Creative Cocktails Vol. 25 No. 10

Spiced Spirits for Autumn


With the end of October creeping up on us, we turn to spooky potions as well as drinks that evoke fall flavors – apple, ginger, cinnamon, cider, gingerbread and caramel. It’s sweater weather so grab your favorite cardigan and stay warm with a creepy cocktail either before or after trick-or-treating with the little goblins!

SPOOKY & SPICYcreated at Orchard Room by Beverage Director Curtis Bernadeau

Photo credit: Riccardo Piazza

Absente, made with wormwood, anise, mint, and spices, starts off sweet and leaves you with a taste of spice, giving it the perfect alcoholic take on trick or treat.

1 oz Absente Absinthe Refined 
1 oz lime 
.5 oz simple syrup
.5 oz pineapple juice
2 drops hellfire bitters 

Mix all ingredients and pour over ice in a rocks glass. Garnish with a slice of lime and jalapeño pepper.


Photo credit: NOLET’S Gin

Cocktail for one:
2.5 oz NOLET’S Silver Gin
1.5 oz Apple Juice
1/2 oz Lime Juice
1/2 oz Honey
Apples (Green & Red), Cinnamon Sticks, Thyme and Citrus for Garnish

Cocktail for a group:
26 oz NOLET’S Silver Gin
13 oz Apple Juice or Cider
6.5 oz Lime Juice
6.5 oz Honey
2 Fresh Limes
Apples (Green & Red), Cinnamon Sticks, Thyme and Citrus for Garnish

Mix all ingredients in an infusion jar (or punch bowl) and stir thoroughly to dissolve honey. Slice limes into wheels and add to mixture. Serve over ice, garnished with lime, apple slices or matchsticks, cinnamon sticks, and/or thyme.

GINGER ROGERSserved at StripSteak by Michael Mina

2 oz Grey Goose Pear Vodka (grated ginger infused for spice)
½ oz Domaine duCanton Ginger Liqueur 
½ oz Pear Puree 
¼ oz Club Soda 
Gingerbread Cookie Crumbs

Combine all ingredients in a shaker and stir. Pour over the rocks in a Riedel High Ball rimmed with gingerbread cookie crumbs. 

 BOURBON APPLE CIDERserved at Pizza & Burger by Michael Mina

1 ½ oz Four Roses Bourbon
½ oz Lime Juice
1 oz Caramel Apple Butter 
4 oz Sparkling Apple Cider

Mix all ingredients in shaker and stir. Pour over ice and garnish with caramelized apple slices and cinnamon sticks. 

SWEATA WEATHAserved at L.A. Jackson

1.5 oz Buffalo Trace Bourbon
0.5 oz Amontillado Sherry 
2 oz Apple Juice 
0.5 oz Lemon Juice 
0.75 oz Cinnamon Syrup*

Pour all contents into a shaker with ice; shake, strain into a snifter glass over crushed ice and top with a mint bouquet or dried apple. 

*To Make Cinnamon Syrup: Place 4 cinnamon sticks into a pot with two cups of water and bring to a boil. Once boiling, remove the cinnamon sticks and add 2 cups of sugar. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Let cool before placing in a cocktail. 

APPLE OF MY EYEserved at Bleau Bar

1 oz Bulleit Rye Bourbon 
1 oz Remy VSOP Cognac 
1 oz Apple Juice
¾ oz Lemon 
¼ oz Agave 
¼ oz Ginger Puree
4 Dashes Angostura 

Combine all ingredients into a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a Collins glass. Garnish with a sprig of mint. 

Feature image by Riccardo Piazza

Depending on where you reside, the autumn leaves may be showing full color, some color or none yet at all. We don’t have an “in” with Mother Nature to shower your world with brilliant hues but we can serve up some cocktail recipes that offer vibrance for both your eyes and palate. Enjoy!

SPICED PEACH MARTINIcreated by cocktail blogger Arika Jeter

Photo credit: Arika Jeter

2 oz @alizeincolor Peach liqueur 
1/2 oz of allspice dram
2 oz of bourbon
3/4 oz lemon juice 

Add the ingredients to a shaker with plenty of ice, shake well, & strain into a chilled martini glass.

GENTLEMEN’S DATEcreated by Yoon

Photo credit: Yoon NYC

2 oz Bulleit Rye Whiskey
0.5 oz Jujube syrup
4 dashes orange bitters 
Pinch of cinnamon

In a snifter glass, combine Bulleit, jujube syrup, orange bitters and cinnamon. Add ice and stir. To garnish, add a torched orange peel and a date.  


Photo credit: NEFT Vodka

1.75 oz NEFT ultra premium vodka
.75 coffee liqueur 
.75 pumpkin spiced cream

Combine all ingredients in a mason jar and stir lightly. Garnish with pumpkin spiced biscotti and dash of cinnamon.

AUTOMNEcreated by Jay & Leah Hall

Photo credit: Delamain Cognac

1.75 oz Delamain Cognac Pale & Dry X.O
.50 oz spiced pear liqueur
.25 oz cinnamon simple syrup
.25 oz fig balsamic
.50 oz lemon juice
dash of saline

Shake with ice, strain into coupe. Garnish with lemon peel or cinnamon stick if desired.


Photo credit: Select Aperitivo

1 oz Select Aperitivo
1 oz Sweet Vermouth
1 oz Bourbon

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass, add ice and stir for 30 seconds. Strain into a glass over ice and garnish with an orange peel.

VANTAGE POINTcreated by Salcombe Distilling Co.

2 parts (50ml) ‘New London Light’ non-alcoholic spirit
2 parts (50ml) Coffee (cold brew, decaffeinated or fresh)
1/2 part (12.5ml) Agave syrup

Place all the ingredients in a Boston shaker with plenty of ice. Shake for 15 seconds and strain into a tumbler over a large ice cube. Garnish with a twist of orange peel.

Although somewhat balmy temperatures are still present in many locales worldwide, according to the calendar Autumn has officially arrived. That means it’s time to swap out cooling libations for warming drinks to enjoy after a day of fall hiking, apple picking, football watching or leaf raking. We’ve got some recipes in honor of International Coffee Day (October 1, 2021) and some others to keep your spirits up as the temperatures begin to drop.


Photo credit: Mad March hare Irish Poitín

3 oz cold brew coffee
2 oz Mad March Hare Irish Poitín
1 oz demerara syrup
Hand whipped heavy cream

Prepare the cold brew coffee. Stir ingredients in a mixing glass over ice. Strain into a chilled footed glass. Top with whipped cream. Garnish with nutmeg.


Photo credit: NOLET Distillery

1.5 oz. NOLET’S Silver Gin
Persimmon Slices
Cinnamon Sticks
Fresh Thyme Sprigs

Pour NOLET’S Silver over ice, top with soda water and garnish with persimmon slices, cinnamon sticks and thyme sprigs.


Photo credit: iichiko Shochu

1.5 oz iichiko Saiten
1.5 oz Red Wine
1 oz Orange Juice
1 oz Pineapple Juice
0.5 oz Simple Syrup
Muddled Berries

There are two ways to make this cocktail: Batch the Sangria with whole fruits and pour over Ice, or mix all ingredients in a shaker, add berries, shake, then strain over Ice.


Photo credit: Caitlin Minton

1.5 oz Rhum Barbancourt 3 Star
1 oz fresh brewed espresso
.25 oz vanilla simple syrup
1 oz Mr Black coffee liqueur
.5 oz full-fat oatly oat milk

Mix all ingredients and top with *café batido foam & chocolate covered espresso beans. *To make the foam: mix 2 tbsp café batido instant coffee with 2 tbsp water & 1 tbsp vanilla simple syrup and blend until thick.

FRESH MONKEYBy Stéphane Ginouvès, Hotel Barriere Le Fouquet’s Paris

Photo credit: Le Fouquet’s

1.5 oz Monkey 47 Gin 
.5 oz apple syrup 
.75 oz lemon juice 
.75 oz egg white
.75 oz Ginger Beer 

Add all ingredients to shaker. Shake and strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with a small sprig of rosemary and flower petals. 


Photo credit: Egan’s Irish Whiskey

3.5 oz. freshly brewed coffee
1.5 oz. Egan’s Vintage Grain
1 oz. demerara syrup
Hand whipped heavy cream
Nutmeg on top

Stir ingredients into a warmed footed glass. Top with whipped cream and garnish with nutmeg.

Featured image by NOLET’S Gin

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