Nothing caps off a brisk afternoon of horseback riding or clay shooting on a country estate like a good bourbon. At Barnsley Resort, a luxury getaway in the foothills of North Georgia, standout craft cocktails are created at Woodlands Grill, the restaurant and bar at the English manor–inspired property where these and other activities are offered. Certified bourbon steward Jackson Vaught says the resort’s signature old fashioned—made with a twist on the classic recipe—is a favorite. They start with their private, single-barrel bourbon made through a partnership with Woodford Reserve. Next, they slowly infuse the spirit with smoked pecans to produce a subtle nutty flavor. For a bit of tartness, they add Amarena black cherry juice. Angostura and orange bitters complement with aromatics, then the mixture is poured over a single cube of “smoked” ice (the water is infused with smoke before freezing) and garnished with a dehydrated orange slice. A cocktail smoking chamber that uses cherry or apple wood chips adds a dramatic visual finish. For a post-dinner treat, Vaught suggests pairing the signature cocktail with a slice of pecan pie or his favorite—chocolate pecan ice cream made with the same nuts that infuse the bourbon.
This article appears in the Winter 2024 issue of Southbound.