Local bartenders are slowly but surely falling for the changing of the season. Drink menus around town are starting to feature drinks that display autumnal colors and incorporate fall favorites like cinnamon, ciders and warm ingredients.
Here is a sampling of three comfort cocktails sure to keep you warm(er) at night.
War Mouth: Shady Grove
“I like this Doc Watson song called ‘Shady Grove,’ and it’s bluegrass, and I’ve always wanted to make a cocktail based on it,” said Amy Ivey, bartender. “I was messing around with different fall flavors for the new menu and we have in-house-made apple butter, so I put about a teaspoon and a half of that with some sorghum, an ounce of Applejack apple brandy, an ounce of Henry McKenna bourbon, and shake that all up and strain it into a glass, and top it off with some apple cider so it’s just full-on all apple. I was going for very fall.”
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The Whig: Seasonal Impatience
For just two weeks at a time, The Whig offers specialty drinks crafted either by owner Phillip Blair or by head bartender Will Green. Their menu currently features a “seasonal impatience” made with a chilled in-house spiced apple cider, orange zest, bourbon and garnished with a lime.
“This is a good one because a lot of time in the winter we do a spiced bourbon and cider, but we heat it, and this time of year it’s not cold enough yet,” said Steve Moore, bartender. “It’s very similar to the spiced cider we do in the winter, but it’s a cold drink.”
Goat’s: You’re Nerdy Hot
“A long time ago, a friend of mine asked me to name a drink after her, and I always called her ‘nerdy hot,’ ” said owner Olando Patterson. “It’s rich hot chocolate – made with cocoa powder, half and half and whole milk and sugar because ‘fat equals flavor’ – with Goldschläger and whipped cream-flavored vodka. I add whipped cream and a dusting of cinnamon and chocolate on top of it. The cinnamon in the hot chocolate is really good because it gives it a little spice to it. And then the whipped cream-flavored vodka makes it savory. It’s more of a dessert cocktail. Definitely an after-dinner drink. End-of-night nightcap.”