It’s International Tea Day, which means it’s time to get experimental with our favourite brews.
For the most part, we as a nation like our cuppas with a dash of milk and a sugar or two (depending on how militant you are), but there are plenty of ways you can level up your tea.
Given how warm the weather is right now, you might like to try one of these delicious and refreshing tea cocktails, which utilise the bags you’ve already got alongside some alcoholic ingredients.
They’re all iced – as any good cocktail should be – and packed with fruit and tea to cool you down while you chill in the garden. How civilised.
Earl Grey and gin cocktail
This one’s nice and easy, and you should already have the ingredients at home.
The ingredients you’ll need are:
- Earl Grey tea bags or loose leaf
- Lavender sprigs (optional)
For this fragrant beauty, brew Earl Grey as you normally would and pop it in the fridge.
Then, take your honey and boil in a saucepan with water – about two parts water to one part honey. Leave this to simmer until it’s warm and runny. Then pop in the fridge too.
Add a shot of gin and some ice to a cocktail shaker, along with a drizzle of your honey simple syrup. Add tea to fill, and give it a good shake.
You can use flavoured gins with this to get a different taste, and garnish with lavender sprigs if you have any kicking about for even more floral notes.
Bourbon spiced iced tea
Perfect on a warm evening, this cocktail is a take on the deep south favourite iced tea.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Sugar (optional)
Make a large batch of tea, which you can sweeten with sugar if you wish. Pop this in the fridge to chill.
When you’re ready to drink, fill each glass with ice, and add a shot of bourbon and a shot of limoncello.
Garnish with a wedge of lemon, and enjoy.
Peach iced tea bellinis
Bellinis are great, but these iced tea versions are even more refreshing (and topical).
- Tinned peaches
- Prosecco or other sparkling wine
Make an iced tea as you normally would with teabags and water, putting in the fridge to chill.
While it’s cooling down, blitz a tin of peaches in the blender along with a couple of spoonfuls of sugar (unless the peaches are in syrup, in which case it’s fine without).
Put some of the peach puree into your tea and give it a good mix, before topping up with champagne.
Berry mint cooler
Get some of your five-a-day with this cold tea cocktail, and use up those mint leaves at the back of the cupboard.
You’ll need the following ingredients:
- Normal, green, peppermint or hibiscus tea (one bag per glass of iced tea)
- Fresh berries of your choosing
- Mint leaves
- Alcohol of your choosing (white rum works well)
Make your batch of tea, adding berries into your jug or pitcher to allow them to steep.
Feel free to get creative with which type you use. Hibiscus is beautiful, but peppermint is also something a little different for a cocktail.
Muddle some mint leaves and pop these in, along with one shot of your chosen spirit per cup of tea.
Serve over plenty of ice.
These look super cute in mason jars, with a reusable straw for sustainable sipping.
This cocktail makes good use of those infuser bottles we all have lying around, and although the recipe – from The Spruce Eats – is somewhat fiddly, the results are beautiful.
What you’ll need:
- Green tea bags or leaves
- Salted pistachios
- Chamomile bitters or other type of bitters if you have it (optional)
The recipe goes in steps. First off you want to put your tea and gin into an infuser bottle or jar. Leave this in the fridge for at least two hours before straining.
Next, it’s time to make your syrup. You want the same amount of honey, pistachios, and water for this. Bring all the ingredients to a boil in the pan, then turn the heat off before covering.
Once the pan has been left for a few hours, strain out the pistachios and save the syrup in an airtight jar in the fridge.
When you’re ready to drink, put your tea infused gin (one shot per person), syrup (one dash per person), the juice of a lemon, and a dash or two of bitters if you have it into a cocktail shaker, then shake with ice.
Serve over crushed ice, but be aware this is quite a strong one, so it’s more of a sipper than a session cocktail.
Do you have great recipes you’d like to share?
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