Arkansas Black Applejack 21-Year might have been a gamble, but one taste and you’ll agree it’s an apple-jackpot. With 25 pounds’ worth of pippins per bottle, aged for that winning number of years in French oak barrels, this is not your Granny Smith’s brandy. Notes of toasted meringue, coconut, and—you guessed it—apple pie—make neat the new a la mode. The recipe pays tribute to one Arthur “Skipper” Ford, a manager at Dole Fruit Company in his day with a weekend passion for both sailing and home brew making. With his own ranch of heirloom apple varieties, including future brand-namesake Arkansas Black, Skipper perfected his cider and farmhouse applejacks. Many years later, great-granddaughter Samantha and husband John (Johnny?) decided to reseed the family legacy…and look how it’s blossomed!

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