There’s this southern tradition of donuts called sticky buns and when I opened up a new simple syrup and tasted it, I knew I would be creating a Pecan Sticky Bun cocktail with a whiskey base. If you’ve ever seen the excessiveness of a pecan sticky bun, it looks like a honey bun or cinnamon roll covered in a syrupy mass of toasted pecans. Sometimes it’s even covered with creamy cinnamon roll frosting. It’s a sugar coma just looking at it.
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If you’re just joining us on the blog, this week’s quarantine cocktail theme is donuts! Yesterday we kicked off the week with Maple Caramel Long John cocktails, and today, we’re staying in them but getting even sweeter with this pecan sticky bun cocktail.
The Story Behind this Donut Cocktail
When we would visit Fort Myers Beach, there was a small café there that made world-famous pecan sticky buns. I didn’t realize they would be so large they’d have trouble fitting in a take-out container. I watched the server take a water pitcher filled with flowing cream cheese frosting pour about a cup of frosting on the pecan sticky bun. And then I ate the whole damned thing. It was glorious. Thankfully we’d ridded up from the south end of the beach, but I’m sure we didn’t come close to expending the calories we spent eating those pecan sticky buns
This cocktail serves as an homage to that crazy experience. Again, I’m playing with a Monin syrup I’d gotten, the cinnamon roll syrup and this stuff tastes as if you’re taking a bite of a fresh cinnamon roll. Perhaps not as good as an Ann Sathers’ cinnamon roll in Chicago, but a damn fine one nonetheless.
Flavors in this Pecan Sticky Bun Cocktail
I am using my Rivulet pecan liqueur again so that I can get that really sugary sweet pecan flavor and the caramel liqueur from yesterday. If you don’t have the Monin’s cinnamon bun syrup, you could substitute a cinnamon-vanilla simple syrup. And I am garnishing the glass excessively again. This time I’m dipping donut holes in cinnamon roll cream cheese icing and sprinking them with candied pecans. Over the top, I know, but it’s donut week and I’ve learned anything about donuts this week it’s that you can never go too far with donuts.
For those of you curious about the other recipes in the Quarantine Series, I’ll put them here before you skim past to get to the recipe. Quarantine Juleps, (Breakfast Julep, the Pineapple Sage Rum Julep, Elvis Julep (peanut butter-banana), Root Beer Float Julep, and the Persian Julep (rose-apricot) ), Quarantine Old Fashioneds (Breakfast Wakey Wakey, Smoke and Spice, Home School, Taco Truck, and Campari/Bitter Lessons ), Quarantine Manhattans (Balanced Perfection (Perfect Manhattan), Coffee Manhattan, Chocolate Ginger Manhattan, French Quarter Manhattan, and the Caramel Orange Manhattan.), Quarantine Whiskey Sours (Blackberry Sunset, Whiskey Tiki, Blue Mood Orange, Ya Basic, and Peach Rosemary), and Quarantine Smashes (Whiskey Smash, Blackberry Sage Smash, Pineapple Tiki Smash, Strawberry Basil Smash and the Coffee Cherry Smash.)
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You probably already have these, but you may need them, too:
Pecan Sticky Bun Cocktail
- 2 oz bourbon (I used Old Bardstown Bottled in Bond)
- ½ oz Monin’s cinnamon roll syrup (or vanilla-cinnamon simple)
- ½ oz Rivulet pecan liqueur
- ½ oz caramel liqueur (I used Stroopwaffel caramel. Use non-creamy)
- 3 dashes black walnut bitters
- Garnish: donut holes frosted with cream cheese icing and candied pecans (see below for cream cheese icing recipe)
- Combine bourbon, pecan liqueur, caramel liqueur, syrup and bitters in a mixing glass. Add ice and stir until well-combined and very cold. Strain into a coupe glass with donut glaze and donut holes frosted with cream cheese icing and candied pecans. Prepare for the sugar rush.