Tea cocktails are all the fashion lately from Maison Premiere’s oolong-laced American Pharoah in New York to the matcha-fueled Midori Sour from downtown L.A.’s Ace Hotel. There’s loads of room for creativity in the case of mixing tea and spirits, due to hundreds of various tea varietals round world. Many specialists recommend infusing spirits with tea for a good steadiness of flavors since infusions assist retain the brew’s character with out blotting out nuances within the firm of stronger drinks. Tea-infused cocktails—from non-alcoholic sodas to boozier blends—are sometimes simply the factor for smaller, extra intimate gatherings.

Having a massive celebration or plenty of family over? Punches are a enjoyable and stylish alternative for the vacations and residential entertaining all year long. Bound to fire up some dialog, tea punches are a energetic centerpiece, free you as much as host (somewhat than fixing drinks behind the scenes) and have a centuries-old pedigree, relationship again to the 1700s. The earliest punches have been made with green tea, its astringency serving the position of bitters. By the time the daddy of American mixology, Jerry Thomas, got here alongside within the 19th century, tea was used as an alternative of water in traditional punches. Vintage cookbooks inform the identical story, with good previous standbys like Fannie Farmer together with afternoon tea punches in her normal repertoire.

Inspired by historical past and a ardour for tea, I dug up this Civil War-era concoction for a fall equinox celebration, making a few changes to a time-tested recipe from cocktail historian David Wondrich’s Punch: The Delights and Dangers of the Flowing Bowl. Named after one of many longest-serving ships within the Navy, the united statesS. Richmond Punch will make sure you add a little bit of intrigue and sparkle to your subsequent shindig. What, in any case, livens up a celebration like a 150-year-old tea punch?

The U.S.S. Richmond Punch Recipe (tailored from David Wondrich)


  • 6 lemons
  • 1 ½ cups of superfine sugar
  • 1 pint strong-brewed black tea (Joseph Wesley Black Tea Lapsang Souchong provides a clean, well-rounded biscuity taste and smokiness)
  • 1 pint Dark Jamaican rum (Wondrich recommends Smith & Cross or Myers’s; I swapped in a 12-year previous golden El Dorado)
  • 1 pint very particular or very particular previous pale Cognac (Armagnac additionally works fantastically)
  • 1 pint Ruby port (Graham’s Six Grapes)
  • 4 oz Grand Marnier
  • 1 ½ cups Club soda or Champagne


Place a 2- or 3-quart bowl of water within the freezer and let freeze in a single day. Peel 6 lemons with a swivel-bladed vegetable peeler, attempting to not get any of the white pith. In bowl, muddle the peels with 1 ½ cups of superfine sugar and let stand for an hour for the lemon oil to leach out. Juice the peeled lemons and add the juice to the sugar combination, together with the tea. Strain out the peels and pour into a 1-gallon container. Add the rum, cognac, port and Grand Marnier, and refrigerate for no less than 1 hour.

To serve, unmold the block of ice into a 2-gallon punch bowl. Add the chilled punch inventory and prime off with the membership soda (or, if feeling harmful, Champagne). Garnish with grated nutmeg and 1 seeded lemon sliced thinly. Serves 20. Bon voyage!

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