Learn How to Make a First Light Cocktail with Meredith Collins of Along Came a Cider

Even if you’re steadily making your way through your home bar cart, we’ll bet you still have some gin squirreled away in the freezer and a few ounces of Aperol or Campari. If so, you’re all set to make a First Light, this refreshing, bright cider cocktail that comes to us from Meredith Collins of the blog, Along Came a Cider. Meredith, who has put together a number of awesome pairing guides for Cider Culture in the past, has a wonderful affinity for teasing out flavors and textures in craft cider. We love how she’s applied those same skills to this grapefruit-y cocktail. We’ll be mixing one of these up for our Friday happy hour, and maybe even at brunch!

Meredith Collins’ First Light Cider Cocktail


  • 3/4 ounce gin
  • 3/4 ounce Aperol (or another bitter aperitif, like Campari)
  • 2 ounces of fresh grapefruit juice
  • 2 dashes grapefruit bitters
  • Sparkling hard cider


  1. Fill a shaker with ice and prep a rocks glass or wine glass with a large ice cube.
  2. Pour the first four ingredients into the shaker. Shake the gin, Aperol, juice and bitters vigorously.
  3. Strain these ingredients into your glass, then top with cider. Stir gently to combine.

Ready for a second round? Check out the Whiskey Cider Sour cocktail from Jennie Dorsey next!

  • Video and recipe: Meredith Collins