Falling leaves, football games and spiced seasonal brews – all signs that fall has arrived. Yet even with the surge in sporting events and the ever-increasing assortment of craft beers and ciders available to the connoisseur and novice alike, there are days when a thoughtfully crafted cocktail is preferred to a tall pint.

Fortunately, since the days of Jerry Thomas, the founder of the cocktail, there have been bartenders who believe there’s a synergy between spirits and brews. When combined, the result is both unique and flavorful – creating the perfect way to enjoy both of the season’s best without having to choose.

Sandeman, the world’s leading port and sherry company, asked master mixologist Jason Littrell to provide his take on this timely combination. He created an impeccably balanced libation, which uses one of fall’s most plentiful crops: the apple.

Coupled with Sandeman Founders Reserve Porto, the hard cider and apple brandy provide the ideal balance of sweet and tart.

Sandeman Harvest Sour

  • 3/4 parts raspberry syrup*
  • 3/4 parts fresh lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 parts Sandeman Founders Reserve Porto
  • 1/2 part apple brandy
  • Top with 2-3 parts dry apple cider

Preparation: Pour all ingredients in a shaker, except cider. Shake quickly and strain into a Collins glass. Top with cider, garnish with raspberries and dust with nutmeg.

*In a medium saucepan combine 4 cups sugar and 1 quart water. Bring to a boil, stirring until sugar has dissolved. In another saucepan, muddle a small container of raspberries (about 6 ounces), and combine the syrup and raspberries. Let rest for a day, then strain. Keeps for about a month.