Saturday, October 22, 2011


i know it's officially been fall for awhile now, but somehow late october is when fall starts seeming real to me. i think partly that's because in texas it's generally ridiculous-hot until then. here in portland, it's been pretty cool for awhile, but over the last couple of weeks the trees have started getting really colorful and the smell of woodsmoke is in the air. that's how you know.

fall has always been my favorite season. in texas, it means you lived through another summer (no small feat). in portland, it means scarves, boots, and brisk walks where you crunch through leaves and can see your breath. then when you get home, you can drink this to warm up!

this drink has a wealth of classic fall flavor - the sweet pear, spicy ginger, and, uh, lemony lemon combine with bourbon to make the perfect pick-me-up après-hike. or après-thrift-shopping. or après-whatever-you-like-to-do-on-a-saturday.

plus, you can make a batch ahead of time and then if people drop by unexpectedly, you can nonchalantly be like, "oh, would you like a fancy cocktail? i just whipped this up, no biggie." and they will be all, "wow, you are the fanciest!" and you will smile demurely and pass the cheese straws.

anyway. ginger:
you definitely want some fresh ginger for this. i use a spoon to scrape the papery skin off and then just slice it up (probably not with the spoon, unless it is one of those weird grapefruit ones). it doesn't really matter how thick they are, but think coins, rather than chunks.

i leave the skin on the pear and slice it from the top, also into coins. but you can totes slice it into wedges or whatever. i just think the extra surface area of the coins makes it easier to get it infused into the bourbon (yeah, that's where this is going). but follow your bliss.

then just put the pear and ginger into a thingy, add some strips of lemon rind (you can use a vegetable peeler or knife - just avoid the white pith part) smash them a few times with a wooden spoon to get the oils and whatever started, and add some bourbon.

i ended up using about a cup or so of bourbon, one small pear, maybe an inch and a half or two inches of a thinnish ginger root, and about 1/4 or 1/3 of a lemon's rind. then just cover it and let it sit for awhile. it doesn't have to be too long, but i would leave it for at least a few hours. overnight would be good as well.

then you can strain it, put some in a glass, maybe add some lemon juice if you aren't a fan of the sweetz, top it off with ginger ale or (preferably) ginger beer (it's stronger and much more gingery) and ice, and add a sliver of pear if you want to feel super-fancy. you could also use rye or another kind of whiskey or maybe even dark rum. hooray for fall!

*ingredients* for a number of drinks (4? 6? it depends on how much bourbon you want in yours)
1 small ripe pear
1 1/2-2 inches of ginger root, cut in coins
peel from 1/4-1/3 lemon
1 cup (+/-) bourbon
ginger ale/ginger beer
lemon juice, to taste


  1. This sounds so dang good.
    Make and drink it soon will I.
    Thank you good Leela.

  2. you should do that now!
    it is pretty tasty-ish
    i drank two last night.