These Are the Best Spirits and Cocktails to Try This Fall
When there’s a chill in the air and the leaves start turning colors, it’s time change your cocktail choices along with your wardrobe. Luckily, creative beverage producers are here to help with delicious spirits and ready-to-drink cocktails. We’ve tried them (yes, hard work, but someone has to do it) and come up with a list of new spirits and cocktails to try this fall.
Wheyward Spirit is a clear, 80-proof spirit made by distilling whey, an abundant by-product of cheese production. The flavor is subtle with notes of vanilla cream, pear, and oak with a smooth finish, making it suitable to sip straight or replace vodka, gin, or rum in a cocktail. The “farm-to-flask” spirit, sporting a wind-blown cow on its label, repurposes whey — a plus for both farmers and the environment.
Monkey 47 Gin
Monkey 47 Gin is distilled in Germany’s Black Forest and incorporates 47 botanicals that include pine, lavender, almond, coriander, lemon verbena, ginger, nutmeg, lingonberries, and more, creating a complex flavor that’s been described as herbal, earthy, floral, woody, and spicy. The 47 also refers to its 47% ABV, ideal for cocktails like the traditional gin and tonic or martini.
Whiskey Del Bac
Whiskey Del Bac is an American single malt distilled in Tucson, Arizona. Using the Scottish whiskey-making process as a model, the distillery smokes their barley over a fire of local mesquite wood instead of peat as is done in Scotland. They produce four whiskeys, with flavor notes ranging from toffee, caramel, and oak to white chocolate.
Toast Vodka is a product of Miami-based, Black-owned Toast Distillers, Inc. The 100% corn-based vodka is unflavored, made with coconut water, gluten-free, and non-GMO. The smooth, tasty alcohol was created to be enjoyed neat, chilled, and in basic or craft cocktails.
El Tequileño began producing tequilas in 1959 and continues to do so today, thanks to the third generation of the Salles family. It offers five award-winning tequilas. What’s new for El Tequileño is its recently opened hotel, Casa Salles, a boutique property located adjacent to its working distillery in the town of Tequila, Mexico.
Muckety-Muck, a 24-year-old single-grain Scotch whiskey from Orphan Barrel Whiskey Distilling Co., features a label with a picture of the prized pig of the same name — one of hundreds fed by the staff at the "ghost" distillery of Port Dundas, once one of Scotland’s most respected distilleries.
Catan Pisco, founded by Catalina Gaete with the hope of bringing her country’s classic beverage to a wider audience, is a distilled grape-based spirit made with organic handpicked grapes from vineyards in Ovalle, Chile. Most often used in a pisco sour cocktail, its flavor has been described as fruit-forward or citrusy.
Hardscoop is ice cream with an ABV between 8% and 10.5%. It’s crafted with premium ingredients and available in a variety of flavors, including vanilla, chocolate, butterscotch, coffee, and seasonal pumpkin spice. Made in Charleston, South Carolina, it will soon be available for online ordering.
Crafthouse Cocktails is a line of ready-to-drink concoctions created by world-renowned bartender Charles Joly, the official mixologist for the Oscars and Emmys, and renowned Chicago restaurateur Matt Lindner. These beverages are made with small-batch craft spirits and all-natural, gluten-free ingredients. In recyclable glass bottles and aluminum cans, seven choices are available.
Makku, available in three flavors (original, blueberry, and mango), is a frothy beverage that has been enjoyed in Korea as makgeolli for hundreds of years. It’s brewed from fermented rice, live cultures, and water, then lightly filtered. The sweet and milky drink contains about 6% alcohol.
Tag + Jug Cider Co.
Tag + Jug Cider Co. is a unique line of ciders made from apples sustainably grown in California’s Sierra foothills. The beverages are fermented and aged in old French oak barrels, like fine wines. In fact, several of their ciders are blended with wines from their Conduit and Divergent Vine labels.
Fall Cocktail Recipes
La Mucca Negroni (A Twist on the Popular Campari Cocktail)
Sun in Sagittarius (Warm and Perfect for Fall)
La Batanga (Created by Don Javier of La Capilla)
- 1 lime
- Shot of El Tequileño Blanco
Directions: Coat the rim of a tall glass with juice of half a lime and salt. Add a generous shot of tequila, and top with Coca-Cola. Stir with a big knife, per Don Javier’s tradition.
Kor-Chata (A Cinnamon-flavored drink Combining Korean and Mexican Ingredients)
- 4 oz. Makku original
- 1 oz. horchata syrup
- Pine nuts for garnish (optional)
Directions: To make horchata syrup, combine 1 cup unsweetened soy milk, 8 cinnamon sticks, and ½ cup sugar. Simmer and cool.
Autumn in Amatitán (Created by Código Mixologist Collin DeLaval)
Directions: Combine tequila, apple cider, lemon juice in a shaker. Strain into a flute, and top with rose.