On the Sauce: Pecan-infused bourbon — three ways

A good bourbon and some pecans are all you need.

click to enlarge Gettin' Figgy With It. - Chris Fasick
Chris Fasick
Gettin' Figgy With It.

I've wanted to infuse a good bourbon with pecans for more than a year now.

(*Drake voice*)

All summer sixteen

All summer sixteen

Out back roasting pecans on my grill

Looking like a damn summer barbecue

But that fantasy of mine — in which I imagine how awesome the smoky nuttiness of the pecans will taste when combined with the bourbon's sweet goodness — has gone on for long enough. It's time to put a stop to the procrastination — not to mention bakers and chefs have been using bourbon in their kitchen creations for, like, ever, so hellooo payback.

Below are three cocktails made specifically for the star of the show: pecan-infused bourbon. This stuff is so good it deserves to be front and center, which means you should be sure to choose a bourbon that you like, something you can enjoy straight up (I went with Buffalo Trace).

While my schedule unfortunately didn't allow me to break out the grill like I'd daydreamed, I did toast the nuts over the stovetop. Either way, though — once you give these recipes a try at home, I'm confident you will, like me, keep a bottle of pecan-infused bourbon handy at all times.

The possibilities are truly endless.

Pecan-Infused Bourbon

1 tablespoon butter

1 cup pecans, toasted

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 cups bourbon

In a medium-size pan on medium heat, add butter and let brown. Add pecans and stir to coat. Once coated, add brown sugar and stir until dissolved. Continue stirring until pecans are fragrant. Add pecans to a 16-ounce jar and top with a lid. Let pecans chill as smoke permeates. Fill jar with bourbon and let rest for 5 to 7 days. Strain bourbon into an empty liquor bottle, or another bottle of your choice.

Pecans & Cream

Makes 1

1.5 ounces Pecan-Infused Bourbon

1 ounce coffee liqueur

1 ounce Rumchata

In a rocks glass filled with ice, add all ingredients and stir until incorporated.

The perfect harmony of sweet and nutty — with notes of coffee, vanilla and cinnamon. My goodness, never have so many flavors paired so well together.

Pecan Old Fashioned

Makes 1

2 ounces Pecan-Infused Bourbon

1 ounce maple simple syrup (microwave equal parts maple syrup and water for 30 seconds; stir)

3 dashes Angostura bitters

In a cocktail mixing glass filled halfway with ice, add bourbon, maple simple syrup and bitters. Stir with a bar spoon until well-chilled. Fill a rocks glass with ice and strain in cocktail. Garnish with an orange peel and cherry.

There are few combos on earth better than maple syrup and pecans. Throw bourbon into the equation and you've got one tasty cocktail. This twist on the classic is a killer upgrade to your drinking routine.

Gettin' Figgy With It

Makes 1

3 ounces Pecan-Infused Bourbon

1 tablespoon fig preserves

2 dashes orange bitters

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and add all ingredients. Shake until well-chilled. Fill a rocks glass with ice and pour in cocktail. Garnish with an orange peel.

Inspired by the luscious pecan pie, this deliciousness in a glass is a must-have. It's a drink you'd easily pay $12 for at the bar.

Connect with CL columnist Chris Fasick on Twitter, or email him at [email protected] if there's a cocktail or recipe you'd like featured.

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