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December 5, 2022

Autumnal Libations

Fall cocktails to make with local ingredients

Fall is in the air. Get into the spirit with these autumnally inspired cocktails that you can make at home with local ingredients.

Whether you’re hosting a holiday happy hour or dinner party or just looking for inspiration to spice up your Thursday night cocktails, these fall inspired cocktails made with local ingredients are sure to tantalize. Fall cocktail flavor profiles include apples and spice, pumpkin and spice, and everything nice.  

Pumpkin Bourbon Smash Cocktail 

Who needs a pumpkin spice latte when you can have a pumpkin spiced cocktail? This Pumpkin Bourbon Smash has all of the spiced goodness of pumpkin pie with a whiskey kick and is sure to be a hit as a pre-Thanksgiving meal drink or at any fall gathering. 


  • 2 oz Griffo Distillery Stony Point Whiskey
  • 1 oz pumpkin spice syrup (Sonoma Syrup Company makes one)
  • 1/4 oz lemon juice
  • 4 oz soda water
  • Lemon wedges


Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add pumpkin spice syrup, bourbon and lemon juice for the cocktail. Shake well. Fill rimmed rocks glass with ice. Strain the cocktail into the glass.

Top with soda water. Give the cocktail one final stir and serve.

You can either purchase these ingredients separately to make this cocktail at home or simply buy a Pumpkin Bourbon Smash Cocktail kit from Griffo, which includes everything you need to make 12 cocktails.

Pumpkin Spice White Russian

We think this pumpkin spiced version of a White Russian is so delicious, you might never go back to the original. Alternatively, if you’ve never been a fan of White Russians—this one will change your mind.

  • 1 oz Griffo Distillery cold brew coffee liqueur
  • 1 oz Hanson’s vodka
  • ½ tsp pumpkin pie spice 
  • 2 oz heavy cream
  • Ice cubes
  • Cinnamon sticks, optional for garnish

If you don’t have a pre-blended pumpkin pie spice mix, you can easily make some by blending together 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon ground ginger, ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg, ½ teaspoon ground cloves and ½ teaspoon allspice.


Add the coffee liqueur, vodka, pumpkin pie spice, heavy cream and ice cubes to a cocktail shaker. Shake together for 10 seconds. Pour into a low ball or rocks glass over ice. Garnish with a dusting of pumpkin pie spice and a cinnamon stick.

Apple Brandy Toddy

Apple toddies were popular in the early 1800s in the U.S. until Prohibition put the kibosh on colonial cocktail culture. Today they are regaining their popularity. This apple toddy replaces whiskey with apple brandy and includes a dollop of apple brandy butter from Lala’s Jam Bar. It’s the perfect cocktail for sipping on a nippy fall evening. 


  • 1.5 oz Barber Lee Gravenstein Apple Brandy
  • 1 oz Lala’s Apple Brandy Butter *available for purchase in Barber Lee’s tasting room as well as online via their website store, and made by Lala’s Jam Bar
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 4-5 oz hot water (to taste)


Add boiling water to a glass or mug. Stir in the apple brandy, apple butter and lemon. Garnish with a cinnamon stick or slice of apple.

Gravenstein Gimlet 

Originally created for the Gravenstein Apple Fair, this apple-icious twist on a classic gimlet from Spirit Works Distillery incorporates apple jelly, grenadine and lime-coriander bitters with gin and lime. 


  • 1.5 oz Spirit Works Distillery Navy Strength Gin
  • .75 oz Lime Juice (fresh squeezed is best)
  • .5 oz Grenadine
  • 1 heaping teaspoon Fourteen Magpies Gravenstein Apple Jelly
  • 3 dashes Bitter Housewife Lime & Coriander Bitters


Shake everything with ice, then strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with an apple chip (optional).

Mulled Cider-Wine 

Little Apple Treat’s beautiful modern mulling spice blend includes dried apples, heirloom rose petals, organic hibiscus blossoms, cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods, cloves and allspice. This fragrant blend serves as the base for the prettiest mulled wine (or cider) you’ve ever tasted and instantly turns any gathering into a festive holiday season affair. 


  • 1 jar Little Apple Treats mulled spices
  • 1 bottle of rose or red wine
  • 1 pint apple cider 


Simmer ½ jar of mulling spice with 1 pint apple cider for 10 minutes. Add 1 bottle of wine (we like rose) and rewarm gently. Strain, garnish with fresh citrus and serve!