5 Fall Bourbon Cocktail Recipes

Ladies and gentleman, it is September, and you know what that means. Alright, so yes it does mean that football is back, and also that Halloween costumes are already lining the aisles of Target. But for our purposes, I'm talking about National Bourbon Heritage Month. Rejoice! Bourbon gets an entire month of observance, and it's not like one of those fake national days for the likes of Buzzfeed (and sometimes, yours truly) to take advantage of. This is an actual federal observance, and so we're here to observe it with fall bourbon cocktail recipes. But you're probably here for the cocktails, right? You want 'em and I've got 'em. Rather than just do a general post of bourbon cocktail recipes, it only seemed appropriate to do a round-up of fall bourbon cocktail recipes since the official start of autumn is a week away after all. And for good measure, I've thrown in a boozy bourbon dessert recipe at then end. Because I know what you want before you know you want it.

Apple Bottom

  • 2 oz. bourbon
  • .75 oz. maple syrup
  • .75 oz. lemon juice
  • Gala apples

Why Apple Bottom? Well, because you're muddling apples at the bottom of your cocktail shaker, but most importantly, because I like a good play off a rap song, especially when it involves T-Pain. For this fall bourbon cocktail, simply slice and chop up part of a Gala apple and muddle in a cocktail shaker to get some of the juice from it. Then add the bourbon, maple syrup, lemon juice, and ice to the cocktail shaker and shake. Strain into a glass filled with ice and garnish with more apple slices if you desire.

Apple Sauced

  • 2 oz. bourbon
  • .75 oz. maple syrup
  • .75 oz. lemon juice
  • Hard cider
  • Cinnamon
  • Apple to garnish

Let's hope you don't get sauced on this bourbon cocktail since it does have the addition of hard cider (hard cider does in fact have alcohol in it after all). Especially since National Bourbon Heritage Month is all about enjoying bourbon responsibly and in moderation. This fall bourbon cocktail really builds off the last one, but with the addition of topping it with hard cider, which I recommend only a little of. You'll add the bourbon, syrup, and lemon juice to a cocktail shaker with ice and shake. Strain it into a glass filled with ice and top with hard cider and sprinkle with cinnamon. I particularly loved the addition of cinnamon and even put a cinnamon stick in my drink for good measure.

Honey Bourbon Cider

  • 2.5 oz. apple cider
  • 1 oz. bourbon
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • Cinnamon stick
  • Fall spices like ground cinnamon or nutmeg (optional)
  • Couple of thin red apple slices

I actually included this bourbon cocktail recipe in a post I published about warm winter cocktails last year since it's a warm drink. However, I think it makes for a great fall cocktail, and can even be served over ice. To make it, you'll begin by heating the cider, honey, and apple slices in a small saucepan. Once it's warmed up, pour mixture into a glass and add bourbon, a cinnamon stick, and any other fall spices you'd like, such as grated cinnamon, nutmeg, or ginger. Serve as is warm or in a glass filled with ice.

Brown Derby

  • 2 oz. bourbon
  • 1 oz. grapefruit juice
  • .5 oz. honey syrup (essentially honey simple syrup)

This is one of my favorite simple bourbon cocktail recipes. It's sweet, it's sour, it's delicious. Okay, so perhaps it's not an official fall cocktail, but it looks fall, and being that it hails from Los Angeles, I had to include it. The Brown Derby dates back to the early 1900s when it was the signature drink at the Vendome Club. The story goes that it was named after one of Vendome's main competitors, the Brown Derby, which was built in the shape of a brown derby hat. To make the Brown Derby cocktail, add all of the ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice and shake. Fill into a chilled coupe glass.

I Know What You Did Laz Fall

  • 2 oz. chai tea infused bourbon
  • 2 oz. persimmon juice
  • .75 oz. simple syrup
  • .5 oz. lemon juice
  • Dash of bitters

This recipe comes from fellow purveyor of California and good drinks, Garrick Ramirez, who also takes some hella (only appropriate to drop a hella mention since Garrick is from San Francisco after all) beautiful photos, which you can see more of on his website, Weekend del Sol. According to Garrick, "I riffed off a delicious drink I had at 15 Romolo in San Francisco, making this cocktail for a relaxed fall weekend in Sonoma with friends and their young son, Laz." But don't be intimidated by things like chai tea infused bourbon and persimmon juice, which probably aren't a part of your daily diet. For the chai tea bourbon, it only requires dropping a few bags of chai tea into a bottle of bourbon and letting it steep for a couple hours. For the persimmon juice, Garrick juices persimmons, though you may also consider blending and then straining. Finally, simply add of the ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice and shake. Strain into a old fashioned glass filled with ice.

And for good measure, head over to my latest cooking with booze post, for a recipe for salted caramel bourbon ice cream. Winner, winner, bourbon ice cream dinner!