This New Year’s Eve, celebrate in style with themed cocktails based on some of 2011′s most memorable pop-culture moments. Whether you’re hankering for a non-alcoholic (and Lohan-friendly) sipper, a Potter-inspired potion, a tipple as tart as Katniss Everdeen, or something that’s just bloody good (vampires what?), we’ve got you covered. Pop the cork on our cultural concoctions below!
If you’re the designated driver tonight, there are plenty of options. Celebrate Beyoncé releasing the eighth-biggest selling album of the year with two cans of 4 Loko. The energy drink’s controversial mixture has been toned down considerably since last year, though we might not necessarily recommend it for expectant mothers. Though Lindsey Lohan would probably prefer a Midnight cocktail (composed of Goldschläger and Dom Perignon, the favorite champagne of her icon Marilyn Monroe) or even a corpse reviver, we’re going to suggest healthful green juice, a zesty combo of fruits and leafy greens that will have her (and you) energized for all your 2012 appointments, from court dates to morgue duty. If your sensibilities are more Rebecca Black, try a virgin version of the Black “Friday” cocktail, to get your sugar rush on for an all-night dance party. There’s a crime scene on the dance floor, and you’re the only one who can solve it!
For those of you who are imbibing, why not start the evening off with a bang, by planning an Andy Rooney Power Hour — one shot of beer (or Metamucil, if you like) for each one-minute snippet of Andy Rooney’s 60 best commentaries from 60 Minutes. Of course, you’ll need to end with his final segment — feel free to let that one play to the end. Take a double shot if you can actually find a clip in which Rooney tells someone to get off his lawn.
In celebration of William and Kate’s April 29 nuptials, have a Kir Royal Wedding followed by a chaser of 72-proof crème de menthe (one proof for each day of Kim Kardashian’s chilly wedding to Kris Humphries).
Ryan Gosling has been the subject of countless memes this year, so why not a cocktail, too? We suggest a Drive daiquiri composed of (what else?) Goslings Rum, lime juice, and sugar. For extra eye appeal, throw in some strawberry puree to match the hot pink color of that so-retro-it’s-cool movie poster.
Though the late, great Steve Jobs wasn’t much of a drinker, you can certainly raise a glass to his legacy with an Applelicious Macintosh martini. Instead of using Crown Royal, try St. George American Single Malt Whiskey, made just 32 miles from Jobs’ home in Palo Alto, Calif. It’ll spice up the blend to make it much more manly than the ones drunk by that other Internet billionaire Walden Schmidt on Two and a Half Men.
Between the first glimpses of Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games (which remained on the top-selling books list yet again), Kate Winslet’s braless bravery during a conflagration on NekkidNecker Island, the hot-hot-hot third single from Willow Smith, and another release in George R.R. Martin’s Song of Fire and Ice series, it’s been a fiery year indeed. Celebrate with a smoky mezcal concoction. The spirit works best with citrus like blood orange (tart like Katniss) or ginger beer that’s got a little kick like Smith.
Speaking of huge years and gingers, let’s just name a few of the redheads who killed it this year: Emma Stone, Prince Harry, Adele, Melissa McCarthy, Rupert Grint, the late great Lucille Ball (who would have been 100 this year), Princess Beatrice (that hat!), Kathy Griffin and her giggling former-redhead-turned-silver-fox New Year’s Eve co-host Anderson Cooper, Little Mermaid Ariel, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Alyson Hannigan, hyperthymesiac Unforgettable consultant Marilu Henner (and her onscreen proxy Poppy Montgomery), Carol Burnett, and of course, Chuck Norris (then again, every year is a huge year for Chuck Norris). Have a champagne ginger cocktail to celebrate their effervescence and class.
NEXT: Thought you were done? You’ve still got the spirit(s) of zodiac, The Walking Dead, vampires, and Honey Badger to consider