As the rest of the country settles into autumn, I find myself sidelined from the festivities. If I was born and bred in LA, I might not know what I was missing–after all PSLs are sold everywhere and there are dead leaves to be found with a trek to Griffith Park. As an LA transplant what I find myself missing most(aside from well-mannered people) are the seasons. Not only do I miss the weather, the whisps of crisp cold air that can be wrinkled out of my nose with a warm cider, but the smells, the sounds, and the sights of this wondrous time of year.
One of my favorite autumn traditions when visiting my relatives in Michigan, was a trip to the cider mill. Standing in line surrounded by the smells of apple juice freshly crushed from ripe fruit permeated the wood building. There was always a little paper sack of warm cake donuts to enjoy as a contrast to the tart cider.
I created this fall cocktail as a festive reminder of this memorable place. Sure, some of the ingredients will take a little trip to your favorite liquor store to hunt down. Laird’s Bonded is such a versatile spirit that it deserves a spot in your collection, especially during this time of year. Sortilège comes in half bottles and pairs so well with whiskey or over ice cream that you’ll have no problem finding other uses for it. Allspice dram is a staple in many tiki drinks, so do yourself a favor and pick up a small bottle of it and it’ll last you a good while.
I hope you have fun making this cocktail. This is what autumn tastes like.
The Cider Mill
by Laura Lindsay, Providence Restaurant, 2011
2 oz Laird’s Bonded Applejack
1 oz Sortilège Canadian Whisky & Maple Syrup
1 barspoon St.Elizabeth Allspice Dram(Japanese barspoon, not the big American style ones!)
.75 oz vanilla syrup(see recipe below)
.75 oz freshly squeezed lemon
2 dashes Angostura Bitters
Method: Shake briskly for about 5-7 seconds and strain over ice
Garnish: Freshly grated cinnamon. Donuts optional, but encouraged.
Additional Notes: You can also substitute Sapling Maple Liqueur here for the Sortilége, but increase the lemon juice to 1 oz to compensate for the sweetness.