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NITECAP bad manners cocktail
Photograph: Paul WagtouiczBad Manners cocktail at Nitecap

The eight best fall cocktails in NYC

Forget the fleece—wrap yourself up in these crisp fall cocktails

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Autumn gives us beautiful fall foliage and a chance to leaf peep but it also brings brisk weather. Spiced spirits are your best bet for warming up, but when it’s not quite time to stake out fireplaces at New York bars or glug down hot winter cocktails, it’s hard to find a good glass that’s not hard cider. Instead, get cozy with one of this season’s best fall cocktails.
  • Bars
  • Cocktail bars
  • East Village
  • price 2 of 4

The mound of toasted coconut atop the Collins glass alludes to cloying creaminess, but a kick of citrus and potent floral gin add backbone to the milky base. Biting pumpkin allspice is coated in sweet, caramely Batavian arrack, a rumlike liqueur, which echoes a slice of good pie.
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  • Bars
  • Cocktail bars
  • Upper East Side
  • price 2 of 4

The froth-filled cup looks like a latté, then the fragrant spiced rum and deep dried-fruit sherry surge onto your tongue. The sugarcane sweetness is cut by a sprinkling of nutmeg, which falls through the foam and swirls into the concoction.
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  • Bars
  • Cocktail bars
  • Lower East Side
  • price 1 of 4

Like a good fruit cobbler, this bourbon glass balances bright berry with a hit of cinnamon that’s more bite than bark. As the baking spice fades off, a jolt of lemon and zing of ginger bring back tart cranberry.
  • Restaurants
  • Creole
  • East Village
  • price 2 of 4

The clarified classic looks like a sweet, soft and light honey but shouldn’t be underestimated. Packing a punch with tang as strong as Greek yogurt, just a kiss of honey and a sour-citrus zip, this fortified wine shake-up is definitely a slow-sipper.
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  • Bars
  • Cocktail bars
  • Financial District
  • price 2 of 4

Black-tea-–infused vodka paired with smoky mescal sounds overwhelming and heavy, but bright fresh lemon and a pinch of sea salt slice through the murkiness. The smooth, creamy white chocolate and dry, nearly savory aperitif wine push this margarita look-alike into autumn.
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