The Gingered Apple

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As I’ve mentioned before, I don’t enjoy overly sweet cocktails. If I had to choose between a strawberry daiquiri and a gin and tonic, I’d pick the gin any day. So that means you can count me out on all of your gingerbread martinis and drunken pumpkin pies. I concocted a cocktail for everyone like myself to drink this holiday season. It starts out with a shot of Irish whiskey, a swizzle of spicy homemade ginger syrup, a splash of tart apple cider. and then topped off with a little ginger ale for some fizz. The cinnamon rim adds some much needed spice and a festive touch. The whiskey will warm your belly and give you just enough buzz to listen to your weird uncle’s post-dinner political rants. The Gingered Apple won’t fill you up like those super rich holiday martinis do, which means more pumpkin pie for you! Don’t be intimidated by the ginger syrup. It’s surprisingly easy to make. You don’t even need to peel the ginger. I just thinly sliced a piece of ginger slightly longer than my thumb and steeped it along with water and sugar in a saucepan for an hour. It’s one of those recipes you don’t have to babysit. Just make sure that you strain the syrup well. Pieces of ginger floating in your drink is not that appetizing.

gaw ingredients

The Gingered Apple

  • cinnamon for the rim
  • a shot of Irish whiskey
  • 2 oz of ginger syrup (about a shot and a half)
  • 5 oz of apple cider
  • a splash of ginger ale
  • apple slices and a cinnamon stick for garnish (optional)

1. Wet the rim of a tumbler with your finger. Sprinkle some cinnamon on a plate and twist the wet side of the glass in the cinnamon until the rim is thoroughly coated. Carefully place 3 ice cubes in the rimmed glass.

2. Pour a shot of whiskey and a shot and a half of ginger syrup in the glass. Stir to combine. Add apple cider until the glass is 3/4 of the way full. Stir. Then top off the drink with a splash of ginger ale. Add apple slices and a cinnamon stick to garnish. Sit by the fire and enjoy your drink.

gaw finished best

Whiskey that’s old enough to buy cigarettes is a nice touch.


The Ultimate Spicy Bloody Mary

I’m already thinking about your weekend, even though it’s only Thursday. I’m thinking about a boozy Sunday brunch with your girlfriends where you obsess over your latest Home Goods purchase (I’m not the only one who does this, right?!). You will serve these eggs with these pancakes. Your girlfriends will love them. I’m sorry for coming off a little bossy. It’s just that I live for boozy Sunday brunch and I want you to have the best Sunday Funday possible. My Spicy Bloody Mary recipe will do just that.

I’ve never been a sweet cocktail girl. Fruit juice of any kind makes my stomach very unhappy and grenadine makes me cringe. I tend to drink more refreshing and savory cocktails than anything. If anyone were to ask me what my absolute favorite cocktail on the planet is, I would tell them it’s the Spicy Bloody Mary from The Smokey Barque in Frankfort, Illinois. It’s perfection in a glass. I even order it when I go there for dinner, it’s that good. At The Smokey Barque they infuse their vodka in-house with jalapenos, lemons, and limes which makes for the most perfectly delightful spicy kick. In my version, I spice it up with the addition of horseradish and tabasco sauce. This way, you can control how spicy they are without skimping on liquor.

My tips for Boozy Perfection

As far as toppings go, I’m kind of obsessed with these Bloody Mary pickles from Archer Farms. I’m not a fan of super briny Bloody Marys and this eliminates that. I also think bacon is pretty essential but maybe that’s just me. But whatever you do, please don’t feel like you have to put a giant celery stalk in your drink. No one eats it and it will just get thrown out. There are 2 factors that contribute to the perfect Bloody Mary, and they are the quality of the vodka and the amount of ice. When you’re purchasing vodka to make in a specialty cocktail, go the extra mile and buy Grey Goose. It really is worth it. If you buy cheap liquor your cocktail will taste cheap. Another key factor is the amount of ice. Bloody Marys taste better with a lot of ice. They go down much smoother when they’re icy cold.



The Perfect Amount of Ice

ingredients 3

The Ultimate Spicy Bloody Mary

Yields 1 Serving


  • 1/2 of a lime cut into wedges
  • Lawrys seasoning salt, for rimming the glass
  • plenty of ice
  • 1 and 1/2 shots of Grey Goose
  • dash of celery salt
  • 2 shakes of Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 shakes of Tabasco sauce
  • cracked black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp of horseradish
  • 1 cup of V8 tomato juice
  • Bloody Mary pickles (for garnish)
  • bacon strips (for garnish)

1. Rub a lime wedge over the rim of a glass. Dip the rim into a plate sprinkled with Lawrys to line the glass. Very carefully fill the glass 3/4 of the way full with ice. Pour vodka, celery salt, Worcestershire, Tabasco, black pepper, horseradish, and the rest of lime, onto the ice. Then stir well. You want the ingredients to coat the ice.

2. Very carefully pour the tomato juice into the glass and stir some more. Garnish with your favorite toppings and enjoy your weekend!

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Grey Goose is even better if it’s a housewarming present from your friend Joe ❤

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