I love fall! I love wandering the city aimlessly over crisp leaves with coffee in hand. The cool air touched with the smell of wood burning somewhere off in the distance. One of my favorite movies is You've Got Mail. In it, Tom Hanks comments on how amazing the city is in the fall. "It makes me wanna buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address." I'd gladly accept that bouquet.  

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For me, fall marks the transition from clean and crisp spirits to robust darker spirits. In a nutshell, it's whiskey weather. I set out recently to create a whiskey cocktail that encapsulated everything I love about this time of year.

The UP & AT 'EM is a twist on the classic old fashioned. It combines the vanilla and oak of bourbon with the complimentary flavors of orange, chocolate, and coffee. The highlight of this cocktail has to be the cold brew ice ball.

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In lieu of traditional ice, I decided to create an ice ball using cold brew coffee. Simply pour your favorite cold brew into an ice mold and allow to freeze overnight. You can use your cold brew ice to flavor and chill your favorite cocktails or to simply make iced coffee.

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What I love about this cocktail, aside from how well all the flavors come together, is how the taste is constantly evolving. The UP & AT 'EM starts out as a bourbon forward cocktail then slowly mellows into an amazing coffee drink. It's a cocktail to relax with and enjoyed slowly over time. It's also my new favorite brunch drink. The coffee wakes you up and energizes you while the bourbon provides the kick in the pants needed to tackle whatever the day may bring.



2oz Bourbon

1/2oz Grand Marnier

1/4 oz simple syrup

2 dashes Chocolate Bitters

Cold Brew ice block


In a shaker combine bourbon, Grand Marnier, syrup, and bitters. 

Shake with ice.

Pour over cold brew ice in an old fashioned glass.


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An Old-Fashioned Father's Day


A sample of Maker's 46 was received for this post.

This father's Day is particularly special for my family, as it will be with my husband's first. Finding out we were having a baby was the biggest surprise of our lives. Now, that our daughter is here we couldn't imagine life without her. To mark the special occasion I decided to create a Build Your Own Old-Fashioned Bar for Father's Day.

Simple to create, a Build Your Own Old-Fashioned Bar is a great way to impress guests while keeping you free to mingle. Simply provide a bottle or two of bourbon, citrus (lemon, orange, grapefruit), sugar, and spices. Guests will have fun creating their own Old Fashioned recipe.

It's tradition in my husband's family to celebrate Dad with a bottle of bourbon. Every year my husband searches for a new bourbon he and his dad (and I) can share. This year we'll be sipping Maker's 46.

Maker's 46 is the newest product from Maker's Mark. Fully matured Maker's Mark is aged with seared wooden stages until the flavor is exactly right.  At 94 proof Maker's 46 has a rich and creamy caramel flavor with an oaky flavor. The perfect bourbon for enjoying an Old Fashioned.

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Maker’s Mark® Old Fashioned

1.5 ounces Maker’s Mark®

Splash of club soda or water

1 teaspoon sugar

Orange Slice

Maraschino Cherry


Muddle bitters and sugar in an Old-Fashioned glass. 

Fill glass 3/4 full of ice.

Add Maker’s Mark® Bourbon and splash of club soda or water.

Garnish with orange slice and maraschino cherry.

To make Ginger Tea Syrup:

Combine 2 parts steeped ginger tea with one part granulated sugar in a mason jar. 

Seal jar tightly and shake until sugar dissolves.

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Ginger Tea Old-Fashioned

1.5 ounces Bourbon

.25 ounce Ginger Tea Infused Syrup

6 drops 18.21 Barrel Aged Bitters

Lemon Peel for garnish


Combine bourbon, syrup, and bitters in an old-fashioned glass.

Fill with ice and stir.

Garnish with lemon peel. 



World Whisky Day 2016

Celebrate Whiskey in all forms no matter how you like it. Sip it neat or on the rocks. Add a splash of ginger. Or mix up in your favorite cocktail. The no wrong way to enjoy! Here's a few of the Whiskies I'll be sipping in honor of World Whisky Day, May 21st. 

My Go-to Bourbon.

I've mentioned in my post How I Stock My Home Bar for $200 that Bulleit Bourbon is my go-to bourbon. Bulleit Bourbon is great for cocktails because of it's pleasing flavor. It's a bourbon that, while can't be considered light, isn't overly aggressive and abrasive. It's a friendly bourbon with appealing baking spice notes and little burn. 


Old Line American Whiskey

I'm so happy and excited about the recent boom in local spirits production in Maryland. Thanks to changes in laws we can now make negronies with local gin or manhattans with local rye whiskey. 

I'm particularly excited about Old Line American Whiskey, single malt made with entirely from barley grown and malted in the Pacific Northwest. I've had a few barley whiskies and have grown quite fond. 

Aged in new charred oak barrels, Old Line has the familiar aroma of a bourbon. A smooth medium body with a malty flavor and notes of vanilla and maple. It's easy to sip and excellent on the rocks.



Up until recently I hadn't had a chance to try Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye. So when I was offered a sample I jumped on it. Who wouldn't want the chance to try the 2016 World Whisky of the Year. As an American whiskey-with-an-"e" drinker, it took me a moment to really take in this Whisky-with-out-the-"e". What did I take away from this Canadian Rye? Spice. And lot's of it.

I love rye. I love the spice and depth you get with rye. With a 90% rye mash this is a true Rye whiskey. There's no hiding it with a high corn ratio. I find it's spice most palatable with ice. And it plays amazingly well with Fever Tree ginger beer. 

Will Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye become my new favorite go to, probably not. But I'll give it a friendly nod when I walk by. And every now and then it'll find a place on the home bar.


Looking for some cocktails to enjoy favorite whiskey? Here are a few of my favs.

Nightcap Cocktails

Whether it's the end of a long hard day or the cap on a fun night out, nightcap drinks are there to calm the soul and lull you to slumber. Often the lone cocktail of the evening, I prefer my nightcap to be spirit forward and robust. Here I give you my three favorite classic cocktails for capping off the night. 

Rob Roy

Rob Roy

Rob Roy

Rob Roy


Think Manhattan but with scotch.



Last Word - Nightcap Cocktails

Last Word - Nightcap Cocktails

Last Word - Nightcap Cocktails

Last Word - Nightcap Cocktails


Fitting name for a nightcap cocktail.

Remember the Maine - Cocktail Crafty

Remember the Maine - Cocktail Crafty

Remember The Maine - Nightcap Cocktails

Remember The Maine - Nightcap Cocktails





Raise a Glass to Spring: 7 Cocktails for Warmer Weather

Raise a Glass to Spring: 7 Cocktails for Warmer Weather

Spring can not get here quick enough. To give Mother Nature a little push, I decided to focus on light and herbaceous cocktails for spring. 

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