I’m a huge fan of developing signature cocktails for holidays and parties! In fact, I’ve developed a little bit of a reputation amongst friends . . . “what is Amy going to come up with next?” It’s gone from a little hobby to a full blown challenge! One that I enjoy and am ready to take on, especially when it comes to mixed drinks.
With Friendsgiving coming up in three weeks, it’s been my challenge to create a signature beverage for the evening, and I did it: a Salted Caramel Apple Pie Cocktail! I used just a few ingredients, and one of them was Great America: a delicious malt specialty drink that comes in awesome flavors, perfect for celebrations.
Great America is brewed in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains not too far from me in NC. It’s available in seven flavors at 6%, 12%, and 14% ABVs, depending on your fancy. I went with the Apple Pie flavor for this recipe in 14% . . . but it also comes in Carolina Clear, Lemonade, Peach, Strawberry, Watermelon, and Red, White & Blueberry. It’s GOOD! Perfect for drinking straight (even out of the mason jar!) and mixing.
Here’s how I made my Salted Caramel Apple Pie Cocktail.
- Great America Apple Pie Malt Specialty
- Apple cider
- Salted caramel vodka
- Handful of ice
- 12 oz. glass
- Swizzle stick
- 1 oz shot glass
- Place a handful of ice in a glass.
- Add 1 oz of salted caramel vodka.
- Pour apple cider until glass is about 2/3 full.
- Add Great America Apple Pie Malt Specialty to fill the glass.
- Stir with the swizzle stick.
Optional: if you don’t like ice in your cocktails, add 1 oz vodka, 7 oz apple cider, and 4 oz Great America to a shaker with ice. Shake and pour.
Your beverage will be the most amazing caramel color – perfect for Thanksgiving or other fall parties! My apple pie cocktail has such a tasty, crisp fruit flavor with a hint of salted caramel. This drink is rich and delicious.
Are you looking to be your own mixologist to impress your friends? I’m warning you that it’s responsibility, but one that’s really fun! Here are my tips:
- Learn the basic tools. What is a shaker – what is a jigger? Buy a basic bar set and familiarize yourself with the tools so you know how to use them.
- Master basic techniques. With eggs, fruit juices, or cream you should shake – with fresh herbs you’ll want to use the muddler first. You don’t need to be a bartender per se, but you should know some basic bartending techniques. There are a few good books on that here.
- Experiment. Try mixing various flavors together and expect to have a few failures. It’s totally fine! I like to start with a liquor, a mixer, and a juice or soda if all else fails. As you become more confident, you can think outside the box.
- Get good glasses. Because presentation is everything.