Cocktail & Other Recipes By Spirit Other Whiskey Cocktails

Washington Apple Shot

two washington apple shots on a wooden table / Tim Nusog

The Washington Apple Shot is a slammable version of the Washington Apple cocktail, nothing more, nothing less. Its equal-parts recipe of Canadian whisky, sour apple schnapps and cranberry juice can be scaled up or down, depending on the occasion. If you’re serving a crowd, multiply each ingredient by however many drinkers are in your midst, and fill a few shaker tins. Then you’ll be ready to pour the contents and toast with your friends—always better than downing a solo shot.

The Washington Apple Shot is surprisingly balanced considering it calls for two tart, sweet mixers. The strong Canadian whisky cuts through the cranberry and the sour-apple schnapps, and the club soda adds a hint of dilution and effervescence, which ties the other ingredients together with a neat bow. When deciding on your whisky, choose your favorite bottle. You just want something with enough punch and structure to stand up against those mixers.

If you’re looking to pull back the tartness of this shot, you can substitute Calvados for the schnapps. This French apple brandy adds apple flavor, minus the artificial sweeteners and mouth-puckering sourness. It also increases the drink’s proof.

If you do go the Calvados route, you’re not technically making a Washington Apple Shot. But cocktail improvisations are all the rage, so just give it a different name—maybe something that’s barely French, like Le Washington Apple Shot. Hey, you’re making a shot, not fulfilling your school language requirement.


  • 3/4 ounce Canadian whisky

  • 3/4 ounce sour apple schnapps

  • 3/4 ounce cranberry juice

  • 1 splash club soda, chilled


  1. Add the whisky, schnapps and cranberry juice to a shaker with ice and shake until well-chilled.

  2. Strain into a shot glass.

  3. Top with the club soda.