Looking for a perfect cool weather drink, something to beckon in the red and gold of fall? The Bowery Orchard might be the ticket. This autumn libation from bartending veteran Willy Shine is essentially a variation on a Whiskey Sour, but the additions of a few fun ingredients transform it into something altogether new. With fresh squeezed apple juice and a touch of elderflower cordial, it might be your new favorite way to welcome September and October, an orchard you’ll want to visit over and over.
The base of the cocktail is Tennessee Whiskey—Shine originally used Gentleman Jack, a high-end label from Jack Daniels, but one that’s reasonably priced for use in cocktails. To properly construct this drink, don’t substitute another kind of bourbon—the charcoal filtering in Tennessee whiskey is what gives it, and the Bowery Orchard, its signature smooth, gently sweet characteristic.
To build on the natural smoothness of Tennessee whiskey, Shine adds the usual simple syrup, but also a quarter-ounce of elderflower cordial. This is not the same as elderflower liqueur, like the ubiquitous St-Germain, but rather a non-alcoholic elderflower-flavored syrup. You can, however, use an elderflower liqueur in its place—considering the small volume and low-alcohol, it won’t raise the proof of the final product by much at all.
Lemon juice helps balance the sweetness of the drink by bringing much-needed acidity, while an ounce of apple juice makes it extra juicy and autumnal. As with all juices, the fresher the apple juice is, the better. Try to skip anything made with concentrate—if possible, grab a fresh squeezed apple juice from your local grocer or farmers market.
- 1 1/2 ounces Tennessee whiskey, such as Gentleman Jack
- 1 ounce apple juice
- 1/2 ounce lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- 1/2 ounce simple syrup
- 1/4 ounce elderflower cordial
- 1 dash bitters
- Garnish: Apple slice
Add the Tennessee whiskey, apple juice, lemon juice, simple syrup, elderflower cordial and bitters to a shaker filled with ice and shake until well-chilled.
Double-strain into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice cubes.
Garnish with an apple slice.