February is sugaring season, the time when sap runs high in maple trees, waiting to be transformed to sticky, amber sweetness. Long Islanders needn’t go far for the fresh stuff either; there are several sugar shacks to tap into this month.
Enjoy nature’s unctuous bounty by mixing in a little booze. There is a growing trend of maple flavored whiskies, but fresh mixed is always better. This classic, three-step cocktail is, by all estimations (read: Google research), the first proper mixed drink to employ the tree-trapped liquid. Canucks can make it a homeland salute with Canadian whiskey, but bourbon is the original and preferred choice. And honestly, why would anyone want anything else? Maple adds depth to bourbon’s already saccharine profile and lemon cuts through and balances with sharp citrus.
3/4 oz maple syrup
3/4 oz lemon juice
Cinnamon stick for garnish
Combine ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into glass. Add cinnamon stick adornment. Never look at flavored whiskey the same again.