Autumn. Drinking in the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness

Wine grapes in Montepulciano, Tuscany, September 2015, not long before harvesting.

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness!
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run

Autumn is at least two seasons and several moods. It depends on the day and on how the change from summer takes you. The growing season is coming to an end, but it’s also harvest time; the nights get longer, but then there can be those bright, fresh mornings; there are intimations of winter, though often they’re grey, nondescript and mild, neither here nor there; you have unexpected balmy spells, as if summer had returned; Christmas starts nudging in. We’ve tried to pick a couple of drinks that reflect this, even if our linking is a bit fanciful.

Something old and something new. The Apotheke/Pharmacy: a cocktail revival

While on a nautical cruise for work, Andy Hamilton discovered a new cocktail—the Apotheke (aka the Pharmacy)—that turns out to be an old and forgotten one. He thinks it’s due a revival, and what’s more found its strangely mixed character to be ideal for autumn. Here’s Andy on the Apotheke/Pharmacy (nautical photography included).

Sunset and the haunting sight of a distant tanker.
Sunset and the haunting sight of a distant tanker.

Fruits of darkness and of light. JiJiJi: a weird hybrid wine

Feeling a bit of seasonal ennui, Paul Fishman was talked into trying something new: a bizarrely enjoyable Argentinian Malbec/Pinot Noir blend made using a Beaujolais technique. The mix of dark and light fruits seemed autumnal enough, and it goes superbly with some seasonal food. Here’s Paul on JiJiJi Malbec/Pinot Noir, duck and carbonic maceration.

JiJiJi Malbec/Pinot Noir. Unusual and good.
JiJiJi Malbec/Pinot Noir. Unusual and good.

Andy Hamilton and Paul Fishman (Bristol, September 2015)

Gin in the morningAndy had his first alcoholic drink at eight and has never looked back. He now works as a freelance drunkard and does many booze related things to earn a crust. These include taking people out into the woods and teaching them how to make booze from wild plants, writing about booze in his books, the bestselling Booze for Free, his in-depth treatise on beer, Brewing Britain, and more recently the book he is working on, Wild Booze and Hedgerow Cocktails. He often writes for the Telegraph and occasionally for the Guardian. He’s also been know to help various establishments design their own signature drinks. Andy is known as one of the politest people in the drinks industry, he never swears and is always convivial and never an incompressible drunk. Honest. And he really is the editor at large for Alderman Lushington.

Twitter: @andyrhamilton Website: The Other Andy Hamilton

Fishman-bucketPaul is a freelance writer, editor and all-round ink-slinger; he’s also the managing editor of Alderman Lushington.

Website: Twitter: @fishmandeville



Header poem: from John Keats 1819 Ode to Autumn.