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922 South Morton Street
Bloomington, IN, 47403
United States


Cardinal Spirits is a craft distillery in Bloomington, Indiana that specializes in producing extraordinary spirits from local ingredients.  

The Drop

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Filtering by Tag: whiskey

Peach, Please cocktail recipe

Erica Sagon

Grab some peaches and mint from the farmers' market this weekend and make Peach, Please — a lovely cocktail by our bartender Alyvia Cain. 



By Alyvia Cain of Cardinal Spirits

2 oz Cardinal Spirits Barley McBarleyface unaged single malt
1/2 oz Cardinal Spirits Flora
1/2 oz orgeat
3/4 oz lemon juice
Chopped peach
Fresh mint, for garnish

Muddle peach, mint, Flora and orgeat in shaker. Add Barley McBarleyface and lemon juice to the shaker, then and ice. Shake well and double strain over ice in large rocks glass. Garnish with mint.

Night Swim cocktail recipe

Erica Sagon

One of our favorite cocktails this summer has been a rum Old Fashioned made with our Lake House Spiced Rum. This version by our bartender Kevin Hinkle combines our spiced rum with our White Oak Whiskey for a one-of-a-kind twist on an Old Fashioned.


By Kevin Hinkle of Cardinal Spirits

1 ounce Cardinal Spirits Lake House Spiced Rum
3/4 ounce Cardinal Spirits White Oak Whiskey
1/4 ounce vanilla demerara syrup (recipe follows)
2 dashes aromatic bitters
1 orange wheel, for garnish

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass or tin, then add ice. Stir several times to chill and dilute the cocktail. Strain into a rocks glass filled with ice, then garnish with an orange wheel.

To make vanilla demerara syrup: Combine 1 cup water and 2 cups turbinado sugar in a saucepan over medium heat, and stir until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat. Split 1 vanilla bean and add it to the saucepan. Let the syrup cool completely, then remove the vanilla bean.


Erica Sagon

“Only Irish coffee provides in a single glass all four essential food groups:
alcohol, caffeine, sugar and fat.” 

― Alex Levine


1.5 ounces Cardinal Spirits Single Malt Whiskey
1 teaspoon sugar
Coffee, to taste
Whipped cream, for garnish

Add sugar to a mug, then fill it halfway with coffee. Stir to dissolve sugar. Add whiskey, then top off with more coffee to fill the mug, then top with whipped cream.


Erica Sagon

This cocktail is a twist on an Old Fashioned — some people will tell you not to twist the Old Fashioned under any circumstances, and if you're mixing a drink for those kind of people, just don't bother mentioning the Old Fashioned part. This superb cocktail stands on its own: it warms from the inside with spice-infused whiskey, and the mulled orange syrup plus a mist of orange oil makes it wonderfully fragrant. 


By Jake Cifuentes of Cardinal Spirits

2.5 ounces Cardinal Spirits Single Malt Whiskey, infused with clove and anise (recipe follows)
1/2 teaspoon mulled orange syrup (recipe follows)
2 dashes aromatic bitters
Orange peel, for garnish

Add the infused whiskey, mulled orange syrup and bitters to a mixing glass, then add ice. Stir 15 times, then strain into a rocks glass with a jumbo ice cube. Squeeze a piece of orange peel over the cocktail to express the oils and wipe the rim of the glass with the peel, then use it as garnish. 

To make the infused whiskey: Add a few cloves and an ounce of anise seed to 12 ounces of Cardinal Spirits Single Malt Whiskey and let steep at least overnight.

To make mulled orange syrup: In a saucepan over medium heat, combine 1 cup water, 3 large strips of orange peel, 2 thin orange slices and one mulling spice tea bag, and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, add 1 cup sugar and stir to dissolve. Remove from heat and let cool, then strain ingredients.




Erica Sagon

Don't be fooled by the jingle-jangle tunes and Christmas glass in this video — this Milk Punch recipe is as solid for a January weekend as it was during the holidays.

Our smooth Single Malt Whiskey is right at home in this creamy cocktail, which is gently sweetened with apple butter. 


By Baylee Pruitt of Cardinal Spirits

Makes 1 cocktail

1 ounce Cardinal Spirits Tiki Rum
1 ounce Cardinal Spirits Single Malt Whiskey
1 ounce half-and-half
3/4 ounce unsweetened apple butter
1 dash aromatic bitters
Nutmeg, for garnish

Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake vigorously, then strain into a rocks glass with ice. Garnish with freshly grated nutmeg.


Erica Sagon

Chilly nights call for a hot cup of tea. Adding a splash of whiskey to it won't hurt. And while you're at it, maybe a little honey and lemon juice and bitters? Cardinal Spirits bartender Baylee Pruitt shows how to make a classic Hot Toddy with our Single Malt Whiskey.


2 ounces Cardinal Spirits Single Malt Whiskey
1/2 ounce honey syrup
1/4 ounce fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 dashes aromatic bitters
Orange-spiced black tea, hot, to taste
Clove-studded lemon wheel, for garnish

Add whiskey, honey syrup, lemon juice and bitters to a mug. Top with hot tea, stir gently, then garnish with lemon wheel.


Erica Sagon

We're releasing our very first barrel of single malt whiskey on Saturday. RSVP and come early if you want to get a bottle. So you get a bottle, bring it home, and then what? You make a Whiskey Sour.

You just cannot go wrong with this drink: smooth and airy, with a gentle tang and a nice, foamy cap. Your dad likes it. Your bestie likes it. Even your co-worker who definitely does not like whiskey likes it. There's a reason a Whiskey Sour is known as the white T-shirt of cocktails.

A note on your shaking technique: cocktails like this one that call for egg white are usually shaken in two steps. The first is a so-called dry shake without ice — this emulsifies the egg white. Then, add ice and shake a second time, which chills and properly dilutes the drink. Cheers!



Makes 1 cocktail

2 ounces Cardinal Spirits Whiskey
1/2 ounce fresh squeezed lemon juice
1/2 ounce fresh squeezed lime juice
1/2 ounce simple syrup
1 egg white
brandied cherry and bitters, for garnish

Combine ingredients in a shaker without ice, and shake vigorously to emulsify the egg white. Then, add ice to the shaker and shake again to chill. Strain into a rocks glass with ice, and garnish with a brandied cherry and a couple dashes of bitters.


Erica Sagon

NocinoSour (2 of 4).jpg

We can’t get enough of this cocktail during fall and winter. It’s just right for colder months: Naturally warming, and holiday-ish without being holiday-ish, you know what we mean? The star spirit is Nocino, a green walnut liqueur that we release every November.

If you want to know more about how we made this special liqueur, it's all right here, from walnut to bottle.


Makes 1 cocktail

1.5 ounces Cardinal Spirits Nocino
3/4 ounce lemon juice
1/2 ounce demerara syrup
1/4 ounce sweet vermouth
3 dashes Angostura bitters

 Shake all ingredients well with ice, then strain into a coupe glass.



Erica Sagon

Nocino, our newest spirit arriving this Saturday, is definitely delicious all on its own. It is, after all, a digestif, meant to be sipped neat after a meal. But Nocino is fun to play around with in cocktails, too— it can be that subtle twist that makes a drink memorable.

Take the Manhattan. You've had dozens of them. But have you had one with Nocino? The warm, earthy notes of Nocino are right at home in this classic cocktail, adding a lusciousness that makes this drink appeal to even those who wouldn't normally order a Manhattan. 

It's a perfect signature cocktail for your annual holiday dinner with friends — say, Friendsgiving? Nocino will be available by the bottle at the distillery only starting Saturday. 


By Chris Resnick

Makes 1 cocktail

1.5 oz Cardinal Spirits White Oak Whiskey
3/4 oz Cardinal Spirits Nocino
1/2 oz sweet vermouth
dash of bitters

Stir gently with ice, then strain into a cold glass.



Erica Sagon

This weekend is homecoming at Indiana University in Bloomington, and we've got some tailgating in our future. And you know what feels awesome in your hand on one of those sunny yet brisk fall days? A warm drink to keep you toasty.

We asked our bar manager Logan Hunter to share his favorite apple cider recipe to make for a crowd — something we could spike with our delicious White Oak Whiskey and pour into a thermos or two to share on the go with friends. And trust us, when you roll in with spiked cider, you make a lot of friends.

We are running a special Saturday and Sunday at the distillery: Buy a bottle of White Oak Whiskey or Honey Vanilla Vodka + a half gallon of Musgrave's Apple Cider + a pack of spices for $28. We only have 24 half-gallons so this will go quick!

This recipe of spiked apple cider makes a big batch — enough to fill about 16 mugs — but it's easy to halve if that sounds like too much. (Hint: it's never too much.) Make it at home in the morning, pour it into a few thermoses or one big guy, and head out. 


By Logan Hunter

Makes about 16 servings

1 gallon apple cider (We love the cider from Musgrave Orchard in Bloomington)
4 cinnamon sticks
12 cloves
12 allspice berries
1/2 ounce vanilla extract
1/2 cup sugar
1 orange, sliced
1 lemon, sliced
2 cups Cardinal Spirits White Oak Whiskey (about 2/3 of a bottle)

  1. Combine all ingredients except for the whiskey in a medium pot. Bring to a simmer over low heat. Continue to simmer for about 20 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat and let the cider cool slightly, then strain if desired.
  3. Add the whiskey and stir to combine. Pour cider into thermoses or a large insulated beverage container, working quickly to keep it warm. If you don't need it to-go, keep it warm on low heat on the stove or in a slow cooker.  

Variation: This cider is also stellar with our Honey Vanilla Vodka instead of White Oak Whiskey. Omit the vanilla extract and sugar if using Honey Vanilla Vodka.