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Rainy Weather Cocktails – The Fresh Toast



It is official, it is autumn.  Time for pumpkin spice, holiday shopping months early, football, and the beginning of cuffing season.  Long work days and wet nights mean you might need a special cocktail (or two) to help get through this time of year.  And here are some great rainy weather cocktails.

Photo by Ozark Drones via Unsplash

Dark and Stormy

What says fall weather more than the classic Dark and Stormy.  Something to match the weather outside but making you happy on the inside!

mix one part of dark rum – the darker, the better – with four parts of ginger beer. Pour over ice and garnish with lime. It’s smooth, spicy, and refreshingly cool.

Long Island Ice Tea

Autumn is all about harvest and bounty, and nothing is more bountiful than the booze in a Long Island Ice Tea.  Perfect for football, long evenings and day drinking. A Long Island Iced Tea is made with equal parts gin, tequila, vodka, rum, and triple sec.  You can add some pizzazz by adding in Coke/Diet Coke, which also serves the purpose of not making it extra strong.

RELATED: 4 Great Whiskeys For A Dinner Party

Blood Orange Margarita

Fall starts us thinking of travel including ski trips and warm destinations.  Get a start with this blood orange margarita. Start by juicing one blood orange and combining the juice with two ounces of silver tequila and a teaspoon of agave nectar or sugar. Combine in a cocktail shaker full of ice, shake for 30 seconds, and then strain. It’s best served in a salt-rimmed glass and garnished with a thin slice of blood orange.

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Bourbon or Whiskey

Similarly, bourbon and whiskey boast specific tasting notes and flavor profiles that pair perfectly with cozying up by the fire, your favorite comfort foods, and staying indoors as you watch the leaves and then snow fall. Serve them with or without ice and enjoy.

Whiskey Sour

A traditional whiskey sour is made with whiskey, lemon juice, sugar, and an egg white. The egg white adds a creamy, rich flavor and a frothy texture to the surface, which is fun to drink. Today, it’s often more common to find bars serving Whiskey Sours without egg white. But if you want to taste the original incarnation of the drink, and put a little protein in your system, give it a try.

When using egg white, you’ll want to perform a “dry shake,” meaning to shake all the ingredients without ice before shaking again with fresh ice. This incorporates the ingredients together while aerating the egg, akin to making a meringue. It creates a fuller-bodied drink with a more luxurious mouthfeel.

The equinox is upon us, so here are some rainy weather cocktails. Hope you “fall” in love with these autumn drinks!

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5 Great Bourbons For Fall





As the day gets shorter and nights chillier, it might be time to put away the rosé, the margaritas, and the other fun summer drinks. As the leaves begin to change, it’s time to shake up your spirits selection with a favorite bourbon. Bourbon is an American Whiskey produced under a specific set of guidelines, and it seems the coziness of it is perfect for autumn.

Like Pina coladas, Cosmos, and Aperol Spritz evoke the feeling of summer, bourbon and whiskey boast specific tasting notes and flavor profiles that pair perfectly with the drop in temperatures.  Holding the perfect drinks while cozying up by the fire with your favorite comfort foods is something bourbon is made to do. And it fits well with traditional fall foods like apple, maples, cinnamon and pumpkin.

Related5 Weird Whiskeys to Challenge Your Ideas About Whiskey

As you pull out your coats, slip on a turtleneck and start thinking about Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas, here are 5 great bourbons for fall.

Wyoming Whiskey Single Barrel Bourbon

Not all the great bourbon comes from Kentucky. Wyoming Whiskey in Kirby, Wyoming, is quietly turning heads with its well-made, well-aged, and well-that’s-delicious whiskeys, including a regular single barrel bourbon release that impresses even the most entrenched craft skeptics. Wyoming Whiskey’s line of wheated bourbons was developed in partnership with Steve Nally of Maker’s Mark, so it’s no surprise they’re so tasty.

Booker’s Bourbon Blue Knights Batch

The Booker’s Bourbon is a yet another crowd pleaser—a 127.4 proof, six-year-old bourbon named after a local group of motorcycle enthusiasts who are all active or retired police officers. It’s spendier than past Booker’s releases, but die-hard fans won’t be disappointed.

Old Forester Statesman

This new limited-edition release from Old Forester commemorates the release of the latest Statesman flick: The Kingsman: The Golden Circle. Indulge your international spy fantasies with this rye-forward bourbon, bottled at a healthy 95 proof.

Early Times Bottled-in-Bond

Early Times’ flagship U.S. release isn’t a bourbon, but earlier this year the 157-year-old brand released a bottled-in-bond bourbon release seemingly designed specifically for cocktails.

Related: Is Commercial Moonshine Really Moonshine

It’s bottled at 100 proof, packaged in a one-liter bottle, and has a sweet, citrus-forward flavor and friendly price point that’s ideal for mixed drinks.

Kentucky Owl Bourbon Batch #7

Debuting outside Kentucky for the very first time this September, this cult favorite brand is known for its small-batch vattings that showcase different flavors every time. Batch #7 combines 11 barrels that are at least 13 years old with four eight- to nine-year old barrels for a whiskey with a sweet entry and spicy finish.

As we wrap ourselves in all things autumn, bourbon does pair well with pumpkin spiced cookies.

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Say Goodbye To Grilling Season With The Ultimate Steak Recipe




Grilling is what we do from Memorial Day to Labor Day.  And who doesn’t love a great smoky steak hot off the grill? But fall has arrived, and a number of grill masters close the lid for the season and wait until spring. But here is a treat, say goodby grilling season with the ultimate steak!

I’m a Texan with rancher roots, who comes with a lot of experience in the grilling arena. But I have also learned tricks from the best chefs over the years. All experience combined, here is my favorite way to get my beef on.


  • 1 Tbsp mustard
  • 2 Tbsp dried Herbs de Provence or Thyme
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
  • 4 fillet mignon steaks


  • Put the mustard, thyme, sugar, salt and pepper in a small bowl and mix to combine. Rub the mixture over the steaks and set aside for 30 minutes to marinate.
  • Preheat barbecue to medium heat.
  • Grilling time: For a 1-inch cut, grill 10 to 12 minutes for medium rare (145 degrees F) or 12 to 15 minutes for medium (160 degrees F).
  • Slice and serve with your favorite side. We like a bit of sauteed greens.  Top with extra salt and cannabutter if desired!  
  • Serves 4.

A few fun facts to chat about while you grill.  79 million Canadian and American grill or eat from a grill during the summer.  Over 5.5% grill every week.

Named one of the 100 Most Creative People in the US by Entertainment Weekly , Frankie captures images for some of the best names in culinary.  Frankie has helped create: The Art of the Bar: Cocktails Based on the Classics;The Model Bakery Cookbook; Miette: Recipes from San Francisco’s Most Charming Pastry Shop; The Green Eggs and Ham Cookbook and The Star Wars Cookbook Series. Follow her on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

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Great Fall Whiskeys – The Fresh Toast




Autumn is around the corner, even if the weather in a lot of the country still feels like midsummer. That means it’s time to reevaluate the whiskey cabinet, pick out some new featured whiskeys, and get started enjoying the coziest time of the year.  Here are some great fall whiskeys to enjoy with shorter night and longer happy hours.

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Stagg Jr.

Don’t have the cash or chutzpah to dive into the collectible bourbon fray this fall? Don’t fret. Let the tickers elbow one another for the chance to spend $850 on a bottle of George T. Stagg and snuggle in with a bottle of lil’ old Stagg Jr. It’s a little younger (and a lot easier to find) than its more grown-up sibling, but Stagg Jr. still offers that irresistible combination of big spice and high proof. Great for cutting the chill.

GlenDronach 18

Longer evenings and cooler temperatures call out for sherry. The GlenDronach Distillery in the Speyside region produces one of Scotland’s great sherried malts, and its 18-year-old “Allardice” expression is just right for autumn. Polished, nutty, and dense as a fruitcake (in the best way possible), this is a classically delicious whisky. While in Scotland earlier this year, I heard rumors from a couple of bartenders that the 18-year-old might be discontinued, so get it while you can.

RELATED: 4 Great Whiskeys For A Dinner Party

Bruichladdich Islay Barley

Fall is all about harvest and bounty, and Bruichladdich Islay Barley is the whisky equivalent of amber waves of grain. Made entirely from Islay-grown barley, this unpeated single malt is rich with cereal intensity, with a creamy mouth feel and delicate finish. If you think Scotch whisky isn’t for you, Islay Barley might change your mind.

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Parker’s Heritage

Fall ‘tis the season for collectible high-end bourbon releases, and the Parker’s Heritage collection from Heaven Hill is always among the best. This year, it’s an 11-year-old bourbon with big, bass-heavy spice notes and plenty of dark caramel. Even sweeter, Heaven Hill is donating $10 from each bottle sold to the ALS foundation in honor of late Distiller Emeritus Parker Beam, who passed away earlier this year.

Weird Whiskeys to Challenge Ideas About Whiskey

Santa Fe Spirits Colkegan Single Malt Whiskey

Made in New Mexico, this American malt whiskey is made from 100% malted barley, 30% of which is smoked over mesquite. It’s smoky and nutty, with a nice richness and a pronounced mineral component to keep things interesting. Line this up with a couple of classic Islay malts in a blind tasting for a bit of fun.

Having these in your liquor cabinet will make autumn a delight!

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