Spooky seasonal spirits: A guide to the best fall cocktails in Pittsburgh

Autumn brings a chill in the air, falling leaves and this changing weather brings about a perfect time for restaurants and bars to evolve into their seasonal menus. So, dust off your cutest sweater, head to a few of these local haunts and grab a few fall drinks to spice up the season.

by Abbie Synan
October 28, 2021

Autumn brings a chill in the air, falling leaves and this changing weather brings about a perfect time for restaurants and bars to evolve into their seasonal menus. So, dust off your cutest sweater, head to a few of these local haunts and grab a few fall cocktails to spice up the season.    

Wigle Whiskey 

fall cocktails

An award-winning distillery, Wigle Whiskey rolled out their signature fall bourbon “powered by the moon”. Wigle’s Werewolf Bourbon is a limited edition bottle that has been aged two years in oak barrels and has notes of peach, toffee and caramelized sugar to round out this straight bourbon. Not only can you head straight to their distillery for a drink and a snack, but you can also grab a bottle at their storefront in Ross Park Mall.    

Trick or Treat @ Bridges & Bourbon 

This innovative cocktail bar has a Halloween-themed drink gracing their menu this season, aptly named “Trick or Treat.” This drink is pure fall in a glass; with vodka, pumpkin, cinnamon and a decadent caramel drizzle. Not only do they have creative cocktails, but their food menu is equally enjoyable.  

Hula-ween @ Hidden Harbor 

Island-inspired, but make it Halloween. This tiki bar in Squirrel Hill is mixing up island-inspired beverages, but this time of year with an added twist. Offering unique and tasty libations that feel like a getaway in a glass, Hidden Harbor does a great job inventing new concoctions to entice patrons to keep coming back for more. This season they’ve added a skull mug to the mix, which will be a major feature at their upcoming “Hula-ween” party at the end of October. 

Grant’s Flying Pumpkin @ Arsenal Cider House

Award-winning locally made ciders and meads, Arsenal Cider House is a quintessential stop for seasonal drinks. Grant’s Flying Pumpkin would satiate any pumpkin spiced latte lover, and their meads and fruit wines are also fitting for fall. Their Wexford location is right on Soergel’s farm, making it the perfect place to grab a glass and join in one of the many fall activities that the orchard has to offer. 

Jekyl & Hyde 

If you want to celebrate spooky season all year round, you’ve come to the right place. Jekyl & Hyde is a bar in the South Side that has haunted house decor up 365 days a year. Their shots list is all Halloween-inspired, so it’s the perfect place to come for a drink and a fright.  

Cocktails from the Crypt Pop-up Bar

A pop-up bar, this downtown haunt is serving up creepy cocktails and has haunting decor. Spencer Warren, of the Warren Neighborhood Bar, is no stranger to mixing up delicious drinks. He and his team have brought us entertaining and whimsical temporary bars before. This horror-themed hideaway after Halloween will soon transform into Miracle Bar, a winter seasonal spot. 

Ghost tours @ Blackhorse Tavern 

About an hour outside of the city in Brownsville, this tavern visit is the perfect location for a witchy weekend out. The Blackhorse is an immersive historical experience, with a mix of mystery and intrigue along with your food and drink. The house is open to the public after nearly a century, so you can find tickets for either dining experiences or a Halloween ghost tour. A super sinister mix of storytelling and a sensational bespoke menu.   

“Handsome Orange Flip” @ Acacia 

A speakeasy-style prohibition bar, Acacia is whipping up boozy beverages all year-round. Though it might look from the street to be a closed, boarded-up bar, it is what they are crafting inside that brings you through the doors. For the fall season, they have rolled out a few new features, including the Handsome Orange Flip, a gin-based drink with autumnal notes. Their inventive cocktails make for some of the best in the city.     

Campfire Cocktail @ The PA Market 

Campfire Cocktail

A “euro-style” food market, there is something for everyone here with multiple food vendors and shops all in one location. This fall, they have events like s’mores and pours, harvest markets and cider tasting, making for the ultimate October and November food and drink destination. Choose from pumpkin pie martinis, apple cider mimosas or campfire cocktails to get into the seasonal spirit.  

A flight of hard cider @ Threadbare

Hard ciders were practically made for this time of year. Crisp and bubbly, Threadbare is perfecting these sweet fermented drinks and just rolled out with a new four-pack option which is single-serving ciders. Build your own flight so you can mix and match any of their fantastic flavors and be sure to stay for one of the kitchen’s scrumptious dishes, and while the menu may change slightly, they are always committed to local and seasonal ingredients.   

Abbie Synan is a freelance writer who focuses on sustainability initiatives within the tourism industry. Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Synan has been traveling full time since 2013, hopping the globe and visiting over 90 countries while exploring ways to be a more mindful global citizen. She is the sustainable travel expert for Wanderful, an international travel community as well as the content co-lead for Impact Travel Alliance, a global organization educating and inspiring travelers. You can find her sharing stories on her blog, Speck on the Globe or her capturing wanderlust images on Instagram.

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