
1 whole nutmeg
3 oz. sugar
1 peel of whole orange plus juice
1 peel of whole lemon plus juice
1 peppermint tea bag
12 oz. water
1/8 tsp. peppermint extract


In a dry pan, roast all the spices then add to a container. Add sugar, citrus peels, citrus juice and peppermint extract. Steep one tea bag in 12 oz. of water, then add tea to spices in the container. Stir the batch, cover and store in a refrigerated overnight. In the morning, stir the batch and remove spices and peels.

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Cocoa Mixture


3 oz. cocoa powder
12 oz. whole milk
1 tbs. lemon juice
dash orange juice


Bring milk and cocoa powder to a steady boil. Remove from heat and add citrus juice before adding to the tea batch. Stir and let sit for 20 to 30 minutes. Strain through layered cheese cloth to remove curdled milk solids. Cover and store refrigerated and allow to settle.

Bezel Denver's Clarified Peppermint Cocoa cocktail.
Photo by Jake Holschuh.

Clarified Peppermint Cocoa

Yields 8 cocktails


8 oz. apple brandy
batch Bezel peppermint tea
batch cocoa mixture


Combine the batches of Bezel peppermint tea and cocoa mixture, then add 8 oz. of apple brandy. Pour into eight glasses. Serve in a rocks glass, poured over a single large ice cube.