After summer’s heat, long days, parties and weddings, many of us are ready to welcome a chill, throw on sweaters and relish a moment to just sit down. Well, not too calmly, just not as rowdy as the beach bars where we clamored for sweaty beers and margaritas. Apples hang lower and ripe, ready for us to trade in trips to the beach to a jaunt up 44, 146 and 6 toward the orchards. Cooler weather brings us the chance to sit and sip drinks — stirred more than shaken, slightly boozy and with some notion of internal musings.
I had such the inspiration during a cool evening when opening a bottle of Pommeau, a delicious creation from Normandy using an apple brandy base (yes, home of Calvados) and blending in fresher-pressed apple juices and spices. If you’ve not tried a Pommeau, put down your boring cider and head to the store. Because you really should make this drink.
What: School Night Musings
2.5 oz Pommeau du Normandie
1 oz Bourbon (I used Hirsch, but use any lovely bold bourbon you like, or if you go for spice, rye!)
2 dashes Black Walnut Bitters
3 Apple* Slices
Put two apple slices and the bourbon in a glass. Muddle. Pour the Pommeau over. Add ice and stir for a minute. Strain into a lowball with a large ice cube. Dash 2-3 walnut bitters on that last apple slice and float it, dashes down so they soak into the drink. This is one to sip, as the flavors get better the longer you hold the glass.
*This drink takes your concern of what to do with those freshly picked apples beyond making applesauce. But sometimes you want to hold onto summer, and in that case, this goes equally well using peach brandy, peaches and peach bitters.