Washington Apple

Difford's Guide
Discerning Drinkers (1 rating)

Serve in an

Old-fashioned glass

Photographed in an

UB Koto Old Fashioned 30cl

Garnish:

Apple wedge on rim or float dehydrated red-skinned apple slice

How to make:

STIR (or shake) all ingredients with ice and strain into ice-filled glass (preferably over a large cube or chunk of block ice).

1 1/2 fl oz Canadian blended whisky
1 fl oz Sour apple liqueur
1 fl oz Cranberry juice (sweetened)
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Read about cocktail measures and measuring.

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Difford’s Guide to Cocktails Book 17th Edition

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Easy Jigger

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Review:

Classically equal parts but better with a splash more whisky, this is an easy-to-like, fruity, juicy crowd-pleasing Old Fashioned-style late-night sipper.

History:

There are over 30 varieties of apple grown in Washington state with by far the majority of them being red-skinned. Established in the late 1880s, Washington's apple orchards nestle in the eastern foothills of the Cascade Mountains, at elevations from 500 to 3,000 feet above sea level.

Apples are big business in Washington with some apple orchards covering 5,000 acres and employing 300 farm workers. Some 40,000 pickers are employed during harvest season across the state.

Urban myth has it, this cocktail was created in the late-1980s after pests decimated much of Washington state's apple orchards leading to mountains of unsellable apples. Seeing this as an opportunity, an entrepreneur named Christof Guycoogan fermented and distilled the spoilt apples to make apple liqueur, which he added to his favourited tipple of Canadian whisky with a splash of cranberry juice.

Turns out, one Randy Woodward has written a whole book about this cocktail, titled Washington Apple Drink and self-published in 2021.

An apple a day, keeps the doctor away" - this may be true in most cases but not in this one. Drinking in moderation is the best way to enjoy a good drink like Washington Apple. The Washington Apple cocktail or drink is a delightful cocktail that incorporates the taste of apples (usually with sour apple pucker) and the tangy flavor of cranberry juice resulting in a sweet and sour treat that can easily become a favorite. Though it is mostly in the form of a cocktail, the Washington Apple can also be served on the rocks or as a shot. It is like the adult version of an apple juice from a carton but only boozy, and fancier. Before learning the recipe, you need to learn how this awesome drink came to be. It's actually an interesting story. In the 1980s, there was a catastrophe that struck in Washington and affected the most in-demand apples. Due to the infamous Nigerian "Naguyuc" bug, a nasty crop failure occurred and along with it, a total loss on the farmers' part. Many have abandoned their orchards to look for other prospects in other fruits, except for one man named Christof Guycoogan who was a carpenter. After a day's work, he would enjoy a nice glass of his favorite shot that consisted of Canadian whiskey and a splash of cranberry juice. One night, after he finished work, he stopped by at a local bar and got his favorite drink. And then, suddenly, out of nowhere, still bearing the drink in his hand, he tripped into a pile of rotten apples and splashed juice on everything including his drink. He took a taste and had a moment of enlightenment. He thought the taste was divine and he started to visit the abandoned orchards to gather more rotten apple juice. He then fermented the juice into a fine apple liqueur and mixed it with the whiskey and cranberry juice that resulted in an amazing concoction, which is now famously known as the Washington Apple cocktail.

Randy Woodward, Washington Apple Drink, 2023

Nutrition:

One serving of Washington Apple contains 175 calories.

Alcohol content:

  • 1.3 standard drinks
  • 17.28% alc./vol. (34.56° proof)
  • 18.1 grams of pure alcohol
Difford's Guide remains free-to-use thanks to the support of the brands in green above. Values stated for alcohol and calorie content, and number of drinks an ingredient makes should be considered approximate.

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Difford’s Guide to Cocktails Book 17th Edition image

Difford’s Guide to Cocktails Book 17th Edition

Perhaps the world's biggest cocktail book! Certainly, our biggest yet, 624 pages, 6cm (2.3inch) thick and weighing 2.25kg (5lb). Our Seventeenth Edition

Buy it here
Easy Jigger image

Easy Jigger

The Easy Jigger® is a measure designed for use when making cocktails, primarily in the home but also by professional bartenders. It has a unique design

Buy it here
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