Seasonal trend changes aren't just limited to food and clothing, and alcohol often doesn't get much of the focus around fall. We've got you covered with all the info you need to keep on track with your spirits this season.
If you’ve been a closeted scotch whore for many years, this is your year to rejoice. There’s been a spike in whisky appreciation en masse, meaning the choice of spirits easily available has also increased to meet this demand. Basic economics.
Recent products such as Lot No. 40, Alberta premium dark horse and Crown Royal Black, along with some crucial product placement on popular TV shows has also been bringing Canadian whisky back worldwide, shifting back the focus from Kentucky whisky.
Try out Whisky Café (5800 St Laurent) to feed your inner scotch fiend, they hold a choice of over 150 scotch whiskys, tasting a la carte and a pretty sweet happy hour.
Brands like Absolut and Malibu have been experimenting with mixing alcohols that weren’t available premixed before, like Absolut Tune (vodka and sparkling wine), Malibu Red (Rum and Tequila), Comic Adam Carolla’s Mangria (vodka and wine), Courvoisier Gold (cognac and sparkling wine), Kahlua Midnight (rum and Kahlua) and 20 Grand Vodka (vodka infused with cognac). Although these bottles are marketed mostly at clubs, snagging yourself one for your next Saturday night would be more economical, but also a fun new flavour mix you haven’t tried already.
Even though the name sounds pretty similar to the hallucinogenic drug mescaline that is romanticized in many classic novels and film, the two products are hugely different, unfortunately. Distilled from the maguey plant native to Mexico, Mezcal has a strong smokey flavour and is usually drunk straight. Mexico exports to North America have been growing over the past years, as Mezcal drinks have become a trend. In fact, you can find over 50 brands of the product, with many mescal-dedicated bars popping up internationally.
Le Lab (1351 rue Rachel est) has some great Mezcal creations to try this fall, such as the El Azul Negroni and the Tinieblo Old Fashioned.
Tequila Brunch: The Paloma
There’s only a tiny selection of drinks that are socially acceptable in the wee hours before noon, but sometimes you just want to follow hair-of-the-dog logic. Other times you just want to balance your coffee high with a cocktail down. Either way, your selection is no longer limited to a mimosa or the Canadian favourite, Bloody Caesar. The Paloma puts a brunchtime twist on tequila as it combines it with grapefruit juice and club soda for refreshing deliciousness.
1 lime wedge
Kosher salt (optional)
2 ounces blanco tequila
1 ounce fresh grapefruit juice
3/4 ounce fresh lime juice
1/2 ounce Simple Syrup
1 ounce chilled club soda
1 lime wedge, for garnish
Moisten the outer rim of a highball glass with a lime wedge and coat lightly with salt. Fill the glass with ice. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice, then add the tequila, grapefruit and lime juices and simple syrup; shake well. Strain into the glass, stir in club soda , and garnish with a lime wedge.
For years Captain Morgan Spiced has been the go-to for this niche taste, but no more. Newer rums such as The Kraken, Cruzan 9, Bacardi Oakheart have encouraged mixologists to pay more attention to this ingredient to make it a more visible presence on drink menus. Plus you get say cooler things like 'release the Kraken!'
Bar and Kitchen Overlap
More and more, bar and kitchen ingredients have been swapping spots, and vegetables have been making their way into cocktails. While this trend doesn’t sound the most appealing to me, it definitely is a way to drink your vegetables and make them go down way better. Try this carrot colada to make up your own mind:
1 oz white rum
1 ½ oz coconut water
1 oz coconut rum
1 oz carrot juice
1 oz orange juice
1 or 2 halved baby carrots (garnish)
Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add all ingredients except garnish, shake well. Strain into ice-filled highball glass and garnish with halved baby carrots.
Trends change constantly, but some classics just can’t be benched, and for us the Negroni is one of them. Simple to make and the perfect mix of sweet and bitter, this cocktail is maybe the most soothing of all drinks when you want that well-balanced taste without giving it much thought. Here’s how to make your own:
1 oz gin
1 oz sweet vermouth
1 oz Campari
slice of orange
Pour gin, vermouth and Campari into a chilled Old Fashioned glass over ice; stir well and garnish with orange.
These are the top cocktails trending right now, but did we miss any? Know of a bar that's serving out some of these awesome alcoholic creations? Tell us so in the comments below