Lifestyle & opinion

Get in the spirit for Halloween with these spooky cocktails!

Spirits buyer Sarah Knowles MW likes mixing up a few cocktails. As October comes to a close, she's sharing a few of her favourites, all of which lend themselves nicely to a Halloween tipple.

Bloody Mary cocktail

Bloody Mary

A classic cocktail if ever there was one. I like to start with a glass full of ice, a good glug of vodka and a decent-quality tomato juice. Everyone has their favourite seasonings but I tend to go for a few shakes of Worcestershire sauce, a touch of Tabasco or some horseradish – fresh, grated if possible, then a pinch of celery salt and a crack of black pepper. Ideally, I like to garnish with a huge stick of celery as well as a large wedge of lemon. 


A ghoulish rum-based punch made with a blend of dark and white rum (often overproof), topped up with pineapple juice, and a couple of good squeezes of lime and/or pink grapefruit, a touch of pastis and a dash of grenadine. Garnish with cherries and mint. 

Toffee Apple Sour 

I always think Calvados is a great autumnal spirit and would be a good idea for a grown-up treat for Bonfire Night too. Shake the Calvados with egg white, lemon juice, and a squeeze of agave syrup, golden syrup or toffee sauce and serve in some chic glasses for lovely warming treat. 

Pumpkin Spiced Old Fashioned 

I love to make an old fashioned with plenty of bourbon, stirred over ice and a simple syrup (dissolve a lot of dark brown sugar into a small amount of water), with a few shakes of angostura bitters, garnished with a twist of orange peel. At Halloween, however, I might swap the bitters for a more spiced orange-based bitter, add a cinnamon stick and possibly a dash of pumpkin spiced syrup (now widely available for coffees).

Satan’s Whiskers

A twist on a gin martini – shake gin with both red and dry white vermouth and a little triple sec. Lengthen with a dash of orange juice (blood orange juice looks great) and serve with citrus-peel garnish. 

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Sarah Knowles MW

Society Buyer

Sarah Knowles MW

Sarah joined The Society in March 2014 and has taken over responsibility for Champagne, North America and Italy, as well as overseeing our portfolio of sparkling wines and spirits. Sarah passed her Masters of Wine qualification in 2015 and won a prize for submitting the best research paper.

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