Halloween arrives when Autumn is at its best – the leaves are falling, it’s getting darker, and wind howls among the trees. It’s the perfect time for trick-or-treating or eerie walks in dark forests.

This is my take on one of Diana Yen’s delicious Halloween concoctions. It’s a cloudy, complex cocktail with tones of smoky leaves and spicy, mulled rum. Perfect to be sipped around a bonfire, waiting to catch a ghostly sight of the Headless Horseman riding into the night.



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  • 60ml mezcal
  • 30ml dark rum
  • 15ml absinthe
  • 10ml sugar syrup
  • a couple of drops of Angostura Bitters
  • a blend of spices (2 black peppercorns, 1 clove, 3 juniper berries, 2 pimento berries, 1/4tbsp of ground all spice, 1/8tbsp of ground cinnamon)
  • a sprig of rosemary for garnish


Ground the spices with a pestle and mortar and blend them with the rum, the mezcal, the bitters drops and the sugar syrup in a cocktail shaker. Stir gently and then let the mix rest for a little bit (you can do this even a day in advance if you want). In the meantime, pour the absinthe into an Old Fashioned glass, swirl it around the glass to coat it and then discard the spirit. Add a couple of ice cubes to the coated glass and strain your mix into it through a fine sieve.
Light the rosemary sprig until it smokes and add it to the mix. Serve the cocktail straight away.

A little note: I was missing a couple of ingredients but had a lovely, smoky mezcal at home (handmade by a Mexican friends’ dad), so I decided to make my own version and truly blend in Hallow’s Eve with The Day of the Dead. However, if you can easily find a St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram, then replace the rum, spices and sugar syrup with 30ml of the dram – you might miss the cloudiness in the drink, but it’ll be a lot easier to mix.

Styling: Margherita Poggiali
Photography: Dee Ramadan