As the temperatures drop and we settle in to the full-blown fall season so many love, we can’t help but daydream about fall flavors. Specifically, fall specialty cocktails.
Sure, we love pumpkin spice and everything that comes with it, but when it comes to cocktails, we’re all about certain cozy fall aromas, spices like cinnamon, fruit infusions like apples and pears — yep, we’re in love.
So, we’ve asked some of our favorite boozy brands, bartenders and hotspots to share some of their best fall cocktail recipes. Here’s what they had to share.
The Golden Fog
With warm notes from cognac and spiced pear liqueur, the Golden Fog is perfect for damp, Pacific Northwest cocktail hours, says bartender LaShann Ross of the All Water Seafood and Oyster Bar at Hotel 1000, LXR Hotels & Resorts, in Seattle.
.75 ounce Cognac
.75 ounce Ketel One Citroen Vodka
.5 ounce St. George Spiced Pear Liqueur
.5 ounce lemon juice
.5 ounce agave syrup
Steps: Shake all ingredients together and double strain into a martini glass. Garnish with the dehydrated citrus wheel.
At the ATRIO Wine Bar & Restaurant at Conrad New York Downtown, food and beverage manager Kristian Gjergji shares her favorite fall pick, The Bear. She explains, “The bourbon sets the stage for this fall cocktail bringing in warm palate pleasers; vanilla, caramel, maple, and brown sugar notes, offset by house bitters, leave you with a sweet spice on your palate.”
1 orange slice
4 brandy cherries Griottissimo
2 dash of aromatic bitters
.5 ounce of maple syrup
2.5 ounces of Maker’s Mark Bourbon
Steps: Add one orange slice and four bourbon cherries in to a glass. Add two dashes of aromatic bitters. Pour in .5 oz of maple syrup. Muddle all ingredients together. Add in ice. Pour 2.5 oz bourbon in to the glass. Stir, do not shake. Enjoy!
The Driftwood Maple Bourbon Sour
Love a good sour? Make it maple with the Driftwood Maple Bourbon Sour, served at the Tidewater Grill at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. Mixologist Steven Reyes shares his smooth, delicious recipe below.
1.5 ounce Woodford Reserve Bourbon
1 ounce rosemary-infused maple syrup
.75 ounce house-made Sour Mix
1 lemon and rosemary-infused ice sphere
Garnished with a lemon zest rim
Steps: Prepared desired glass with a lemon zest rim. Fill a shaker halfway with ice. Add in bourbon, rosemary maple syrup, and sour mix. Shake for thirty seconds and pour into prepared glasses. Add in 1 lemon and rosemary-infused ice sphere and enjoy!
The Royal Nettle
LaShann Ross shares another fall-infused option for all the tastes and scents of the season — The Royal Nettle. It combines memories of picking blackberries on the side of the trail in the forest with the warm tastes and scents of fall with spices and aromatic gin.
.5 ounce Empress 1908 Gin
.75 ounce lime juice
.75 ounce simple syrup
.25 ounce St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram
.5 ounce house-made spiced Blackberry Cordial
Steps: Shake everything but cordial. Strain over a large cube in a rocks glass. “Sink” cordial after. Garnish with fresh blackberry and a sprig of rosemary.
Sauvi B Ginger Spritzer
Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc is, of course, delicious on its own. But when you throw it into a cocktail, it can be even better. For a party, try making this Sauvi B Ginger Spritzer! It makes four cocktails and is deliciously refreshing and seasonal.
1 (2 inches) piece of freshly peeled, sliced ginger
2 mint sprigs, plus more for garnish
2 cups (16 ounces) Kim Crawford Illuminate Sauvignon Blanc
Juice of 2 limes (about 2 ounces or ¼ cup)
2 ounces simple syrup
1 can (12 ounces) club soda
Steps: Muddle the ginger and mint in a large cocktail shaker or jar. Add the Kim Crawford Illuminate Sauvignon Blanc, juice of 2 limes, and 2 ounces simple syrup, and fill the shaker with ice. Shake vigorously until the cocktail shaker is cold, 20 to 30 seconds. Strain into 4 ice-filled wine glasses. Top each glass off with club soda and garnish with a sprig of mint.
The Altitude Old Fashioned
Bartender Sean Palmer of Powder at the Waldorf Astoria Park City says his favorite fall cocktail has to be The Altitude Old Fashioned. “There’s no better time for whiskey than autumn!” he says, explaining, “we use locally-distilled High West Whiskey and lean into fall flavors with maple syrup aged in a bourbon barrel.” Here’s what goes into his favorite delicious drink.
1.5 ounce High West Double Rye
1 ounce High West American Prairie Bourbon
Maple Bourbon Syrup
Steps: Pour rye, bourbon, and maple bourbon syrup into your favorite shaker, half-filled with ice. Shake for several seconds. Pour into glass and garnish with a cherry and orange slice for a boost of fruity flavor.
The Before or After
Brandy, scotch and sherry? Oh, my! At the Estuary at Conrad Washington DC, Brennan Wold and Nial Haris-Garcia serve up their favorite fall cocktail they call the Before or After. They describe it as, “When an aperitif meets a digestif, you have the perfect transitional cocktail, just like the fall season easing you out of summer with bright sherry and into winter with an earth-forward scotch. It’s fantastic to sip on next to the fire for your first days of sweater weather.”
1 ounce Spanish brandy
1 ounce Highland Park 12 Yr Scotch
0.75 ounce Alvear Pedro Ximenez Solera 1927 Sherry
0.75 ounce Don Benigno Amontillado Sherry
2 drops of chocolate bitters
Garnish with a burnt orange peel.
Steps: Fill a shaker halfway with ice. Add in brandy, scotch, sherry, and two drops of chocolate bitters. Shake for several seconds and pour into desired glass. Garnish with a burnt or charred orange peel.
We only recommend products we have independently researched, tested, and loved. If you purchase a product found through our links, Sunday Edit may earn an affiliate commission.