Why tea is the new cocktail…
I discovered two things in quick succession a few days ago:
1) That it is officially National Afternoon Tea Week (yes there’s an actual week, and also a tea website that gives you recommendations for your area AND a to top it off, Muddy has a feature of five lovely tea shops in Northants…)
2) That teatime is cocktail time – because all the best artisan teas work brilliantly in a cocktail blend (to which my reaction was a bit, YEH..!)
This piece of insider information came to me courtesy of Muddy Kent who had been speaking to Francesca Booth, an irrepressible New Yorker (who has a bit of Italian heritage thrown into the mix for extra pizzazz) and trained patisserie chef. One day, Francesca was hit with this thought: Wouldn’t it be amazing if there was a range of tea designed to pair with pastries, desserts and savoury courses – in the same way you’d pair a beautiful wine with each course? And (the beautifully branded) Dandylion Teas was born.
Dandylion Teas are a range of luxury hand blended artisan teas – each with their own distinct flavour. And in that same vein, Francesca points out sticking different flavours in different cocktails makes sense as tea contains subtle spice notes, as well as tannins (like wine), and delicate aromas.
But enough with the science bit, already! Let’s cut to the cocktails shall we?
Francesca says: ‘To create a cheeky cocktail; infuse your chosen tea blend to a freshly boiled simple sugar syrup for roughly 10 minutes and leave to cool. Then add your cooled infused tea syrup to your cocktail mixer of choice and enjoy. Add as little or as much tea as you like, depending on how strong a flavour you fancy. Here are my ten Dandylion Teas favourites to get you inspired.’
Tea: MELON D’EAU MINT
Tastes great in: gin & tonic, or gin & Lemonade; mix with gin or equally fab in a mojito style cocktail mix with rum.
Tea: CONTESSA GREY
Tastes great in: a Martini; mix with vodka or equally fab in a gunfire cocktail mix with rum.
Tea: FRASIER CAKE
Tastes great in: a spritzer; mix with Prosecco, white or rosé wine.
Tea: COFFEE FRANGIPANE
Tastes great in: a short cocktail, mix with Kaluha or equally fab in a Martini mix with vodka.
Tea: PAIN D’ÉPICES CHAI
Tastes great in: mulled wine, mix with red wine.
Tastes great in: a short cocktail; mix with amaretto or bourbon.
Tea: CHAMOMILE MEADOW
Tastes great in: Martini; mix with vodka.
Tea: SICILIAN CITRON
Tastes great in: mixed drinks; mix with gin.
Tea: ROOIBOS DREAM
Tastes great in: cocktails; mix with rum.
Tea: DARJEELING VIN SANTO
Tastes great in: short drinks; mix with rum or amaretto.
Now, do excuse me while I brew my cuppa…