Thursday, September 9, 2010

Autumn Ablazed - my own delicious pumpkin cocktail

My submission for the pumpkin cocktail contest. All pumpkin cocktails recipes carry some version of nutmeg on them. Either sprinkled or grated. I wanted to change that. For my pumpkin is Autumn. Pumpkin reminds me of the feeling of comfort, of enjoyment, of happiness, of life firing in my belly!!. I wanted to have that on a drink. Since I create my own Hell-fire bitters, I put them to the test with the creamy and smooth aftertaste of pumpkins. To round up the flavors, i sensed that i needed a fruity nose to it, but with some refinement, that is why Brandy came to mind. Additionally, Demerara rums have a rich, raw brown sugar flavor that could be the perfect finish to coordinate a rich, amazing drink with just a hint of hot spices.  After playing with amounts and proportions to get the right balance, I decided that this creamy libation needed to be serve over crushed ice to dissolve evenly while sipping it in front of the chimney.

  • 1 1/2 oz Brandy
  • 1/2 oz Dark Rum (1)
  • 1/3 oz Pumpkin Spice Syrup (2)
  • 1/3 oz Pumpkin Schnapps
  • 1 1/3 oz Half and Half (cream/ milk)
  • 1 dash Hell-fire bitters (3)

Shake with Ice in a cocktail shaker and then strain into an Crushed Ice-filled Lowball Glass. Garnish with a Cinnamon stick and then, insert a straw that has been cut to 1-inch above the top of the cup so the nose is forced close to the cinnamon when sipping this Autumn Ablazed.

(1) Any Brown sugar cane rum or Demerara rums works best.
(2) Torani and Monin brands carry Pumpkin Spice Syrup
(3) I recommend doing your own Hell Fire Bitters

A little advice

  • El Dorado rum, Captain Morgan, Mount Gay Rum, Ron Viejo de Caldas, Flor de Caña, Zacapa... any of these Caribbean rums would work just fine.
  • My homemade Pumpkin Spice Syrup is really easy to do. See below for the recipe.
  • My homemade Hellfire bitters recipe is at the end of the blog. 

Pumpkin Spice Syrup 
Simmer in sauce pan: 
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp pre-cooked pumpkin
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp mace

stir until sugar dissolves, Cool slightly, then stir in about a shot of Cognac.Strain using coffee filter.

Hellfire Bitters 
My own recipe - easy to do 
  • 1 jalapeño
  • 2 oz Rum
  • 1 oz water
  • 1 oz coffee

In a small pot, muddle the jalapeño. Add rum and muddle some more. Mix in the coffee and the water; cover on low heat for 10 min. Cool. strain, let sit for 6 hours. Use dropper to pour over drinks.


  1. Thank you for submitting that drink! I really cannot wait to try it. Here's the link to the published submission.
    Cocktails Guide,

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