A few weeks ago, I helped teach a cooking class, and one of my responsibilities was to make drinks for everyone. I opted for hot mulled cider and spiced apple tea. The cider was a huge hit! It got me thinking about a nice autumn cocktail. I don’t drink alcohol anymore since it does a number on my tummy. I found, however, an excellent non-alcohol spirit called Aplós.
It is a plant-based, organic, non-alcoholic citrusy spirit infused with 20 mg of broad-spectrum hemp. It is intended to give the same uplifting and calming effects as alcohol, but without the ill effects of alcohol. I don’t know about you, but it sounded like the perfect base for an autumn cocktail recipe!
For the spiced simple syrup:
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup vegan organic cane sugar
- 2 whole star anise
- 2 cinnamon sticks
For the spiced salty sugar rim:
- 1 part cinnamon
- 1 part sugar
- 1/2 part kosher salt (optional, but recommended)
- 2 cups apple cider
- 1 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
- 2 ounces of Aplós, or other alcohol free spirit
- 1 1/2 ounces spiced simple syrup
- San Pellegrino
- Sprigs Mint as garnish
- cinnamon sticks as garnish
- slices apple as garnish
- slices lemon as garnish
- star anise as garnish
To make cinnamon simple syrup:
- Combine ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat.
- Reduce heat to low and let simmer for 5 minutes, or until it begins to thicken.
- Remove from heat, strain anise and cinnamon sticks, and pour syrup into a glass jar to cool.
- For cocktails:
- In a cocktail shaker or glass measuring cup, combine the apple cider, lime juice, Aplós, and simple syrup. Mix well.
- Garnish glasses by rolling the lip of the glass in the simple syrup and carefully rolling in the salty sugar rim mix.
- Add ice to four highball glasses and strain mojitos evenly into each glass. Top with Pellegrino and garnish with apples, arils, and mint leaves.