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    How to Make a Bourbon Apple Cider Cocktail

    This bourbon apple cider cocktail is ideal for sipping around a campfire or snuggling up with a good book and a flannel shirt.

    Combine fresh apple cider with bourbon for a classic fall sipper.

    This bourbon apple cider cocktail is the perfect combination of light and warm. With sweet apple cider, bright lemon juice, and warming bourbon, this cocktail has everything you want as the seasons change.

    Easy Bourbon Apple Cider Cocktail Recipe

    Apple cider is an excellent cold-weather beverage. To maintain the flannel season vibe, I muddle fresh rosemary with sugar and bitters to add freshness and warmth to the cocktail. And don’t forget the cocktail bitters. A dash of Angostura bitters will help to balance out the sweetness.

    • 1 rosemary sprig, plus more for garnish
    • 1 brown sugar cube, or 1 teaspoon turbinado sugar
    • 3 dashes Angostura bitters
    • 2 ounces apple cider
    • 1½ ounces bourbon
    • ½ ounce lemon juice
    • lemon wheel, for garnish

    What You’ll Need

    • Cocktail mixing glass: I prefer to stir many, but not all, whiskey cocktails. Depending on your preference, this can be mixed in a mixing glass or a cocktail shaker!
    • Muddler: A muddler must muddle the sugar, rosemary, and bitters. I prefer to use a wooden or metal muddler with a rubber end. If you don’t have one, a wooden spoon handle will suffice.
    • A cocktail strainer is one of the most useful tools for making cocktails at home. It easily fits onto the cocktail shaker’s cup and catches bits of herbs and produce.

    Step 1: Muddle the rosemary and sugar together.

    Muddle rosemary, sugar, and bitters in a cocktail mixing glass until the herbs are fragrant and the sugar begins to dissolve.

    Step 2: Combine the remaining ingredients.

    Stir in the apple cider, bourbon, and lemon juice until the sugar is dissolved. Fresh citrus juice tastes best in any cocktail, so skip the bottled stuff.

    Step 3: Shake well to chill.

    Fill the glass halfway with ice and stir for 30 seconds until thoroughly chilled.

    Step 3: strain and garnish

    Fill a rocks glass halfway with ice. Pour the cocktail over ice in a strainer over a mixing glass. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary and a lemon wheel.

    Tips for Making This Cocktail

    What spices can I add to this cocktail?

    Check out this bourbon apple cider cocktail version if you want a cocktail with warming spices. Then, you must add nutmeg, cardamom, and cinnamon sticks to finish it!

    What bourbon goes best with apple cider?

    As I always say, the best bourbon is one you enjoy drinking on its own!

    If you want more direction, go for a bourbon in the middle of the price range. You don’t want to use overpriced bourbon in any mixed drink; save it for serving neat or on the rocks. Similarly, don’t use anything too cheap or bottom shelf, or you’ll end up with a drink that burns rather than goes down smoothly.

    I prefer Kentucky bourbon, but try rye with notes of warm spices for a fall twist.

    What’s the difference between bourbon and whiskey?

    This is a frequently asked question because many are unsure of the distinction between bourbon and whiskey. First, remember that not all bourbon is whiskey, and not all whiskey is bourbon. Whiskey is a grain-based spirit that is fermented and aged in wood barrels. It is distilled worldwide and comes in wide varieties, including Scotch, Irish, and American whiskey.

    Bourbon is the most well-known American whiskey. However, a whiskey, like champagne, must meet several criteria to be labeled as bourbon. First, it must be distilled in the United States and include at least 51% corn mash.

    Contrary to popular belief, bourbon should not be produced in Kentucky. A large portion of bourbon comes from Kentucky, but it does not have to come from Kentucky to be called bourbon. However, the spirit must be distilled and aged in Kentucky to be labeled Kentucky bourbon.

    Learn more: How to Make Watermelon Agua Fresca