Our other holiday cocktail is much less flamboyant than the red hot ale, but no less delicious. Inspired by the flavors of the traditional warm Christmas apple punch wassail, Nick Hearin of Restaurant Eugene in Atlanta shares his colder, modern take. The choice of gin is important, he says, for its strong coriander and cinnamon characteristics, which give the drink its spices.
1 ½ ounces Corsair Gin
½ ounce apple gastrique (recipe below)
½ ounce lime juice
Shake all ingredients with ice, strain, and serve in chilled cognac glass, if you have one.
2 pink lady apples, sliced with skin on
1 lime, sliced with skin on
2 cups water
½ cup sugar
6 ounces cider vinegar
Bring everything except vinegar to a boil in a heavy pot, and turn down to a simmer, until it reduces to to a syrupy thickness, about 25 minutes. Stir in the vinegar, which will loosen it back up, and simmer five minutes more. Let it cool and strain.
Francis Lam is Features Editor at Gilt Taste, provides color commentary for the Cooking Channel show Food(ography), and tweets at @francis_lam.