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9 Cocktails Making You Glad Fall Is Here

LAS VEGAS (MainStreet) -- Fall is here and mixologists across the country are crafting seasonal cocktails and stirring up rare ingredients to heighten your taste buds. TravelsinTaste sought some of the most creative cocktails from around the country and brings them to you here.

In Newport, R.I., the Vanderbilt Grace has three new seasonal cocktails showcasing apples and pears: The Fall in Grace is a gin-based cocktail with maple syrup, fresh pear half, two lemon wedges and half a cinnamon stick for decoration; the Apples & Pears mixes Absolute Orient Apple, pear juice, vanilla syrup, lime juice bitters and some hard cider for that special kick; the Big Apple combines tequila with agave nectar, fresh lime juice, pink grapefruit juice domaine de canton, apple juice, a bit of sugar and cinnamon.

At The Chanler at Cliff Walk in Newport, R.I., you can sip on the signature Spiced Pear Martini while taking in the incredible views of the Atlantic. Ideal for fall or winter, the cocktail is made of Absolut Pear Vodka, Disaronno, pear nectar and a squire of lemon and dash of cinnamon.

In Arizona, L'Auberge de Sedona creates seasonal, cask-conditioned cocktails that are barrel aged on property. Their fall drink is an Orange Rum consisting of Pyrat XO rum and Patron Citronage liquor aged for two months in a rum barrel for Tuthilltown Spirits in upstate New York. It is shaken over ice and served in a cocktail glass with a flaming orange zest garnish.

The Grant Grill, in the U.S. Grant Hotel in San Diego, features the Smashing Pumpkin Martini on its fall menu. Ingredients include pumpkin- and star anise-infused 10 Cane Rum, Grand Marnier, St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram, saffron syrup, cardamom bitters and fresh meyer lemon. The festive beverage is presented in a glass, garnished with spicy sugar around the rim and a wooden pumpkin-like ornament (a putka pod) in each drink.

Sage in the Aria Resort & Casino in Las Vegas has introduced a dozen craft cocktails, including such exotic ingredients as gin-compressed blueberries and elderflower dust to complement chef Shawn McClain's aromatic seasonal cuisine. The Blue Velvet is a frothy blueberry delight made with Hangar One Wild Maine Blueberry Vodka, Rothman & Winter Crème de Violette, simple syrup, Angostura aromatic bitters, fresh blueberries, lime juice, a touch of egg white and, for an effervescent kick, a splash of sparkling Brachetto/Moscato.

The beverage professionals at The Mirage have crafted cocktails for National Bourbon Month, which is in full swing. Specialties include the Gold Rush, a unique mix of Knob Creek Mirage Single Barrel Bourbon, Domaine de Canton ginger liqueur, simple syrup, fresh lemon juice and Angostura aromatic bitters, garnished with an apple-ginger fruit chip; and the Smash Bill, concocted with Knob Creek Mirage Single Barrel Bourbon, fresh lime juice, fresh mint leaves, simple syrup, strawberry puree, lemon-lime soda and a strawberry garnish.

Looking for a perfect pairing of small bites while enjoying some libations? Rick Moonen's rm seafood has created a happy hour menu with delectable wine pairings such as The Class Act, which includes a half-ounce of Spanish Osetra caviar served with potato waffle and traditional garnishes and two glasses of Nicolas Feuillatte champagne; and the Aphrodisiac, which features a dozen oysters on the half shell and two glasses of Juve & Camps Brut and Rose cava. Guests also can enjoy specialty handcrafted cocktails created by award-winning lead barman J.R. Starku, such as the Tangerine Honey, made with tangerine vodka, Aperol, honey and lemon; and My Friend Jenny, which combines Corazon Tequila, St. Germain, fresh-pressed pineapple, Bittermans, tiki bitters, lime, orgeat and mint.

Cheers to you and your favorite fall cocktail.

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