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Bourbon Aperol Fall Cocktails For Two, Served With Mini Baked Potatoes

November 26, 2020

As fall is changing the colors of nature outside, let’s invite some hues and scents of ripe fruit indoors for cocktail hour! Who knows – perhaps in between the turkey basting, herb chopping, gravy thickening, pie making, and the antics of pesky relatives over Thanksgiving – maybe you need a drink? Better still when it creates a quiet moment with your sweetheart!

Although the hot summer days perfect for Aperol Spritz may be over, you can still use the zesty orange liquor to whip up a suitable drink matching the season. And, should you make this pairing on Thanksgiving day: we suggest baked mini potatoes. They don’t take long to roast, and you may already have the oven heated up. Or, you can use a mini-oven. Want it really fast? Microwave them first, then finish them in the oven. 

To make things interesting, we are flavoring our appetizer with smoky sweet bacon and hints of caramel bourbon. Should you have guests for Thanksgiving, this fragrant delight is very easy to scale up.

Bourbon Aperol Fall Cocktail For Two

• 3 ounces bourbon

• 1 ounce Aperol

• 1/2 lemon, freshly squeezed

• 4 – 6 ounces club soda or sparkling mineral water

• 1 cup ice cubes

• 2 strips of lemon peel, for garnish


Place the peels into two old fashioned glasses, and press with a pestle or wooden stick to release the oils. Divide ice cubes into two old-fashioned glasses. Divide Aperol between the glasses. Add 1 1/2 oz bourbon to each glass, then very gently top each glass with club soda or sparkling water. Serve with a stirring stick. (Sip without stirring, if you prefer a layering of flavors, give it a gentle stir if you prefer your drink to taste consistent throughout).

Mini-baked potatoes

• 6 baby roasting potatoes

• 1 – 2 strips bacon

• 4 – 6 tablespoons sour cream (or Greek yogurt)

• 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

• dried oregano or herbs de provence, to taste

• salt and pepper, to taste


Preheat mini-oven to 375 degrees. Prep baking sheet with lightly oiled aluminum foil (optional, for easy clean up). Toss potatoes with oil, salt, and pepper.

Bake in the oven for about 25 – 30 minutes, until skin is golden and a fork pokes through easily. (Times varies from oven to oven). Give the potatoes a toss half-way through. While potatoes roast, heat a small skillet to fry bacon strips. When bacon is cooked, soak up excess oil on a paper towel. (This will crisp the bacon faster and avoids burning it). Once cooled, chop cooked bacon into bits and set aside.

Remove roasted potatoes from oven and let cool. Carefully make two cuts on the top of each potato, with the cuts resembling the letter “X”. Give each cut potato a squeeze to create an opening for the sour cream or yogurt. Sprinkle potatoes with salt and pepper to taste. Top about 1/2 to 1 tablespoon sour cream per potato, depending on your preferences. Top sour cream with bacon bits. Sprinkle topped potatoes with dried oregano, herbs de provence, or your favorite dried herb.

Katie Chen (LinkedIn) is the owner of Catch Matchmaking, a boutique dating, relationship consulting, and matchmaking agency is Los Angeles.

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