Owensboro Sour Cocktail

Recipe by Chef Newman Miller. The full Kentucky Fall Meal is featured in the Fall issue of Bourbon+. Story by Steve Coomes. Photography by Anna May.


Dinner comes with a cocktail dubbed the Owensboro Sour, and it’s made from smoked and juiced Arkansas black apples mixed with bourbon that is bonded or above proof. ‘Use fresh lemon juice, a spiced simple syrup, and shake it all over ice.’” –Excerpt from the feature “Newman’s Own Feast” by Steve Coomes


(On finishing day)

  • 1.5 ounces bourbon, 100 proof or higher
  • 1.5 ounces smoked apple juice, recipe here (link recipe)
  • 0.25 freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 0.5 ounces Spiced Simple Syrup, recipe following
  • For the Garnish: ½ cup of white sugar, teaspoon ground black pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon Savory Spice Mixture, recipe here (link recipe)


  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 2 allspice berries
  • 2 grates of fresh nutmeg or teaspoon of ground


  1. On a small saucer, pour about 2 tablespoons of Spiced Simple Syrup. Carefully dip the first-quarter inch of the exterior rim of a rocks glass into the syrup, coating all the way around the glass, then dip glass into garnish mixture. Add fresh ice and set aside.
  2. To a shaker add cubed ice to about three-fourths full, followed by all liquids. Shake vigorously for 10 seconds and, using a Hawthorne strainer, strain drink into iced rocks glass.
  3. Since this cocktail is prepared and served alongside the fresh, hot entrée, make a four-cocktail batch of the drink by measuring and blending all ingredients. Set that aside while you rim the four rocks glasses, then, as the entrée is being plated, recruit a helper to shake half the batch and fill two iced rocks glasses; then repeat for the other two.
Michael Eman
Official Contributor
Kevin Gibson is a free-lance writer who writes for numerous publications, including Bourbon+ magazine, Thrillist, and Alcohol Professor.