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The Hudson Valley Sips We’ll Be Seeking This Halloween

Adobe Stock / 5ph

The Hudson Valley’s spooktacular craft beverages give new meaning to the notion of a spirit guide during the region’s most haunted season.

By Sarah Daniels and Sabrina Sucato

Trick or treat? How about both? Leave the candy to the kids and spoil yourself rotten with these sense-beguiling, area spirits. (And if you want to tuck away some candy corn for later, we won’t judge you either.) Whether you sip them in cocktails or savor them straight, you’ll love toasting to the spooky season with these drinks once Halloween arrives.

Stoutridge Winery & Distillery: Empire Rye

Stoutridge’s Empire Rye, a straight rye whiskey, is all about local flavor from the Hudson Valley. While not exactly spooky, this traditional rye produced in Ulster County is deceptively delicious, thanks to a unique aging process that occurs in the Valley’s very own Quercus Cooperage oak barrels. It has wonderful notes of cinnamon spice, making it the perfect grown-up alternative to the much-hyped #PSL.

Albany Distilling Company: Awakened Spirit Vodka

Consider this your ultimate Halloween sip. Distillers at ALB blend Death Wish cold brew coffee — supposedly the strongest on the market, and created up in Saratoga Springs — with their signature vodka for a seriously unique libation. Just as the spooktacular name of the drink implies, this stuff is strong enough to jolt you out of any ghoulish state.


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Harvest Spirits: Cornelius Applejack

The method used to produce this applejack is just short of pure magic — curious, considering the drink emerged during a period of history in which witchy ways were hunted down. To make this Halloween-ready sip, the folks at Harvest Spirits distill their hard cider twice, then age it for five years in American oak ex-bourbon casks. The result is wicked good: apple-tasting with a hint of vanilla and a clean, spiced finish. It’s just as wonderful on its own as it is mixed into a cocktail.

Related: 3 Delicious Cocktails to Start Your Fall Off Right