Bourbon has always been a liquor that I’ve used in cooking. I love the smokey and subtle sweetness it lends. So, when I had a cocktail in mind using cider and cranberry, I knew I had to incorporate bourbon. I couldn’t think of any other flavor that would give the drink that warm yet refreshing taste I was looking for. I did some research on this one. Mixology does not come naturally to me. I can whip up flavors, but I have no idea what drinks are already out there. I found that there is a drink that combines bourbon and cider with a splash of lemon juice. It’s called a Cider Smash. I replaced the lemon juice with cranberry and garnish with thin slices of apple.

Here’s a little fun fact about bourbon…did you know that the interiors of the white oak barrels in which bourbon is aged, are torched and charred before the liquor is added? That char lends to the deep color and the smokey flavor of the final product. Isn’t that neat?

Cranberry Cider Smash

2 ounces bourbon
1 ounce cranberry juice
4 ounces apple cider
1 teaspoon pure maple syrup or honey (or more…to taste)
crushed ice
1 fresh apple, sliced thinly

Special equipment: Cocktail Shaker

Combine the bourbon, cranberry juice, apple cider and maple syrup in the shaker with just a bit of ice. Give it a nice shake then pour into a glass with some additional ice and a few slices of apple.

Cheers!

Makes one drink.

Cranberry Cider Smash - A mix of bourbon and apple cider with a splash of cranberry juice, this festive drink is perfect for the holidays!
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