After one of the hottest California summers on record, the relief of fall is finally, blissfully, in full swing. And as the season changes, so do our tastes. This means it’s time to indulge in some fall cocktails that celebrate the seasonal flavors we love.
To help you effortlessly adjust your love of cocktails to a new season, we’ve rounded up some of the best recipes for fall alcoholic drinks, all packed with full-bodied fall flavors.
Think apple, nutmeg, cinnamon, berries — the list goes on. From well-known drinks to classic cocktails with a fall-inspired twist, we’ve even included a fall mocktail for those taking a break from alcohol. If you’re looking for the best drinks for the season, we’ve got you covered — here’s our guide to the 10 best fall cocktails.
One of the original cocktail “sours,” the Sidecar is the blueprint for iconic cocktails like the Margarita. Gorgeously spiced to give you the ultimate fall feeling, enjoy a Sidecar as an after-dinner indulgence.
- 2 oz. Cognac
- ¾ oz. lemon juice
- ¾ oz. Triple sec
2. Whiskey Sour
The rich warmth of bourbon meets the distinct tang of lemon in the delectable whiskey sour. Smoky, subtle and sophisticated, this cocktail is not just an ideal gift for whiskey lovers but also an excellent accompaniment for after-dinner parties.
- 1 ½ oz. bourbon whiskey
- 1 oz. fresh lemon juice
- 1 dash egg whites
- ½ oz. Gomme syrup
If you’re looking for fall bourbon cocktails that offer a distinctive flavor, our premixed Whiskey Sour uses rich Bulleit Bourbon, a smooth whiskey with spicy notes of cinnamon, nutmeg and clove.
3. Apple Cider Mimosa
Spice up brunch by bringing some fall crispness to the already trendy mimosa cocktail. One of our favorite fall mixed drinks, the Apple Cider Mimosa is a great example of how to take a classic drink and reinvent its flavors.
- 4 oz. Brut champagne
- 2 oz. all-natural apple cider
- 1 oz. cinnamon whiskey
- 1 slice of apple as a garnish
Showcasing the best of seasonal produce with fresh blackberries is the Bramble. This versatile drink is popular in summer but is just as awesome as a fall gin cocktail. Gin can be paired with a range of foods, including meat and cheese platters — which makes it ideal for home hosting!
- 2 oz. gin
- 1 oz. lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- ½ oz. crème de mûre liqueur
- Fresh blackberry or lemon half-wheel as a garnish
5. Espresso Martini
The Espresso Martini is one of our most well-loved fall vodka drinks. With a rich, bold taste, it’s adored by cocktail drinkers and coffee lovers alike. While most commonly served cold, if you’re in the mood for a hot drink with a little pep, this versatile cocktail can also be made using freshly brewed espresso with a splash of hot milk. Ta-da, it easily becomes one of the best warm fall drinks.
- 2 oz. vodka
- ½ oz. coffee liqueur
- 1 oz. espresso, freshly brewed (or cold brew concentrate)
- Coffee beans as a garnish
Another industry-recognized favorite, our premixed Espresso Martini cocktail is a smooth, indulgent classic made with Ketel One Vodka and FAIR Cafe Liqueur.
6. Damson Gin
A member of the plum family, the damson is a small fruit with vibrant dark blue skin and a strong, sour flavor. Ready for picking in September and October, this is a true fall fruit. Creating this cocktail may take a little effort with some overnight prep, but once you’re done, you’ll have the taste of fall in a glass. This recipe can also be used with vodka.
- 500 gm. damsons
- 250 gm. golden caster sugar
- 1L bottle gin
The Negroni, with its vibrant red color, is considered the king of Italian Campari cocktails. This trendy drink is known to flourish in the spring and summer, but it actually shines just as brightly when served as an autumn cocktail.
- 1 oz. Campari
- 1 oz. sweet red vermouth
- 1 oz. gin
- Orange peel as a garnish
Crafted by master mixologist Patrick Pisolesi, our premixed Negroni cocktail contains equal parts Tanqueray Gin, Cocchi Storico Vermouth di Torino, Campari and Angostura Aromatic Bitters, making it a punchy, memorable drink.
8. Pear Martini
The Pear Martini is another fashionable drink that can satisfy your needs for a fall martini. A fruity variation on the vodka martini, pears are delicious when teamed with a chocolate dessert, so enjoy one as a sweet treat on a chilly evening or when entertaining friends.
- ½ fresh ripe pear
- 2 oz. pear vodka
- ½ oz. lemon juice
- 1 oz. simple syrup
- 2 dashes orange bitters
9. Old Fashioned
A timeless drink perfect for sipping while you get warm by the fire, the Old Fashioned is one of the world’s most popular cocktails. Our tip? It’s best served after a tasty dinner of duck or pork chops.
- 1 ½ oz. Bourbon or Rye whiskey
- 2 dashes Angostura bitters
- 1 sugar cube
- A few dashes of water
Our premixed Old Fashioned cocktail is industry recommended and contains a dash of orange bitters designed to liven up your palette. If you’re more of a rum drinker, swap the whiskey for a traditional Caribbean rum, like Mount Gay, for a light rum cocktail.
10. Ginger Apple Spritz
In a ginger apple spritz, the spiciness of the ginger is balanced with super sweet apples. Swapping ginger beer in for ginger ale gives this non-alcoholic fall drink a prominent flavor. This fall mocktail may be alcoholic-free, but it delivers just as much kick as its alcohol-infused counterparts. Ginger and apples make a great pairing.
- 2 cups fresh apple cider
- 1 cup ginger beer
- 1 cup sparkling water
- 1 medium apple, chopped
There you have it: our top picks for the best fall cocktails. Now, pick out the best glass to use for your drinks, throw on your comfiest jumper and toast to all fall has to offer.
Looking even further ahead to the festive season and in need of some seasonal drink ideas? Discover How To Complete Your Holiday Dinners with NIO Cocktails.