You might think this syrup would taste very apple-cinnamon-y. But the addition of cloves gives it spicy, cola-like undertones that reminded me of a really good soda. Which put me in a rum and Coke state of mind, I guess. I filled a glass with ice, added a shot of rum, a few spoonfuls of syrup, and topped the whole thing off with club soda. It tasted nice, but it needed something. Acid. To cut the sweetness and play off the rum, I added the juice of a lime. Depending on your taste, you might want to scale it back to half a lime, but I love citrus.
The overall effect? It doesn't scream apple or spice, but there's a mellow, autumnal rum and Coke thing going on that's quite tasty.
Adapted from David Tanis
(Makes about 1 1/2 cups)
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
1/2 cinnamon stick
4-5 apple cores, or 2 apples peeled and sliced into quarters
Put all ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir until the sugar is dissolved, then let it simmer until it thickens into a syrup, about 10 minutes. Strain and reserve the syrup. Let cool.
Omit the rum and you've got a nice homemade soda.
(Makes 1 drink)
Fill a drinking glass halfway with ice. Add 1 shot (or more, if you like a stiffer drink) of gold rum. Add two spoonfuls of apple-spice syrup, the juice of one lime and stir. Fill halfway with club soda and stir. Taste and readjust the ingredients if you'd like a sweeter or stronger drink.