It’s that time of year—when the harvest moon hums in the evening sky like restless crickets near a steady stream. While fall sparks new interests and hobbies, the season’s arrival also inspires richer, carb-heavy dishes...and cocktails that have a bit of heat.
Most year's we’re all trying to replicate mom’s famous Apple Brown Betty or dad’s legendary Moscow Mule, but maybe it’s time to bring something new to the harvest table! With Pinterest boards full of sweet and savory fall dishes, the autumn cocktail department is a necessary addition.
The sweet southern folks at Firefly Spirits is a quaint distillery in North Charleston, known for their Sweet Tea Vodka—and they have a few new autumnal brews on tap.
While their infamous Sweet Tea Vodka is irresistible, Firefly has other hallmark products, like Firefly Flavored Vodka, Firefly Vodka, and their special Firefly Moonshine.
The friendly founders of Firefly, Jim Irvin and Scott Newitt, were gracious enough to share their new seasonal cocktails with Good Grit Magazine.
Before getting to the brews, Scott Newitt was able to give readers insight on everything trending in the spirit industry, as well as tips on how-to replicate these drinks at-home.
Good Grit Magazine:
This time of the year, is there one particular mixed drink and or cocktail that everyone orders when they visit your establishment?
Our staple, Sweet Tea Vodka, is always a top hit. Being the world’s first, visitors love to come to the distillery in Park Circle and order an Arnold Palmer with lemonade and our iconic Sweet Tea Vodka.
In your opinion, what goes into creating the perfect fall spirit?
Incorporating the flavors of the season, whether that be an apple, caramel, blackberry. Our moonshines are really versatile and are a perfect inclusion for some flavor with a kick in fall cocktails.
For those opting to stay closer to home during the fall season, what make-at-home cocktail tips do you have for them?
Try different things! We’ve all been at home and maybe making the same cocktails for a while. If you’re sick of tequila, try making a margarita or Paloma with our White Lightning Moonshine. Doing a spirit swap can help keep things interesting and trying something new can be fun.
Keeping with the make-at-home cocktails, what types of alcohol & mixes should people have in order to recreate some of your famous seasonal drinks?
It could be as simple as Caramel Moonshine to mix with hot cocoa, or hot tea to add our Sweet Tea Vodka for a Firefly Toddy, but some staple mixers to have at home are lemonade, fresh blackberries, and seltzer or soda water.
Ingredients aside, for those wanting to make their own at-home bar carts a little more professional, what types of mixology tools do you suggest for the at-home mixologist?
You can keep it easy with a cocktail shaker and jigger to measure. All of our spirits and cocktails are intended to be simple to mix and even simpler to enjoy so don't worry about having a stocked bar cart. Just some good Firefly Spirits, mixers, and some good company.
Now that you have the pro-tips, we’ll spill the (vodka) sweet tea by sharing Four Firefly Fall Drink Recipes:
Candy Corn Moonshine
Monsters and goblins aren’t the only ones having some Halloween fun this year. Call the ghouls together and create your own Candy Corn Moonshine. Soak one cup of candy corn in your Firefly White Lightning Moonshine jar for two days. Strain and serve for an elevated flavored spirit ideal for Halloween parties! Make it a candy corn cocktail by mixing 2 oz. candy corn moonshine with 4 oz. lemon-lime soda and garnish with a lime wedge.
Black Widow Tea
It doesn’t take a basic witch to replicate this mouthwatering purple recipe. Mix 1.5 oz. Firefly Original Sweet Tea Vodka with 1.5 oz. lemonade and a splash of blackberry liquor. Multiply recipe for the ultimate punch bowl for a spooky celebration. Top with blackberry skewer for garnish. It’s gourd-eous.
Pumpkin Spiked Latte
Be your own boo-rista by creating Firefly’s dreamy spiked latte by mixing 1.5 oz. Firefly Original Sweet Tea Vodka, 1 cup of your favorite hot tea, 1.5 oz. pumpkin syrup (or ⅛ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice) and 1.5 oz. milk or cream. If you are feeling extra festive, garnish with whipped cream and a dash of cinnamon.
Caramel Apple Jello Shots
Featuring freshly picked apples as a container for Caramel Apple Jello Shots makes for one epic fall treat. Hollow out 5 apples, leaving a ¼ inch border on each. Brush edges with lemon juice and place each hollow-side up in muffin tins. Make Jello by pouring 1 ¾ cup apple cider vinegar in a small saucepan along with two envelopes (.25 oz. each) of unflavored powdered gelatin and whisk over low heat until gelatin is dissolved. Remove from heat, add 1 cup of Firefly Caramel Moonshine, pour into apples and refrigerate until firm, around four hours. Place apples gelatin side down on a cutting board and slice into wedges before serving.
Find where to buy Firefly Spirits here.