Jump up and down if you love honeycrisp apple season!
Jump up and down if you love honeycrisp apple cocktail season.
I’m basically doing cartwheels.
It’s no secret that I wait the entire year for honeycrisp apples. What is it about them that is just so… crisp? So delicious? So… apple-ish?
Max eats an apple sprinkled with cinnamon every single day and I was so excited to introduce him to honeycrisps. He loves ‘em too and said they taste like the perfect apple. First, I was like, um, are you three or 23 years old?
Because they DO taste like the perfect apple.
I don’t know what it is about the orange crush, aside from the fact that it’s just so super refreshing. The soda in the drink (you should definitely use a lemon lime one!) gives it even more of a boost with some light citrus flavor. And it’s SO bubbly.
It’s just so crazy because I never gravitate towards orange things. Like, it might be the last flavor I’d choose on a list of flavors (beside cranberry?) – that’s how little I’m into orange. So it blows my mind that it’s the drink I’ve loved the most in the last few months.
I knew instantly I would want to create a fall version. I considered apple cider, but that felt like a totally different drink. The orange crush uses freshly squeezed orange juice, so I knew that I needed some fresh apple juice! Or, at least my take on fresh apple juice.
We made some honeycrisp juice and this is how it comes together:
Honeycrisp syrup. I loooove this stuff and you guys love it too! I’ve used this in cocktails for the last few years and it’s awesome.
Honeycrisp juice. It may be slightly thicker like a puree, but it works! And tastes like heaven.
Vodka! Of course.
Ginger beer or ginger ale. I tried it with the lemon lime version and it overpowered the apple too much. Since it’s not necessarily hot in the fall, I didn’t think the drink had to be overly “refreshing” if you know what I mean. I kind of wanted it to have more of a comfort vibe. Use ginger beer if you want a little bite, or ginger ale if you like it more mild.
THIS MAKES ME SO HAPPY!
It still does come off as a refreshing drink because it’s so icy and cold. But it’s full of major apple flavor, without being apple cider-y. You know? And without being like that fake green apple flavor that you can find in neon green cocktails.
Seriously tastes like one giant honeycrisp apple. Well, one giant SPIKED honeycrisp apple.
- 2 large honeycrisp apples peeled and diced
- 1/4 cup water
- 3 ounces honeycrisp juice
- 1 to 2 ounces honey crisp syrup
- 2 ounces vodka
- 3 ounces ginger beer or ginger ale
- apple slices for garnish
- a sprinkle of cinnamon on top
Note: of course you can use regular old apple juice for this. Or apple cider! If you use either, you may need to adjust the amount of honeycrisp syrup. Go based on your own taste preference!
You can make all of this ahead of time!
Place the apples and water in a saucepan and heat over medium heat. Cook until the mixture is simmering and the apple is tender and begins to break down. Transfer the mixture to a blender or food processor and puree until smooth and blended. Strain over a fine mesh sieve into a measuring cup. This gives you the honeycrisp "juice." Reserve a few ounces (about 3 ounces for 1 drink) and set it aside.
The remaining amount of honeycrisp juice you have is how much sugar you need. If you have 1/2 cup of juice left, use 1/2 cup sugar. Equal parts. Place both the honeycrisp juice and the sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk constantly until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is simmering. Remove from the heat and let cool completely. Store this in a sealed container in the fridge and it will last great!
Fill a glass with crushed ice. Pour the honeycrisp juice, syrup and vodka in to the glass. Give it a gentle stir. Top it off with the ginger beer or ginger ale, an apple slice and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Serve!
You can totally cinnamon-sugar the rim too and be my BFF forever.