Poet Tea Cocktail ~ Tell it Slant
Makes 2 cocktails.
This is an approachable but nuanced cocktail, perfect for a summer afternoon spent reading or visiting with a friend in your garden. Its foundation is our Poet Tea which is a blend of herbs and flowers from small New England farms — and our tribute to the poet Emily Dickinson.
For this cocktail we infuse vodka and also a honey syrup with the tea (honey amplifies the tea’s delicate floral flavor). Both components can be made up to several days ahead. Cover and store the vodka at room temperature and the syrup in the fridge. You will have left over syrup, which is delicious in iced tea or homemade sodas.
1¾ cup vodka
1 tablespoon (heaping) Poet Tea
1 strip lemon peel, no pith
Put the ingredients into a clean container. Stir once or twice, cover, and let infuse for 2 hours. Smell the vodka and taste a drop to be sure that it has taken on the aroma of the tea. You can infuse it for longer, but not more than 3 hours total, to avoid extracting bitter flavors. Strain twice through a fine mesh strainer into a clean jar with a tight-fitting lid. Discard the tea solids.
Poet honey syrup:
¼ cup honey
1 tablespoon Poet Tea
½ cup boiling water
Put the honey and tea into a heat-tolerant measuring cup. Add the boiling water and stir, then let the mixture steep for 10 minutes or until barely warm. Strain through a fine mesh strainer into a clean jar with a tight-fitting lid. Discard the tea solids.
For the cocktail:
3 ounces Poet-infused vodka
3 ounces Poet honey syrup
1½ ounces fresh lemon juice
½ ounce elderflower liqueur, such as St. Germaine
Tiny pinch salt
Edible flowers, for garnish, optional
Set out two coupe glasses.
Put the cocktail ingredients into a mixing glass. Add ¼ cup ice and stir for 30 seconds. Strain half into each coupe. Garnish with edible flower petals* and serve immediately.
*Be sure to refer to a reliable guide for which flowers are edible.
We also love making this cocktail with the added silkiness of a flip. To do that you need to add egg white and shake, instead of stir, the cocktail.
Put the cocktail ingredients into a shaker with 2 ice cubes. Shake for 20 seconds. Add 1–2 tablespoons egg white, then shake again for 10–15 seconds before straining into the glasses.