The Great Pumpkin

It will be a few weeks before area pumpkin patches are filled with families looking for the perfect gourd, but pumpkin ales are in stores NOW.  It's a perfect time to turn that beer into a pumpkin liqueur, and make one of my all-time favorite drinks: The Great Pumpkin.

The Great Pumpkin is the creation of Jesse Held, prolific bartender at Parlour, Borough, Constantine, and Monello.  The sweet-and-spicy pumpkin liqueur is no more difficult to make than simple syrup, and it can last (in the refrigerator) for months.  Combined with a spicy, effervescent ginger beer, and soft, smooth, mildly smoky blended Scotch (I recommend Pig's Nose), this refreshing beverage is fall in a glass.


  • 2 oz. Blended Scotch
  • ½ oz. Pumpkin Ale Liqueur *
  • ½ oz. Fresh Lime Juice
  • 1 Dash Angostura Bitters
  • Reed's Ginger Beer

* To make Pumpkin Ale Liqueur: Combine 1 part favorite pumpkin ale, 1 part granulated sugar, 1 cinnamon stick, 5 cloves, 1 star anise, 1 tsp all spice berries in large saucepan over high heat. Continuously stir (for approximately 10 minutes) until the “beer syrup” expands to a large frothy head. Once the expansive beer head is over the top of the pot, turn heat off immediately. Take large spoon and scoop the foam off of the surface and let cool until room temp. Strain out all the solid ingredients. Add 4 oz. favorite cognac to 20 oz. of “beer syrup” and stir. Strain mixture into glass bottle and serve.


Combine scotch, lime juice, pumpkin liqueur and bitters in a mixing tin; fill with ice and shake vigorously. Double strain into Collins glass filled with fresh ice. Garnish with a lime wheel


Parlour's craft cocktail menu has its foundation in the classics; a perfect martini, an old-fashioned or a gimlet.  A small food menu is highlighted by the (locally? world?) famous Parlour Burger.

(612) 354-3135