Fall in New England is arguably one of our most memorable seasons. With the changing of the leaves, the plethora of fall flavors, and of course, fall drink specials, it is a pity it does not last longer... To make the most of this autumn season, here is a compilation of 10 top fall drinks from restaurants and bars all over Greater Boston.
As if the cocktail menu featuring more than 90 options isn't enough (and that's not counting the incredible cocktail encyclopedia that is beverage director Todd Maul's mind), this fall, Clio adds a fall seasonal special, The Hunter:
- sage-infused rum
- lemon honey and bourbon syrup
- sparkling cider
- clarified apple cider (spun out in a centrifuge)
- dash of whiskey
- smoke the inside of the glass with brown oak and cinnamon
Just watching the drink being made is worth it, as the team behind the bar at Clio is so deft and creative. The space is also perfect for any rainy fall day... or sunny late afternoon. If you happen to still be there after 11 p.m. on Friday, or Saturday, Uni's late-night ramen kicks off and you can slurp some of that up with a delicious, pork belly steam bun on the side from chef Tony Messina… now that's a solid autumn evening!
Any cocktail list would be amiss without something off of Kenmore's Eastern Standard. Part of the ICOB trifecta, Eastern Standard has some of Boston's best mixers behind the bar on any given day. This fall season, they will be shaking things up with fresh vinegar syrups infused with different fruits and herbs. To get the idea, check out their Garden Grove:
- Pierre Ferrand 1840 Cognac
- Triple Sec Blackberry/Thyme Shrub
- fresh lemon juice
Other shrubs include watermelon/basil and ginger peach...keep an eye out for them.
Who says everything in fall has to be about apples? Emerald certainly offers something a little different, but altogether green with its Pear Me Not fall cocktail:
- Grey Goose Pear
- honey syrup
- fresh lemon juice
- pear purée
- fresh sage
- served straight up with a sage leaf
Lounge around here for a swanky evening of fun and explore their various secret hallways and corridors... try not getting lost (or do, it's more fun) when going to the restroom and let the flavors of fall settle in with their emerald glassware and green glow.
Finch at the Boxer
Located in Boston's newest boutique hotel, Finch at the Boxer has an impressive collection of fall cocktails. The one that caught my eye is the Pumpkin Old Fashioned — take a dark, amber-colored beverage on any day fall day and add a pumpkin and maple syrup twist and I am sold!
- pumpkin purée
- maple syrup
- Grand Marnier
Hidden on Temple Place in the Theatre District is Boston's gem of a bar, JM Curley, and there is always something new being shaken up by the team behind the bar headed by Kevin Mabry. This month, stop by here for a local and 'Seasonal Collins'. For the fall season, it is being churned out with:
- Greylock Gin
- green apple shrub
- topped with a splash of soda
Hole yourself up at the bar or in a booth for a few of these. Maybe throw in a Dark and Stormy or two and enjoy their complimentary popcorn of the day, or better yet, any of chef Samuel Monsour's daily specials on the Sammy's Seven board.
If you are in the mood for some seasonal wines, you must head to L'Espalier to enjoy some of their Wine Sommelier, Lauren Collins', expertly crafted selection. For the Autumnal months, you will find a collection of heartier robust reds. Hard ciders and local craft brews will also be featured and there is no better way to enjoy these than in their lounge with a good cheese pairing by in-house fromageur, Louis Risoli.
Of course if you are still in the mood for a fall cocktail, L'Espalier will not dissapoint either, hunker down with a St. Geroge's Cider, prepared by their very own, and very in-house tea Sommelier, Cynthia Gold:
- Darjeeling infused rum
- Fresh lime
- Apple Cider
- Ginger Oolong simply syrup
Poe's Rattlesnake Kitchen and Bar
Chef Brian Poe is always coming up with interesting dishes and drinks at his Boston institution on Boylston street. This fall he does not disappoint with the Harvest Margarita:
- Cuervo Gold
- Mcgillicuddy apple schnapps
- fresh apple champagne/ cider mix
For $8, this margarita goes down well when ordered in pairs, or paired perhaps with some of his equally delicious and inspired Mexican dishes.
Conveniently located a couple of doors down from Eastern Standard, The Hawthorne's where you can escape just about any miserable aspects of the fall weather in New England. This autumn season, look for a few hidden treats embedded in their already tantalizing cocktail menu. I can personally vouch for their Georgetown:
- pineapple syrup
- Angostura Bitters
- severd on the rocks with two cherries
Although their Spitfire would probably be the best thing to really give that cold wind a kick in the pants:
- Tequila Cabeza,
- chile-infused Aperol
- cinnamon and grapefruit
One of Back Bay's first seafood restaurants, Turner Fisheries has a surprising and exciting fall beverage menu alongside their strong, classic cocktail list. Enjoy a raw seafood platter or any of their tried and true, all-sustainable seafood dishes prepared by chef de cuisine Jason Bautista. Among their fall cocktail offerings, find (and try), their Cider Bourbon Cocktail:
- apple cider
- rye whiskey ginger infusion
- fresh ginger and lemon
- served up with an apple slice garnish
Across the river in Kendall Square, beverage director Josh Taylor always has something up his sleeve. Head over to enjoy his Hedy Lamarr:
- Bonded Apple Brandy
- Meletti Amaro
- Punt e Mes
- lavender honey syrup
This drink is stirred and served down with no garnish... because why would you need one when you have it all in the glass?
What are you waiting for? Fall is a mercilessly short season in Boston, so drink up!