If you feel like turning to brown spirits as the weather begins to chill, don't forget about aged tequilas and rums. These richer styles of our summer standards can be just the thing to warm the soul (and belly) when you've gotten a little bored with your regular fall tipples.
This drink from Chris Hannah of French 75 Bar in New Orleans brings together reposado tequila with bittersweet Aperol and herbal Fernet, plus Dubonnet Rouge (a wine-based aperitif made with herbs, spices, and quinine) for a result that's potent and luscious, with hints of sweet orange and cinnamony spice, plus a little menthol to keep things interesting.
All the King's Men
Rich ruby port and reposado tequila are mixed with chocolatey Averna amaro in this drink, which is sweetened with honey and topped off with fizzy ginger beer. This is a wonderfully autumnal long drink; like a spin on sangria without all the fruit.
French apple brandy is spiced up with falernum and Ron Zacapa Guatemalan rum in this cocktail from the bar at Sepia in Chicago. Think of it as a sneaky tiki drink for fall, when you're not quite ready to drink hot cider yet, and you're still daydreaming about your recent summer vacation. If you're having trouble finding falernum, you can always use our recipe to make your own at home.
The classic Vieux Carre is made with rye and cognac, sweet vermouth, and Benedictine. This variation subs in anejo tequila for the spirits, and chooses bright Lillet Blanc to use instead of the vermouth.
The folks at Mayahuel in NYC have developed some of the country's best agave-based cocktails, so it's no surprise that their Black Star, a reposado-tequila based number, is delicious. It's flavored with baking spices and a barspoon of apple butter, along with bourbon to fill out the body of the drink.
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