As I’ve gotten older, I’ve found a whole world of tea drinks that would make the Mad Hatter proud. Why not stray from the usual offerings at showers and receptions with some of these nifty tipples?
For the spring shower:
Gin Tea & Lemon Fizz
1 cup water
4 teaspoons black tea leaves or 4 tea bags (such as Darjeeling)
1 cup frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
1 cup gin
2 cups sparkling water
In small saucepan, bring 1 cup water to boil. Add tea leaves. Remove from heat. Cover and let steep 15 minutes. Chill overnight. Strain tea mixture into pitcher; discard tea leaves. Add lemonade concentrate and gin, then sparkling water to pitcher; stir to blend. Serve over ice.
For the post-wedding pre-dinner mix and mingle:
Tea simple syrup:
1 cup brewed black tea
3 tablespoons honey
For the Cocktail:
3 fresh sage leaves
2 dashes Peychaud's bitters
3/4 oz. fresh orange juice
1 1/2 oz. rye
1/2 oz. Averna bitters
Make the syrup: Combine the tea and honey in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Reduce until syrupy, about 10 minutes, then let cool.
Make the cocktail: Combine 1/2 ounce tea syrup, 2 sage leaves, the Peychaud's bitters and orange juice in a cocktail shaker. Gently muddle the sage with a muddler or the handle of a wooden spoon. Add the rye and Averna and fill the shaker three-quarters of the way with ice. Give it a short shake, then strain into a martini glass and garnish with the remaining sage leaf. Serves 1.
For you, when putting stamps on the invitation envelopes:
Green Tea Martini
1 1/2 oz. Charbay green tea vodka
1 1/2 oz. Zenn green tea liquor
1 oz. ginger vodka
1 oz. soju or sake
1/2 oz simple syrup
Juice of half lemon
1 dash habanero Tabasco sauce
Crystallized ginger for garnish
Pour ingredients into a cocktail shaker that has been filled with ice. Shake vigorously. Strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a sliver of crystallized ginger. Serves 1.