It's a conundrum a lot of us hosts and hostesses face: how to mix up the perfect party cocktail for all of your guests without spending the entire party behind the bar. Audrey Saunders of Pegu Club in New York came up with this big-batch recipe for just that purpose: so party-throwers can provide a tasty tipple without spending all evening tipping jiggers.
"This is one of my favorite seasonal cocktails," Saunders said of the Applejack Cobbler. "Whenever I put it on the menu, we go through 2 quarts to 1 gallon each night, so this makes the service aspect much more efficient—nobody likes waiting too long to have a drink." What works for the bar works for a party: it's "a nice, festive option to begin the festivities with," says Saunders.
Since the drink can be made ahead of time and kept in the refrigerator, it's perfect for those of us whose planning skills leave a little to be desired. Mix up a batch, stick it in a pitcher and forget about it until the first guests arrive. We even left some of our batch overnight and it was just fine the next day, although you may want to mix yours a little closer to launch time.
A combination of Lairds Applejack, bittersweet Punt e Mes, and apple schnapps creates a spicy-sweet base that's mixed with cranberry sauce, tangy pomegranate molasses, and fresh orange juice. The result is a smooth, satisfying blend of sweet, spicy and sour. It's great with a cheese plate and roasted nuts, and we'll be filing it away for serving at Thanksgiving, too.
Mixing with a stick blender instead of muddling saves your wrists: the at-home mixologist can blend it up and forget about it. As the pro put it, "I'm looking to make someone's task list easier—not more complicated."