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"I call this cocktail a 'fall back' because we just set our clocks back a week or so ago," says John. "It's like a whiskey sour, but instead of regular simple syrup, we're using a fall-spiced simple syrup with cinnamon, allspice, star anise, peppercorns and orange peel. It smells like fall—it really does." And the effect is wonderful in the cocktail, which Rach calls "lovely and beautifully balanced." John created it to go with her Italian Pot Roast and Polenta.
For the spiced simple syrup, in a small saucepan, bring all the ingredients to a simmer over low heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Continue to simmer and stir for 10 minutes to let the flavors develop. Let cool, then strain into an airtight container and refrigerate.
For the cocktail, combine the whiskey, lemon juice and spiced simple syrup in a cocktail shaker. Add ice, shake and strain into an ice-filled rocks glass. Top with club soda and garnish with orange wheel.
Always drink responsibly.