We lit our first fire of the season the other night, and to celebrate, Jeffrey made a seasonal cocktail he’s calling, The Big Apple. To get inspired, he referenced our Cocktail Codex book, a favorite guide for the libation enthusiast. Starting with the classic Sidecar recipe, Jeffrey used an apple brandy, homemade orange and fig blend, and a pinch of cinnamon for a yummy fall take on the old classic…
One of our favorite features of Cocktail Codex is its comprehensive look into the fundamentals of cocktails. This book claims that there are only six kinds of cocktails from which all other cocktails have evolved, and then breaks them down into their “root recipes.” Each recipe can then be used as a template to make ingredient substitutions and variations to suit your preference and the season. It encourages you to experiment and create your own cocktail, which Jeffrey did with The Big Apple.
Starting with the classic Sidecar recipe, Jeffrey switched out the Cognac for Laird’s Straight Apple Brandy, the Cointreau for Drambuie and instead of lemon juice he used a homemade blend of figs and freshly squeezed orange juice. To garnish, he added an orange twist and a pinch of cinnamon. The result was a warm, savory, sweet variation that's perfect for cooler fall evenings. We served it up in our new handmade crystal whiskey glasses. The rounded bottoms create a weighty, yet elegant feel in your hand, as if they were made for sipping by the fire.
The Big Apple
1.5 oz Laird’s Straight Apple Brandy
1 oz Drambuie
1 tbsp fig orange blend (see note)
Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and shake. Pour into a glass and garnish with an orange twist and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
Note: To make the fig orange blend, peel a handful of whole figs and add them to a blender or food processor. Add just enough freshly squeezed orange juice to create a smooth texture. One fig yields about one tablespoon, good for one cocktail, but I like to make a batch to save in the fridge.
To help us ease into cocktail hour, I lit a few of my favorite decorative candles (see here, here and here) and layered these floor cushions by the fireplace for some easy lounging. Sipping on a cocktail by the fire is one of my favorite ways to celebrate the fall season. What are some of your fall traditions?