Will The Night Owl’s ‘The (Saratoga) Apple Of My Eye’ Be The Next Great Saratoga Cocktail?

The inspiration for saratoga living‘s “The Next Great Saratoga Cocktail” feature was, simply put, that our staff agreed that the Saratoga cocktail of record—the “Saratoga Sunrise“—was both outdated and gross. So we set out to find local bars and mixologists who were game for creating their own spin on what a “Next Great Saratoga Cocktail” might look and taste like. Prior to this final entry, there were 13 others, which we’ve included in no specific order below:

Hamlet & Ghost – “Saratoga Sunset

Morrissey’s – “Saratoga Smash

The Mercantile Kitchen & Bar – “Mayflower

Putnam Place – “The Longshot

Cantina – “The Double Down

The Brook Tavern – “The Yaddo

Harvey’s Restaurant and Bar – “The Saratoga Spring

9 Maple Avenue – “Saratoga Rye Buck

Max London’s – “The Saratoga

15 Church – “The Saratoga Rose

Henry Street Taproom – “The Father Karras

Siro’s – “Ginger Mint Mojito

The Sinclair – “The Metro

We included The Sinclair’s entry last, because that bar has permanently closed. But from its ashes rose The Night Owl, and mixologist Maddie Pascale’s entry is below.

As a native Saratogian, I’ve always loved going to area apple orchards in the fall to pick apples—both as a kid and an adult. The inspiration for this cocktail came from the classic pairing of whiskey and brandy/cognac in drinks such as the Vieux Carré. Swapping out the traditional cognac for an American-made apple brandy, I tied it together with Saratoga Apple cider and our house-made Chinese five-spice syrup, along with a touch of Pellegrino Amaro, stirred and garnished with a flamed orange.

Bar: The Night Owl
Cocktail: The (Saratoga) Apple Of My Eye
mixologist: Maddie Pascale

The (Saratoga) Apple Of My Eye


1.25 oz. Saint Lawrence Spirits Captain’s Flask Bourbon Whiskey

1.25 oz. Laird’s Apple Brandy

*0.5 oz. Chinese five-spice apple cider syrup*

0.5 oz. Pellegrino Amaro

1 Orange


Stir ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled coupe or martini glass. Garnish with a flamed orange disk (a half-dollar-sized cut of skin from a fresh orange, squeezed skin side out near a lit match or lighter). Drop disk into drink and serve, or enjoy yourself!

*recipe for Chinese five-spice apple cider syrup:


8oz. Saratoga Apple cider

8oz. Sugar

15g. Chinese five-spice powder


Blend to incorporate. Refrigerate for 24 hours and strain through an extra-fine cheesecloth or coffee filter. Keep refrigerated for up to three weeks.  

Want to vote on your favorite “Next Great Saratoga Cocktail” entry? Join us at Putnam Place on December 12 for our “Saratoga Gives Back” holiday party—and crown your champion! Purchase tickets here.

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