With the weather turning modestly cooler by dipping into the low 50s at night (hey, its California after all) and the days getting longer, it has me thinking about crisp Autumn days back East in Boston, when you wake up to find a thin layer of hoarfrost on the grass, the leaves have turned a bright crimson and your breathe leaves a fog when you exhale. Winter is coming, but in the meantime, there is much to enjoy – the Head of the Charles regatta, leaf peeping, apple picking, college football as its meant to be seen – bundled up on a cold bleacher with a flask of whiskey in your pocket to keep you warm.
It also means the Fall harvest – cranberries, pumpkins, winter squash, celeriac, parsnips, beets, turnips, chestnuts, blackberries, crisp apples and ripe pears. Married to roasted and braised meats, its the season of bountiful comfort food. Sadly, this being California (I can’t believe I said that), its not quite cold enough in October to want to sit down to a long dinner of rich foods featuring plates of acorn squash, roasted chestnuts, meat pies and braised pork with apples. But the evening cool has me almost wishing the weather cold enough to want to cook that kind of long rich meal..
Oh well, at least there is a drink that has a hint of wintry places, warm fires and hearty feasts. And it even has the right name.
2 oz. Laird’s straight apple brandy
1/2 oz. pear eau de vie
1/2 oz. pimento dram
1/4 oz. Punt y Mes or Carpano Antica sweet vermouth
dash of bitters
Stir with cracked ice and strain into cocktail glass. Garnish with cinnamon stick.
Recipe courtesy of The Cocktail Chronicles.