The Friday Tipple: Clevedale Sunset

Clevedale Sunset

We’ve headed back south, Boozers. Along the miles between Vacationland and the Mason-Dixon Line, the air became heavier, the flower petals exploded in perfume, and we found ourselves yearning for a shady portico. We discovered all this, and more, at Clevedale Historic Inn in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where we were inspired by the stately architecture and formal gardens, along with a great thirst.

When in the South, one feels a necessity to drink whiskey and citrus, but the elegant setting of the Clevedale Inn makes the addition of something sparkling almost another necessity. And so we present you with the Clevedale Sunset, a bubbly sipper touched with a certain Southern languor, perfect for imbibing on the porch as the horizontal shadows lengthen across the lawn and the frogs begin to sing their bedtime lullabies. Lean back, close your eyes, and listen to the whisper of a Carolina breeze.

Clevedale Sunset

We always enjoy the local hooch wherever we go, and several young distilleries are popping up across South Carolina. Dark Corner Distillery of Greenville makes a Carolina bourbon whiskey that we knew would be just right as the base for this cocktail: slightly smoky with just the faintest note of a Carolina pine forest.

6 ounces bourbon

1 fresh orange

chilled Prosecco or sparkling wine

orange bitters (for this we used Fee Brothers West Indian Orange Bitters)

Place the bourbon in a clean glass jar. Cut several long twists of orange peel from the fresh orange and put them in the jar with the bourbon, then cut the orange in half and put one half into the jar as well. Cover and chill thoroughly (you can place in the freezer for one hour or in the refrigerator for up to four hours). Remove orange half and reserve orange twists.

To assemble the drink, pour one ounce of the chilled bourbon into a chilled wine glass and top with four ounces of chilled Prosecco. Yes, there’s a lot of chilling here, but you will be glad of it on a sticky Southern summer evening. Add two dashes of orange bitters and one of the reserved orange twists. Serve immediately.

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