The Maple Leaf is a simple and tasty spin on the Whiskey Sour. Maple syrup is used as the sweetener and that flavor mixes agreeably with the bourbon while the lemon offsets its sweetness. The result is a sour with a bit more depth and complexity. One that refreshes while complementing these lazy warm evenings. Though, really, once a chill begins to creep in I imagine it'll fit in fine there as well. Also, this one is ridiculously easy. Three ingredients, that's it.
I came across the Maple Leaf while trying to work my way through the Anvil 100 a few years ago. The list changes* and I had two versions at the time but fortunately there was a lot of overlap. It was a pretty fun endeavor (there are still a few left to try), full of pleasant surprises like the Monte Carlo, the Tailspin and the Fedora. The list is thorough and full of classics, with more than a few off-the-beaten-path drinks. I'm not sure that anyone would be a fan of all 100 of them but as Anvil co-owner Bobby Heugel says, the list wasn't intended to be viewed as the 100 best cocktails ever. Rather, an introduction to a bunch of great, historic drinks. Or, as one of the lists says "libations we feel you should try at least once in your life...for better or worse." The Maple Leaf is definitely for the better.
Maple Leaf - unknown origin
2 oz Bourbon
3/4 oz Lemon Juice
3/4 oz Maple Syrup (I usually use something dark)
"Shake and strain into a cocktail glass filled with crushed ice. Drink on a porch with an old dog."
*There have been a couple of updates to the list over the years. I didn't realize until I looked for the link that they're now on version 2.3. Drinks are still grouped under categories like 'sour and short', 'boozy and alluring', 'bitter and bold' etc., but there's some new ones on there. Now I have to figure out how to mix up a Billy Wilkerson Topper. And a Moss Rose. Though I think I'll start with a Fernet Daiquiri.