À La Mode

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Cocktail History

The À La Mode is a modern cocktail that was created by Karin Stanley at Dutch Kills in New York City, New York. It’s reminiscent of a dessert for which it’s named called pie à la mode, which translates literally to “fashionable pie” and consists of the pastry served with vanilla ice cream. The drink recreates this delicious combination with several ingredients, including bourbon, apple cider, sweetened whipped cream, and Licor 43, a unique Spanish liqueur that adds vanilla to the mix.

Cocktail Ingredients

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Bourbon: This is a type of whiskey made in the United States with at least 51% corn, grains, malted barley, and water. We used Cedar Ridge Distillery Single Barrel Bourbon because it’s a high-proof spirit that’s great for mixing in cocktails. For a low-proof version of this drink, try Spiritless Kentucky 74 Non-Alcoholic Bourbon Whiskey in place of the whiskey.

Licor 43: This is a liqueur made in Spain with a secret blend of forty-three ingredients, including spices, herbs, roots, citrus, sugar, and alcohol.

Apple Cider: This is a beverage made with freshly pressed apple juice and baking spices. We used The Glass Orchard Apple Cider because it’s fresh, delicious, and made locally to us.

Heavy Cream: This is a thick, high-fat milk product. We used use half & half instead of heavy cream because it’s lower in calories. For a dairy-free version of this drink, try Silk Dairy-Free Heavy Whipping Cream Alternative in place of the cream.

Demerara Syrup: This is a sweetener made with Demerara sugar and water. We made ours at home using Alex’s stovetop recipe.

Grated Nutmeg: This is a spice made from the seed of a nutmeg tree. We used whole nutmeg from the bulk section at our local grocery store.

Bartending Tools

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following bar tools:

Boston Shaker: This is used to shake ingredients. We used the Boston shaker from the A Bar Above 14-Piece Silver Bar Set.

Hawthorne Strainer: This is used to strain out ice and solid ingredients after the cocktail is shaken. We used the A Bar Above Hawthorne Strainer.

Jigger: This is used to measure and pour ingredients. We used the Japanese jigger from the A Bar Above 14-Piece Silver Bar Set.

Saucepan: This is used to warm the ingredients. We used the Cuisinart 3-Quart Stainless Steel Saucepan with Cover.

Bar Spoon: This is used to stir ingredients. We used the Barfly Stainless Steel Teardrop Bar Spoon.

Grater: This is used to grate spices or citrus peel. We used the OXO Good Grips Grater.

Tasting Notes

The À La Mode features nutmeg aromas and a mouthful of cool, sweet whipped cream that immediately precedes the sharp cinnamon flavor of hot apple cider. The cider’s taste is then accented with bourbon’s bite plus the vanilla and baking spice note of Licor 43, which is most prominent in the aftertaste and leaves behind a dessert-like quality in the throat.

Our Opinion of This Cocktail Recipe: We both thought the drink was incredible with its combination of sweet apple, tingling baking spices, and cooling vanilla. The À La Mode is truly a fabulous alternative to dessert, especially since it avoids the all-too-common trend of dessert drinks being heavy and cream-based.

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Which of our palates is yours most like?
Find out if your palate is most similar to Alex’s or Kendall’s by answering five questions.

Take Our Quiz →

Alex’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
“As I figured it would be, this drink was delicious and gave us a nice chance to use our bottle of Licor 43. The liqueur gives the drink a slight vanilla note, which sets it apart from any other ciders, especially with the cask-strength bourbon we used giving it some effervescence and backbone. The homemade whipped cream turned out great too thanks to the Demerara syrup! This is definitely one that I would make again.”

Kendall’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
“We experienced a couple of firsts when making this recipe: our first hot apple cider cocktail and our first time making homemade whipped cream. Although somewhat of a labor of love to make compared to shaken or stirred cocktails, this is a boozy apple cider that should absolutely be on your list of drinks to try in the fall or winter when fresh apple cider is still available from local orchards. The bourbon, Liquor 43, and cider are a delicious mixture, and the whipped cream and nutmeg combo on top takes it to a divine new level.”

Recipe

This cocktail recipe was adapted from Winter Drinks: 70 Essential Cold-Weather Cocktails by the editors of PUNCH.

Sale
Winter Drinks: 70 Essential Cold-Weather Cocktails
Winter Drinks: 70 Essential Cold-Weather Cocktails
Hardcover Book; Editors of PUNCH (Author); English (Publication Language); 160 Pages – 10/02/2018 (Publication Date) – Ten Speed Press (Publisher)
$14.58 Amazon Prime

AuthorWinter Drinks

Yields1 ServingPrep Time15 mins

Ingredients
 2 oz Bourbon
 ½ oz Licor 43
 5 oz Apple Cider
 2 oz Heavy Cream
 Grated Nutmeg

Method
1

Add heavy cream, Demerara syrup, and the coil of a Hawthorne strainer to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-15 seconds to make whipped cream.

3

Add bourbon, apple cider, and Liquor 43 to a saucepan.

4

Heat for 8-10 minutes until steaming.

5

Pour into a mug.

6

Garnish with whipped cream and grated nutmeg.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 2 oz Bourbon
 ½ oz Licor 43
 5 oz Apple Cider
 2 oz Heavy Cream
 Grated Nutmeg

Directions

Method
1

Add heavy cream, Demerara syrup, and the coil of a Hawthorne strainer to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-15 seconds to make whipped cream.

3

Add bourbon, apple cider, and Liquor 43 to a saucepan.

4

Heat for 8-10 minutes until steaming.

5

Pour into a mug.

6

Garnish with whipped cream and grated nutmeg.

À La Mode

Make It a Mocktail: Use Spiritless Kentucky 74 Non-Alcoholic Bourbon Whiskey in place of the whiskey to try a low-proof version of this drink.

Shop Glassware & Tools

Find collections of cocktail glassware and bartending tools we recommend for your home bar in our Amazon shop.

Libbey Cavana Tall Mug, 16.4-ounce, Set of 4
Libbey Cavana Tall Mug, 16.4-ounce, Set of 4
Includes 4, 16.4-ounce glass coffee mugs (6-inch height by 3.5-inch diameter); Classic tapered shape complements your tabletop
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UMEIED Iced Coffee Glass Cup with Handles, 10 oz Irish Coffee Mugs, 6-piece Glass Mug Set for tea and espresso Father's Day Gift
UMEIED Iced Coffee Glass Cup with Handles, 10 oz Irish Coffee Mugs, 6-piece Glass Mug Set for tea and espresso Father’s Day Gift
SET SIZE: 6, each holds 10 oz iced coffee, baileys Irish cream liquor, latte, cappuccinos.
$28.99 Amazon Prime
NEW OXO Good Grips Grater, Stainless Steel, Black
NEW OXO Good Grips Grater, Stainless Steel, Black
Sharp, bi-directional, stainless steel grating surface for fast, easy grating; Non-slip foot provides control while grating
$15.42 Amazon Prime

More Apple Cider Cocktails

If you like this apple cider-flavored cocktail recipe, here are a few others we’ve tried that you may enjoy:

Stone Fence Cocktail Recipe

Stone Fence: A bourbon cocktail made with apple cider, Angostura Aromatic bitters, and mint

Mott & Mulberry Cocktail Recipe

Mott & Mulberry: A rye cocktail made with Luxardo Amaro Abano, apple cider, lemon juice, Demerara syrup, and apple slices

Flannel Shirt Cocktail Recipe

Flannel Shirt: A Scotch cocktail made with apple cider, Amaro Averna, lemon juice, simple syrup, St. Elizabeth’s Allspice Dram, Angostura Aromatic Bitters, and an orange peel

Spiced Pumpkin Punch Cocktail Recipe

Spiced Pumpkin Punch: A gin cocktail made with apple cider, pumpkin purée, honey syrup, lemon juice, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon sticks

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