Le gateau des Rois, 1774
Eating King Cake
Twelfth Night is a festival in some branches of Christianity marking the coming of the Epiphany and concluding the Twelve Days of Christmas. Is it the end of Christmastide? In most places it WAS, and it was also an important turning point in the calendar, marking the end of the old year and the beginning of the new one.
The punch called wassail is consumed especially on Twelfth Night, but also throughout Christmas time, especially in the UK. Around the world, special pastries, such as the tortell and king cake are baked on Twelfth Night, and eaten the following day for the Feast of the Epiphany celebrations. Read about some of the traditions here, here, here and here.