It’s midterm season and it’s fall, so that means lots of alcohol but make it PSL.

This is a full list of cocktails that are a must for fall, and yes, I did prioritize drinking and then consuming these over any essays or midterms this week. It made for a much more enjoyable fall week, but what I’m sure will be a very spooky Halloween season full of failing grades. 

Apple Cider Hot Toddy: 

Hot apple cider is already a fall comfort drink, so adding alcohol simply elevates it. It also makes your apartment smell like apples and spices, so this is truly a multifaceted drink.


  • Apple Cider
  • Honey
  • Brandy (any dark liquor will work well; whiskey is traditional)
  • Cloves
  • Cinnamon Sticks
  • Lemons

Preparation: On a stove top warm your apple cider. Add cloves, cinnamon sticks, and lemon wedges for an extra yummy apple cider. In a mug mix a shot of dark alcohol with a spoonful of honey, and then pour in your warm apple cider. Mix well. 

PSL Beer Float 

Fall in New York means that each day is either summer or winter and whatever temperature it may be, you are never dressed appropriately. This cocktail is equally as indecisive. It’s my alcoholic take on a Pumpkin Spice Latte merged with a root beer float.


  • 1.5 oz of Kahlua
  • 3 scoops of pumpkin ice cream
  • Harpoon Dunkin Pumpkin Beer

Preparation: Add the Kahlua to a glass (a wine glass made this alcoholic kids’ drink feel very classy) and then add as much pumpkin ice cream as you want. Top it off with the Dunkin Pumpkin beer (by itself this beer is an experience).

Pumpkin NoMad 

Based on the Bread and Butternut from the NoMad Cocktail Book which is the only cocktail bible you need (besides this post obviously), this cocktail is definitely the nicest drink on the list. It has my mother’s seal of approval (and enjoyment). If you want to impress someone with a fall themed drink, this is the one to make. It is not very sweet, which already makes it stand out from the others. However, if you do want it to taste slightly sweeter, use a sweet sherry (i.e. Pedro Ximénez San Emilio) or increase the amount of sugar syrup. This drink is a fantastic cocktail that could be and should be made during any season. 

Ingredients (makes one large cocktail or two very small ones):

  • 1 oz of spiced rum
  • 2.25 oz of sherry (I used Amontillado Los Arcos)
  • 0.5 oz of lemon juice
  • 0.5 oz of muscovado syrup (1 part muscovado sugar; 1 part hot water, mix or place over heat until the sugar is dissolved)
  • 1 tbsp of pumpkin pie puree
  • 2 dashes of Angostura bitters

Preparation: Put ice into a cocktail shaker and then add all the ingredients (make the sugar syrup ahead of time). Shake well and then strain into a glass of your choice. Shaken, not stirred; totally the wrong drink, but this is the kind of classiness you are going to feel from this drink. 

Pumpkin Buttered Rum 

I’ve never made buttered rum before, and I was certainly dubious about the mix of butter and hot water. But this drink is incredible. I used a recipe to help me tackle making this new drink and made some updates along the way. I am convinced that this is the recipe for Harry Potter Butter Beer, and with this drink by my side I think I could also do magic. 


  • ½ stick of butter
  • ½ cup of brown sugar
  • 1 tsp of pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 tbsp of pumpkin pie puree
  • Butter Rum
  • Hot water
  • Whipped Cream

Preparation: Mix the butter, brown sugar, spice, and puree together. This would have been a much easier task with a mixer, but I used a fork until it creamed together and that worked fine. Put two spoonfuls of your butter mix into a mug and add 2 oz of butter rum (normal rum would also be fine, but to be clear, not as good). Then pour boiling water over the butter and mix together. Top with whipped cream and orange sprinkles if you have any on hand. I found that the mix made about 3 or 4 drinks.


Apple Cider Mimosa 

Boozy brunch really gets fall-ified with this drink. Apple cider actually made for an excellent orange juice replacement, and the sugar rim made me feel fancy enough to forget that I was drinking alcohol at 10 on a weekday morning. 


  • Apple Cider
  • Champagne
  • Maple Syrup
  • Brown Sugar
  • Pumpkin Pie Spice

Preparation: In a small flat dish add maple syrup, and in another, put brown sugar and a very small amount of pumpkin pie spice (cinnamon would also be yummy). Dip the glass into the maple syrup and then swirl it in the sugar mix to rim your cock… tail glass. Then fill the glass about halfway with apple cider and fill the rest with champagne. I never measure my mimosa proportions, so this step really just depends on how much alcohol you want in your drink. 

Pomegranate and Orange Gin Cocktail 

Admittedly, pomegranate and orange are more leaning into the winter palate. But this drink ended up being surprisingly refreshing in a very summery way, so a fall cocktail it is. This recipe was based on a recipe I found online; if I see gin listed as an ingredient I instantly have to make the drink. 


  • 1 oz of pomegranate juice
  • 1 oz of orange juice (I squeezed an orange because it’s not a lot of juice and one orange can normally make at least 2 oz)
  • 1 tsp of honey
  • 2 oz of gin
  • Sparkling water

Preparation: Put ice in a cocktail shaker with all the ingredients except the sparkling water. Shake well and strain into a glass. Top the drink off with sparkling water. The drink was so light that I would recommend only using a small amount of sparkling water, give it some bubbles but don’t dilute the taste. 

Halloween Shots 

Fall means Halloween, and these are the easiest spooky drinks you can make. Each shot was made with a combination of vodka and some kind of juice. Found a health juice store on Broadway (no, not Pressed), and everything in there could have made any shot Halloween themed. And while yes, I should maybe have just used food coloring, there was a certain pleasure in scanning the grocery aisles looking for violently colored liquids. For the perfect spooky color, you really have to judge as you go to get the right proportion of random fluorescent liquid to vodka, but I found that about one third of a shot glass of juice worked. The juice honestly made the shots easier to put down so maybe this will become a year round thing. Oh, and the spookiest part of these shots is that they were taken in Columbia shot glasses. 

These beautiful cocktails and pictures via Bwog Staff