This is my favorite times of the year. I could wax poetic on the changing of the leaves, the crisp air that somehow smells cleaner, and the smell of burning wood. However, let's be honest, this my friends is bourbon weather! As a purist I like my bourbon neat. Despite that inclination, I find the following flavors add the perfect complexity to the ideal fireside spirit.
Pecan Infused Bourbon
Set the oven to 300 degrees. In a bowl of cold water, soak 2 cups of pecan halves for 20 minuets. Thoroughly drain the pecans, then spread them on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Season the nuts with salt, pepper, a dash of cayenne pepper and orange zest. Bake the pecans for 20 minuets, string occasionally. Let cool to room temperature, then add to one 750ml bottle of bourbon. Let stand for 1 week, stirring daily. Strain through a cheesecloth to catch all the bits and pieces.