While we reluctantly say goodbye to the hot summer months, autumn brings with it an array of opportunities including food and beverage options. With its deep golden hue and rich, tart taste, maple syrup is synonymous with autumn (even in Australia). We have it over pancakes and waffles, but what about in our drinks? Here are some must-try maple cocktails for this autumn season.
Let’s face it, an article about maple cocktails couldn’t begin without including the obvious – whisky and bourbon. This unique riff on the signature old fashioned can actually be made with either rum or bourbon, depending on your preference or mood. As a matter of fact, while this twist seems to have originated in Scotland (hence the use of whisky), it is now predominantly made with rum. Here’s how to make this rich yet sweetened delight.
2 shots of bourbon or rum
⅓ shot of maple syrup (if you’ve got a sweet tooth then go for gold)
2 splashes of orange bitters.
Stir it all up and strain it into a chilled whiskey glass. No Old Fashioned is complete without that ridiculously large chunk of ice and a dried orange wedge – so if you’re wanting to impress, get crafty with your ice making skills – the “oohs” and ‘“aahs” from your guests will be worth it!
We’re continuing on the whiskey buzz here with this treacle version of the delicious whiskey sour. With its fluffy head (thank you egg white) and zesty body, you could say a whiskey sour is like a liquid lemon meringue pie – yum! Its sweet yet refreshing taste has made it a firm favourite in the summer months, so swapping sugar syrup for maple really amps up the autumnal factor. Here’s how to make this tarty little number.
60ml of bourbon or rye whiskey
20 ml of lemon juice
15 ml egg white (optional, but come on, how we can omit that frothiness?)
15 ml of maple syrup
3 drops of Angostura bitters to serve
Orange slice to garnish
Mix all ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice (you know the drill). Pour over a chilled glass, add the bitters and orange slice and voila, dessert is served!
If you’ve been to the US (or just watched the episode in Friends where Ross goes to Vermont) you’ll know that this state has a maple version of pretty much anything! They’ve even mastered delicious maple candy and butter! It’s no surprise then that there’s a maple cocktail named after the area. The Old Vermont is a vintage cocktail that interestingly uses gin with maple syrup for a very unique blend of flavours, it sounds like an odd choice, but boy does it work.
60 ml Four Pillars Rare Dry Gin
25 ml freshly squeezed orange juice
20 ml of freshly squeezed lemon juice
20 ml of maple syrup
1 drop of angostura bitters
Shake all ingredients together and pour over ice and you’ve got yourself the perfect autumn aperitif!
Drinks in the autumn are never complete without a marg, so what does a margarita – autumn version look like? We’re adding apple cider and swapping simple syrup for maple syrup to create a showstopping version of the classic margarita. It not only looks as lively as its original counterpart, but it also tastes it too!
60ml of gold tequila
30ml of spiced apple cider
30ml of maple syrup
20ml of lime juice
1 sweet apple sliced
Combine the liquid ingredients in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Pour over a chilled glass and garnish with an apple slice. Go one step further and dip the rim of the glasses in salt and cinnamon – we challenge you not to ‘fall’ in love with this one!
Can we technically call this a cocktail? Who knows, but it’s delicious and needs to be talked about. Turns out Guinness isn’t the only tasty black drink that originates from the Emerald Isle, their Irish coffees are a warm liquid hug we all need. The Irish don’t mess around when it comes to creating drinks fast, so the original recipe has just four ingredients – hot coffee, brown sugar, whiskey and cream. So what happens if we swap brown sugar with maple syrup? You’ll have to make it to find out!
Heat an Irish Coffee glass by pouring hot water in and out
Brew a dark roast coffee and pour it into the heated glass
Add in 30ml of Jameson Irish whiskey
Add in a teaspoon of maple syrup and stir.
Add whipped cream.
Hot tip – many recipes will tell you to use whipped cream from a can, but if you really want to impress, heat a spoon and place it over the glass, slowly scoop the cream onto the spoon and watch as it sits on top of the coffee without seeping through. This gives the Irish coffee that seamless black and white stripe. This can take some practise, however – so I guess you’ll just have to keep making more until you get it right!
This list has been heavy on the rich, warm, mellow drinks but we can’t forget that in some parts of Australia, the warmer temperatures can sometimes call for a refreshing thirst quencher. So we’ve incorporated the taste of autumn into a light and breezy tipple for this very reason. Introducing the sparkling maple orange vodka spritzer! This can easily be made with or without alcohol, making this a versatile thirst quencher for everyone!
85ml of freshly squeezed orange juice
30ml of vodka
60ml of sparkling mineral water
20ml lime juice
1 teaspoon of maple syrup
Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Pour over ice into chilled glasses. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary and a wedge of lime.
Ready to get the cocktail shaker out? Shop your ingredients at your nearest Sessions Liquor store or online.