You haven't had warm apple cider like this before. It's festive and sweet, and the caramel and warm spices make it the perfect dessert cocktail for Thanksgiving, Christmas, or any winter gathering.
In a medium (3-quart) sauce pan, combine the sugar and 2 Tbs. water over medium heat. Whisk until dissolved, about 2 minutes. Increase heat to high, and cook, without stirring, until golden brown, about 6 minutes. Slowly whisk in the cider, (careful it will spatter and the caramel will seize but then smooth out). Add the cinnamon sticks and bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice.
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk the heavy cream until medium peaks form. Add 1/4 fl. oz. of the Drambuie and the confectioners’ sugar. Continue to whisk until well combined.
Add 3/4 fl. oz. of the vodka and 3/4 fl. oz. of the Drambuie into each of four 8 to 10 oz. mugs. Divide the hot cider between the mugs, and use the cinnamon sticks to stir. Leave the cinnamon sticks in the mugs and dollop with the whipped cream. Sprinkle with a pinch of nutmeg. Serve hot.