bourbon + spiced pear cocktail | fall cocktail favorites

This week has been a weird one. I’m slowly recovering from being sick with a virus that smacked me down on the couch for a week and a half. And my camera and my car both decided to get sick and die at the very same time. How is this fair?! Don’t we wish all of our mishaps and hiccups could be dispersed over several months’ time, but maybe having all the crap happen at once is a blessing.

I’m posting this delicious cocktail, but at the same time, I’m also on a serious cleanse: no caffeine, no sugar, no booze, no animal products. I’ve made it past week one, so I am feeling rather strong. I did take a slight deviation on Friday, when I met up with two friends at Café Max and had one of Max’s famous matcha green tea lattes, made with almond milk. My friend, Sherrie, who is coincidentally my health coach, couldn’t finish hers. With crazed eyes, I brazenly reached across the table and pulled her room-temperature latte closer to me and slurped up the last, lightly caffeinated drips. It was an enlightening moment on my caffeine dependency.

Ouch. Whatever, I balanced it all out with a round of green juice, so it’s all good.

bourbon + spiced pear cocktail | holly & flora

And if I haven’t mentioned it already, I am thoroughly embracing fall – all of its brilliant color, all of its aromas, all of the cozy, and copious amounts of its fruits and vegetables. I’ll admit that I’m more of an apple-lover than a pear-lover, but I’ve been stepping out of my comfort zone and am finding that I love the flavor of pears, especially when they are either roasted or paired with baking spices.

Or bourbon.

I created a cocktail for the Urban Outfitters blog this past week, and it simply screams so many of my favorite fall flavors – juiced pears, fresh sage and thyme, and toasty, bitter notes of orange peel, allspice, and cinnamon.

bourbon + spiced pear cocktail | holly & flora bourbon + spiced pear cocktail | holly & flora bourbon + spiced pear cocktail | holly & flora

The cocktail itself is a mashup of sweet, savory, herbaceous, and bitter aromas and flavors. I find that adding bitter notes to an otherwise fruity cocktail brings balance to the components of a cocktail and really brightens and sets it off. You can add bitter notes by adding an amaro or tossing in a few dashes of bitters to a cocktail. I always have a batch of bitters developing in my liquor cellar. Right now, I am making a lavender bitters, a celery version, and a cardamom blend.

Bitters are super easy to make, but if you’re not keen on sourcing out the various or possibly obscure ingredients necessary, one of my favorite bitters-makers, Hella Bitters out of Long Island, actually makes a DIY bitters kit. It couldn’t be more simple than using your favorite base spirit, like bourbon or gin, and adding the dried bitter components in the kit. I was really impressed with the quality of their ingredients, and their labels couldn’t be more classy.

bourbon + spiced pear cocktail | holly & flora bourbon + spiced pear cocktail | holly & flora

You can read more on the Urban Outfitters blog for the recipe for this bourbon and spice pear cocktail. And I was beyond happy to make yet another batch of bitters; I have a feeling they’ll show up in a few friends’ Christmas gifts this year.


Get the Bourbon + Spiced Pear Cocktail recipe over at the Urban Outfitters Blog and learn more about Hella Bitters’ Craft-Your-Own Bitters Kit HERE.


Cheers to a much better week than this one! Actually, cheers to an amazing finish to this week! I’m no longer sick, my car is fixed, my laptop is revived, and I have a new camera in my possession. Things are looking up!

Signing off with a few of my favorite ciderific pear, freshly picked apple, or all-things-autumn cocktails I’ve come across recently and wishing you a superb second week of November. November!? When did that happen? I’m still catching up on June.

XO,

Jayme

bourbon + spiced pear cocktail | holly & flora bourbon + spiced pear cocktail | holly & flora

Jayme Henderson

I am a sommelier-turned-farmer, who recently moved to Colorado's Western Slope to become a full-time grower of grapes and maker of wine. My husband, Steve, and I own and live on a vineyard, where we craft high-elevation white wine and rosé under our label, The Storm Cellar. I enjoy freelance writing and photography, and I am currently the cocktail columnist for Colorado's Spoke+Blossom magazine. I love playing with our two cats, gardening, mixing drinks, finding (and sipping!) great sparkling wine, cooking, playing the piano, and hiking.

RELATED POSTS

26 Comments

  1. Reply

    Becca Piastrelli

    November 11, 2015

    Everything you post is dripping with gorgeous! xo, Becca (thedabblist on IG)

    • Reply

      Jayme Henderson

      November 11, 2015

      Hi, Becca!! Thanks so much! 😀 …there are mad mounts of pears on my counters this week. Time for some pear butter and jam. But first, as always, cocktails. 😉 XO!!

  2. Reply

    danielle is rooting the sun

    November 11, 2015

    cheers to embracing all the lovely autumn vibrations jayme – something is so crisp and sharp about this time of year. something that pears seemingly compliment perfectly. great cocktail and i absolutely love the sound of the bitters you currently have in motion. xo

    • Reply

      Jayme Henderson

      November 12, 2015

      You said it so perfectly, Danielle. I’m always trying to {seriously, no pun intended!} pair my surroundings – the music, the weather, the colors, the feel – with whatever I’m eating or drinking or making. So, pears do contrast nicely on the warm, cozy vibes. Making bitters is addicting – be warned! They are so fab in tea, too! 💕

  3. Reply

    Liz @ Floating Kitchen

    November 11, 2015

    This is such a gorgeous cocktail, Jayme. I love pears in cocktails, and I feel like they aren’t used nearly enough. I can’t wait to try this out! Glad your week is improving!

    • Reply

      Jayme Henderson

      November 12, 2015

      I am so with you, Liz! I have been doing all kinds of cocktails with them this month, and I’ve fallen in love with them again. And yes, the week is improving by leaps and bounds, thanks. Today I’m off and am going to soak up the sun and shake it allllll off! 😘 Thank you so much!

  4. Reply

    Edith

    November 12, 2015

    Love this, just a beautiful post!!!

    • Reply

      Jayme Henderson

      November 13, 2015

      Edie!! Thanks so much!! I am in love with all of the changes on your site and where you’re going web your artwork. You are such an inspiration! Love you!

  5. Reply

    jaime

    November 12, 2015

    hi! this cocktail is so enticing–i love that you paired bourbon (which is too often dragged further into the realm of cloyingly dark/sweet) with such fresh, floral flavors. so creative and gorgeous! i’ve never actually mixed drinks with bitters before but i’m such a nut for bitter flavors, acidic flavors, and really any of those subtle-but-totally-necessary contrast notes that enhance other flavors. i’m totally checking out the DIY bitter kit–thank you!

    • Reply

      Jayme Henderson

      November 13, 2015

      Jaime, if you love bitter flavors, you will become addicted to bitters. I’m all about those “subtle-but-totally-necessary contrast notes, as well. Cocktail-making is so much like finding just the right balance in wine; isn’t it? Let me know if you make your own!

      Thanks for the kind words – XOXO!

  6. Reply

    Sherrie Castellano (@withfoodandlove)

    November 16, 2015

    I’d happily share my matcha latte with you any day, anytime, promise. The post turned out really beautiful on UO, woot woot congrats on that!! And, thank you for linking up to my cranberry shrub. Next time I’m in town {and you’re done with Lean + Green} let’s do cocktails, xx!!

LEAVE A COMMENT