Infused bourbon is not something you see everyday down in the South where we like our bourbon pure as the old-world Mississippi River. Infused vodkas, on the other hand, are welcomed whole-heartedly. It gives the blank liquor some key flavor and interest it lacks. On the other hand, most self-respecting bourbon drinkers order this old-fashioned liquor poured “just the way God made it.” Straight. From there, on the rocks or with a splash of water doesn’t garner a second glance. But, a fruit-infused bourbon? Now that’s a doozy. And we’re here to say it’s a worthy out-of-the-box option that you’re going to like to have on hand for Southern bourbon cocktails or just a tangy bourbon taken neat. When it comes to infusing bourbon, you can’t just throw in any fruit or herb you’d like (like vodka) and expect a homerun. Whiskey has its own rich, complex flavor profile that needs to be complemented strategically. Working within the common notes in bourbon, you’ll want to dabble in infusing with flavors such as honey, vanilla, orange, nuts, and autumn spices. A smoke-essenced bourbon is also quite delicious. In observance of one of the all-time greatest cocktails, we wanted to infuse our bourbon with oranges. À la old-fashioned style. The subtle citrus notes complement the rich bourbon perfectly, and you’ll be thanking us when using it in everything from a porch-sipping cocktail to a bourbon ice cream float!
2 navel oranges
2 cups (16 oz.) bourbon
How to Make It
Using a vegetable peeler, remove orange peels in wide strips, cutting from top to bottom following curvature of fruit. Remove bitter white pith from peels. Reserve orange segments for another use.
Combine bourbon and orange peels in a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid. Cover with lid, and let stand in a cool place 1 week. Remove and discard orange peels. Use in your favorite bourbon cocktails.