Gallery: The Best Drinks We Drank in October

Aperol Spritz in Rome
Aperol Spritz in Rome

"One of my favorite things about my recent visit to Rome was partaking in the tradition of the aperitivo. It's sort of like happy hour, but a million times better, with complimentary bowls of fresh olives, chips, and other bite size treats. My aperitif cocktail of choice was a Spritz, made with Aperol, Prosecco, and a splash of soda." —Vicky Wasik, Visual Editor

[Photograph: Vicky Wasik]

Red Water Oolong
Red Water Oolong

"It's been a dreary, rainy October in New York, but as far as I'm concerned, there's no such thing as bad weather, just weather more suitable for tea. Which is why I'm inhaling this Red Water Oolong: a Taiwanese oolong that's heavily oxidized but only lightly roasted, which gives it an incredible balance: the fresh, floral, and airy qualities of a high mountain oolong and the rich body of a dark tea—all minus the tanins and bitterness. It's smooth and beautifully drinkable, a perfect rainy day tea." —Max Falkowitz, National Editor

[Photograph: Vicky Wasik]

Monkey Shoulder Scotch
Monkey Shoulder Scotch

"I'm a bit of a Scotch snob—give me 3 fingers of a Corryvreckan or an A'bunadh (neat, maybe a couple of drops of water) and I'm a happy camper. I typically shy away from blended Scotches, but my wallet can’t accommodate the single malt stuff when I make hot toddies for the office or fill a dozen flasks for a bachelor’s party. Luckily the editorial gods blessed me with this helpful guide on less-expensive Scotch. I really like the Monkey Shoulder for its hints of peat and oily smoke and smooth honeyed finish. It’s like a mix between a bourbon and an Islay! If I’m feeling extravagant, will I choose Monkey Shoulder over a Laphroaig Quarter Cask? Maybe not. But is it my new go-to when I’m looking for something to sip on after work or to mix into my Manhattans for some extra personality? Definitely." —Leang Chaing, Sales Operations Manager

[Photograph: Monkey Shoulder]

French Press Coffee
French Press Coffee

"I gave up on my French press years ago, and went through various phases: Clever brewer, Aeropress, Kalita Wave. But Nick Cho's article on how to brew French press convinced me to break mine out again, and I've been making coffee this way daily ever since." —Daniel Gritzer, Culinary Director

[Photograph: Daniel Gritzer]

Off Color Brewing's Fierce
Off Color Brewing's Fierce

"Off Color is without a doubt one of Chicago's most inspired breweries. I'm a sucker for their eye-catching label design, and the Berliner Style
Weisse Ale known as Fierce is a new favorite. At an easygoing 3.8% ABV, it's a great session beer with a balance of pils malt and
flaked wheat, sparked with a dose of lactobacillus that contributes what the brewers call a
'Napoleonic sour streak.'" —Emma Janzen, Contributor

[Photograph: Emma Janzen]

The Virgola at Virgola, NYC
The Virgola at Virgola, NYC

"This tiny 6-foot wide wine bar won us over when we discovered it last year (fresh $1 oysters all the time and a solid Italian wine will do that), but I was hesitant when they started making cocktails, as I've had too many over-sweetened, syrupy, bitter things in my day. But the namesake Virgola cocktail nails it, with ingredients that make you raise an eyebrow—gin, tomato water, and squid ink, particularly—coming together in a way that just works. It's a refreshing, slightly tart, well-balanced cocktail that catches patrons off guard. The fact that it's black—matching Virgola's very sexy dark interior—helps, too." —Jacqueline Raposo, Contributor

[Photograph: Jacqueline Raposo]

Hot Toddy
Hot Toddy

"I've been walking around all week wrapped in a blanket, looking dolefully out the window at the cold, water-logged NYC streets. So I was deeply gratified when I found Leang standing over the stove one Friday afternoon, stirring up a potful of hot toddy. His version uses one part sugar to five parts Scotch to eight parts water. It's lemony and not too boozy, with a warming (but far from overpowering) balance of cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon. Most importantly? It's a much-needed warm, delicious, alcoholic drink at the end of a long, chilly week. Leang is officially our office angel." —Niki Achitoff-Gray, Associate Editor

[Photograph: Vicky Wasik]

Millstone Farmgate Cider
Millstone Farmgate Cider

"Having gone to university in England's cider country, I've become a bit of a cider freak. Maryland-based Millstone's Farmgate cider is very dry and barely fizzy—it's closer in flavor to a good beer than most of the commercial ciders you'd find at a grocery store. If you like your drinks tart and sour, you'll love this." —Emilia Morano-Williams, Editorial Intern

[Photograph: Emilia Morano-Williams]

Olga Raffault Chinon Rosé
Olga Raffault Chinon Rosé

"As most of the country settles into fall, we've had the hottest weather of the year in the Bay Area, so my recent weekends have been spent hiking and picnicking in 90° heat. After a day of walking around San Francisco, we stopped to sit in the garden behind Arlequin wine shop, and guzzled this lovely, refreshing bottle of Chinon Rosé made from Cabernet Franc. Sometimes it's the setting that makes a wine perfect." —Maggie Hoffman, Senior Editor

[Photograph: Maggie Hoffman]

Poipu Piña at Keoki’s Paradise in Kaua’i
Poipu Piña at Keoki’s Paradise in Kaua’i

"I’d only been off the plane for about two hours when this was handed to me, and the flavor and feel of the pineapple cooed, 'relax, you’re in Hawaii now.' Say what you will about the cheesiness of a drink served in a pineapple, but there are worse ways to be greeted by an island vacation than the Poipu Piña from Keoki’s Paradise on Kaua’i. Inside the audacious serving vessel is a spin on the piña colada. Fresh pineapple replaces pineapple juice and is further brightened with the addition of mint and lightly tart passionfruit, along with coconut rum and the traditional coconut cream." —Naomi Tomky, Contributor

[Photograph: Naomi Tomky]

Lysverket Pale Ale in Bergen, Norway
Lysverket Pale Ale in Bergen, Norway

"Due to some governmental regulations about where you can sell stronger beer, most of the beers I encountered in Norway were under 4.7% ABV. This pale ale, brewed by micro-brewery Voss Bryggeri in the town of Voss, was flavored by with citrusy and floral Citra hops. Even as I made my way through Lysverket’s tasting menu—with ample wine—I requested refills of this delicious and easy drinking beer." —Lily Freedman, Editorial Intern

[Photograph: Lily Mirabelle Freedman]

San Pellegrino Pompelmo Soda
San Pellegrino Pompelmo Soda

"It's not that I don't still love my Diet Pepsi and Mexican Coke, it's just that I spend a little more time shopping at a certain grocery store that refuses to carry standard soft drinks (oh how quickly I've adapted to the San Francisco lifestyle). As a result, I've ended up reaching for cold cans of San Pellegrino's Pompelmo soda as my default. It doesn't have the caffeine kick, but its bracingly bitter and tart flavor jolts your senses nonetheless. I love how it's not too sweet and completely refreshing, even when the weather gets chilly." —J. Kenji Lopez-Alt, Managing Culinary Director

[Photograph: Robyn Lee]

Sealed Nectar From Jsix in San Diego
Sealed Nectar From Jsix in San Diego

"I'm pretty obsessed with this layered whiskey sour variation, garnished with star
anise and finished with a drizzle of mulled wine. After a few minutes,
the wine sinks down through the cap of egg whites and settles on the
bottom of the glass. The cocktail is smooth and well-balanced—ridiculously easy
to drink." —Erin Jackson, Contributor

[Photograph: Erin Jackson]

Peach Lambic
Peach Lambic

"I'm not much of a beer drinker, so our drinks guru Maggie Hoffman suggested I might like this sweet, fruity peach lambic a few years back. Now I must confess
that my Lindemans Pêche habit, which can be easily fed by its immediate
availability at my neighborhood Fairway Market, might be getting out of
hand, which is saying something given my general aversion to alcoholic
beverages. It basically tastes like the best peach soda you've ever had."—Ed Levine, Overlord

[Photo: Vicky Wasik]

Date-banana-lime Smoothie From Taim, NYC
Date-banana-lime Smoothie From Taim, NYC

"Bananas form the base of most smoothies due to their heft, and I’m always disappointed if that’s all I taste. This smoothie had bright notes from the lime and a molasse-like sweetness from the dates. It provided a nice, rich complement to Taim’s otherwise light lunch fare." —Marj Berman, Editorial Intern

[Photograph: Marj Berman]

Waldorf Buzz
Waldorf Buzz

"The best thing I drank this month was a collaboration between Empire
brewery in Syracuse, New York and The Waldorf Astoria. The beer is
called Waldorf Buzz and it's a 6.5% ABV brown ale brewed with honey.  I didn't realize the Waldorf has a very impressive garden on the rooftop where they grow a lot of herbs and produce for their restaurants. The
coolest part was their very own apiary where the (delicious!) honey for the beer came from." —Anne Becerra, Contributor

[Photograph: Anne Becerra]