Hall of fame

Joshua Suchan

Cocktail consultant, bartender


The Des Charentes Sour is meant as a transition from summer to fall. It’s bright and acidic, balanced with the warm, robust flavors of Pineau des Charentes and saffron. The end result is cool, refreshing with an almost apple-y finish. When @pineau_academy reached out about sharing a fall recipe, I wanted to create a drink that represents the days of late summer when the first brisk chills of autumn are still wrapped in the late-summer’s lingering warmth.

Des Charentes Sour

2 oz Pineau des Charentes White
1/2 oz Strega
.5 oz lemon juice
.25 oz apple cider vinegar
2 dashes saffron bitters
Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker. Fill the shaker with ice and shake for 10 seconds. Fine-strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a dusting of grated nutmeg.

And if you are a hot toddy fan, make sure to check out this tasty cocktail:

The Remedy

2 oz Pineau des Charentes White
0.5 oz Suze
0.5 oz Lemon Juice
.25 oz Apple Cider Vinegar
1 Dash Cardamom Bitters
2 oz HOT water
Pre-heat a mug by filling it with hot water. Fill the large side of a 2-piece cocktail shaker half-way up with hot water to create a hot water bath. Place the small side of the 2-piece shaker inside the large half so it floats on the hot water. This is your “bartender’s Bain Marie”. Add all ingredients except the hot water into the floating small shaker. Stir for 20 seconds to incorporate and heat the ingredients. Discard the hot water from the pre-heated mug. Remove the small shaker from the large shaker and pour the cocktail from that small shaker into the pre-heated mug. Top with 2 oz HOT water. Garnish with citrus and fall aromatics of your choice.

Why Pineau?

I love using Pineau in mixed drinks and exploring its versatility. It plays well as the base spirit in a low-ABV cocktail or as a fantastic modifier. It’s also something I can pour over some ice with a twist of lemon and chill with after a long day.

Mr. Suchan is a Los Angeles based hospitality professional, barman, educator, and full-time bar consultant. Through his business Ice & Alchemy he creates a one-stop-shop for restauranteurs to reach their bar program goals.