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Summer Cider Cocktails

Really? Cider Mixology? Yes, indeed. Welcome to the surprising and delightful world of cider cocktails.

People have been mixing cider and spirits for pretty much as long as they’ve been making them. Colonists in New England enjoyed a mix of local cider and rum that they called a Stone Fence… reportedly because your head would feel like it had rammed into one if you overindulged. A mix of one part rum to two or three parts cider served over ice, it’s one of the easiest cider cocktails to make and a great starting point. Variations abounded in early America, and you could easily swap the rum for rye or bourbon and still sip a little part of history. A couple of shakes of bitters or a twist of lemon peel would also be a fine idea.

When you are ready to explore the world of cider cocktails a little further, think about how you might take a well-known cocktail and adapt it. Try swapping out the tonic water in a classic Gin and Tonic for cider, for example, maybe with a splash of ginger juice to spice things up. Let your imagination run wild and remember that the experiments are half the fun!

To get you started, here are three delicious one-of-a-kind summer cocktails, inspired by the season.

Padua Sunset

This cocktail has something for everyone – a little fruity, sweetly spicy, plus just a touch of bitter orange. Use fresh blood orange juice if you can find it for a little extra flavor punch and dynamite color. It’s just smashing made with Tilted Shed Ciderwork’s Topwork.

Ingredients

  • 1.5 oz vodka
  • 3 oz freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 0.5 oz Aperol
  • 4-5 oz dry sparkling cider, preferably one with pronounced tannins

Directions

  • 01 Mix all of the ingredients together, then pour over a tall glass of ice.

In The Pink

Rosé ciders seem to be everywhere this summer. And why not? They’re sexy and fun – and the perfect start for a summer cocktail? Try this one with Glow made by Alpenfire Cider.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 teaspoon pink peppercorns
  • 1 slice of lemon, cut in half
  • 1.5 oz of craft sloe gin
  • 1/2 oz Dolin Vermouth de Chambéry Rouge
  • 1/2 oz St. George Bruto Americano
  • 4 oz semi-dry sparkling rosé cider

Directions

  • 01 Crush the pink peppercorns and ½ of the lemon slice in a shaker.
  • 02 Add the sloe gin, the vermouth, and the Bruto Americano, and a handful of ice cubes.
  • 03 Shake well for 30 to 60 seconds, then strain into a martini glass.
  • 04 Add the cider, give it a stir, and serve with the second ½ lemon slice floating on the top.

The Bitter Poet

This is a simple cocktail that’s perfect for amaro fans, richly bittersweet and completely addictive. And since it doesn’t contain any distilled spirits it’s a little lighter in alcohol while still being full of flavor. Slyboro’s single varietal Kingston Black is a fine choice for this cocktail.

Ingredients

  • 1 oz Punt e Mes Vermouth
  • 1oz Cappelletti Aperitivo (wine-based aperitif)
  • 5 oz dry or semi-dry cider, still or sparkling
  • ¼ of a fresh lime

Directions

  • 01 Mix the Punt e Mes, Cappelletti, and cider together in a glass.
  • 02 Squeeze in the lime and add a handful of ice cubes.

Recipes courtesy of Darlene Hayes, author of Cider Cocktails – Another Bite of the Apple

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