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Fall is a time of the year for darker spirits

SPONSORED — Oh, and it’s also when Halloween comes on the calendar.

Bourbon is the perfect pairing with that pinch of autumn that’s in the air, the changing of the leaves and certainly the crisp sweetness of an apple.

OK, it’s not like there’s a bad season for bourbon. It’s just that the fall is a particularly good time for it as we phase out the summer cocktails that are primed for the early evening and aren’t quite ready for the hot toddy’s that are a necessary fortification against winter weather.

Here’s a drink that’s perfect for a Saturday afternoon watching college football or to serve at a dinner party as the fall flavors will set a festive mood for the evening. It is harvest season after all, and there’s no better crop to feature than apples:

Apple Dream

1 oz Heritage Distilling Co.’s Brown Sugar Bourbon 103
1 oz Apple Butter
½ oz ginger ale
¼ oz lime juice

Add all ingredients to shaker filled with ice.
Shake and strain into martini glass

And in the fall, there’s still room for sweetness. Kids are well aware of that with the pillowcase that they’re planning to fill up with candy.

And instead of trying to pair a drink with the peanut-butter cup you’re planning to liberate from someone’s stash, try something that’s more potable (and more potent):

Casper the Peachy Ghost

1 oz Heritage Distilling Co.’s Sweet Ghost Pepper Vodka
2 oz Peach Tea

Serve over ice

Black Widow

1 oz Lemon Vodka
2 oz Izze Sparkling Blackberry

Garnish with lemon

And finally, you don’t need a season to enjoy a Bloody Mary. In fact, you don’t need any reason other than a desire for a cocktail that is just as perfect while sipped in a parking lot before a football game as it is during brunch.

Bloody Mary

1 oz Heritage Distilling Co. vodka
3 oz bloody mary mix

Lots of options here starting with the vodka. Heritage Distilling Co.’s Bacon flavored Vodka or D’s Seasoned Vodka both work great in a savory drink like this. Experimenting with Heritage Distilling Co.’s Sweet Ghost Pepper Vodka provides a little more kick and for a classic taste you can’t beat Batch No. 12 vodka.

Garnishes are just as important. You can go with the classics like celery, olives and a lemon wedge. But don’t be afraid to try something different like a green bean, a pickle spear or even an asparagus stalk.

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