Growing up we all had our heroes: parents; teachers; athletes and comic book characters. Never did I think the Mad Hatter would be the one I would most emulate. Sure, I don’t have a talking mouse, invisible cat or white rabbit, but I do have my own crew of off-the-wall regulars who guarantee me my own person gong show. By nature, I love to elevate anything I do, so it struck me one sunny afternoon: why not spike the punch bowl at the next tea party? And spike it I did.
We created 7 tea cocktails that fine evening. Three really aren’t worth mentioning but the other 4 brought in combined scores of 8.7/10 or higher. Getting an 11-person team to agree on anything is hard. Getting an 11 person team of tipsy tea drinkers to agree is just plain magic.
In fourth place is the Flap Jack Oolong White Russian with a combined score of 8.7/10. Yes this one blindsided the party. Everyone poop talked this cocktail like there was no tomorrow and I can’t really blame them. An oolong tea blended with maple syrup and walnuts mixed with booze. As it turns out, it’s pure genius.
To make this cocktail:
Steep 1 tbsp of Flapjack Oolong per 8oz (1 cup) of not-quite-boiling water for 4 minutes. Add 2.5 tbsp of sugar to the hot tea. Allow to cool without drinking. (This tea is awesome, so this might not be easy!) Once at room temperature, add 4oz of white rum and 4oz of light cream. Fill two glasses with ice and pour in mixture. It’s rich, creamy and sweet: everything a White Russian is meant to be. If you don’t add the dairy it taste like scotch, but this version only got a combined score of 8.5/10.
In third place with a combined score of 8.9/10, I would like to present to you the Tranquili-Tea Cocktail. It has a simple, light taste and is easy to make. Great for people who like a drink in the afternoon but don’t like to admit it.
Steep 1 heaping tbsp of Tranquili-Tea per 10oz (just over 1 cup) of boiling water for 4 to 5 minutes. Once brewed, add 2 tbsp of simple syrup or liquid sugar and stir well. Allow to cool. In a small pitcher, add 3.5oz of Gin with 8oz of chilled club soda and then mix this into the tea. Fill two glasses with ice and pour in mixture. The combination of chamomile, lavender and mint with the sweetness of the syrup and the boozy taste of gin hits the mark.
Now I’m getting excited because there was a tie for the gold medal with a combined score 9.5/10. The first was another wonderfully simple cocktail, White Tea Champagne.
Steep 1 heaping tbsp of White Tea Champagne per 10oz (just over 1 cup) of not-quite-boiling water for 5 minutes. Add 1 heaping tbsp of honey and allow to cool. Once at room temperature, add 8oz of Prosecco or champagne, 2oz of gin and 1 tsp vanilla extract. Fill two glasses with ice and pour in mixture. This drink is super light and refreshing. The black and red currants, balm leaves, lemongrass and sunflower blossoms make this drink scream summer. It’s perfect for the opening drink to your next deck party or the toast at a bridal party.
Also tied for first place is the Coconut Milky Oolong Mojitos. Don’t let the name fool you,
there’s no milk in this cocktail. After the tea leaves are cured into an oolong they are placed on a screen over a vat of boiling milk to absorb the steam. Then add coconut shavings to top it off. How cool is that?
Steep 1 heaping tbsp of Coconut Milky Oolong per 8oz (1 cup) of not-quite-boiling water for 3 to 4 minutes (depending on how prominent you want the taste of the tea to be). While the tea is cooling, muddle 10-12 mint leaves with 1 tbsp lime juice and 2 tbsp agave nectar or sugar water in a small pitcher. Then fill the pitcher with ice. Add the tea, 4oz of white rum and 8oz soda water. The classic Mojitos hyped on tea.
I’ve always loved hosting tea parties, but drunken tea parties just takes it to another level. It’s not just a matter of welcoming in the chaos. En vino veritas. In other words, if you really want to know what someone thinks, just spike their tea.
This is Mad Hatter signing off.
Tiesta Tea’s Flap Jack Oolong – www.tiestatea.com
Bird Pick’s Tranquili-Tea – www.birdpick.com
Tea Desire’s White Tea Champagne – www.teadesire.com
Tiesta Tea’s Coconut Milky Oolong – www.tiestatea.com
Bombay Sapphire Dry Gin
Bacardi White Rum