September 20th marks National Punch Day. Soon calendars will be filled with so many different alcohol-based, marketing-invented holidays that everyone will be celebrating a different drink every day. That alone could be a utopian ideal for some drinkers. But for now? We have punch. Here are a few recipes from mixologist/author David Wondrich to celebrate the imminent arrival of autumn in good taste:
Combine all ingredients in a punch bowl. Give a quick stir. Garnish with apple slice and grated cinnamon.
The Livin’s Easy Punch (serves 20)
1 bottle of Sobieski Vodka (750 ml)
12 ¾ oz. crème de cassis
16 oz. cold water
17 oz. orange juice
8 ½ oz. fresh lime juice
25.4 oz. (3/4 of a 1-liter bottle) ginger ale
Funnel all ingredients except ginger ale into a large sealable plastic container. Shake to incorporate all ingredients. Allow to chill in fridge for 30 minutes, or make it up to one day in advance. Serve in 5 oz. cups.
Muddle sugar and lemon peel, wait 1 hour. Muddle again, then add lemon juice. Stir to dissolve sugar. Add spirit, stir and taste for balance. Add water & nutmeg before serving. Garnish with lemon slices if you wish. Ladle into a cocktail glass or holiday mug.
Trafalgar Punch (serves 16)
12 oz. Taylor Fladgate 10 year-old Tawny Port
8 oz. Laressingle VSOP Armagnac
4 oz. Wray & Nephew White Overproof rum
The peel of 3 lemons, cut in wide spirals with a vegetable peeler
¾ cup sugar
6 oz. fresh-squeezed lemon juice
24 oz. water
1 whole nutmeg
In a 3-quart punch bowl, muddle the lemon peels with sugar and let it sit for at least an hour. Then stir in the lemon juice.