5PM is the New Tea Time: Bigelow Does Happy Hour

CTbites Team

Tracy Holleran is a local blogger and founder of The Secret Ingredient Cooking School. She has taken tea to a whole new level with these innovative cocktails. Read on... 

Some like it hot.  Others prefer it iced.  But tea as a mixer for cocktails?  

When I teamed up with Fairfield-based Bigelow Tea to develop recipes using their many brews, that is exactly what we had in mind.  Sure, I developed a wide variety of dishes, both sweet and savory, but these cocktails with a twist seemed to garner most of the attention. 

There are two important steps to making your tea infused cocktail:

1. For maximum flavor, prepare a super-concentrated brew using several tea bags. 

2. Once the tea is lightly sweetened with some sugar, put it into the freezer to chill for about 30-45 minutes. 

In no time, you’re ready to start shaking, stirring, and sipping!  Mix up a batch of these cocktails and this will be one tea party no adult will want to miss!

Here are two of my favorites:

I Love Lemon Gin Fizz

Serves 4

This refreshing drink is perfect for summer!  Bigelow® I Love Lemon™ herb tea gives a new twist to a classic bar drink.

6 Bigelow® I Love Lemon™ tea bags 

1 1/4 cups hot water

1 tablespoon sugar

¾ cup gin

1 cup seltzer

4 strips of lemon or orange peel (for garnish)

Place tea bags into a measuring cup and add 1 ¼ cups hot water. Let brew for 3 minutes. Remove tea bags.

Add sugar and stir until it dissolves. To chill place tea concentrate in the freezer for 30-45 minutes.

To make one cocktail, take three tablespoons (1.5 oz) of the cooled tea and mix it with three tablespoons (1.5 oz) of the gin in a Highball glass.  Top with 5 tablespoons (2.5 oz) of seltzer and serve on the rocks, with a twist of lemon or orange.

Bigelow®  Kisses –n- Cream MarTEAni

Serves 4

This twist on our White Chocolate Kisses™ Mar-tea-ni  uses a touch of cream to bring out even more chocolate flavor.  

4 Bigelow® White Chocolate Kisses™  tea bags 

1¼ cups boiling water
1 tablespoon sugar

4 ounces vanilla vodka

4 ounces whipping cream

¼ cup cocoa powder (optional)

Place tea bags into a measuring cup and add 1¼ cups boiling water. Let brew for 3 minutes. Squeeze  tea bags and remove. 

Add sugar and stir until it dissolves. Chill.

Prepare martini glasses by wetting the rim and dipping in a shallow dish of cocoa powder. 

To make a martini, take two ounces of the cooled sweet tea, one ounce of the vanilla vodka and mix it with one ounce of cream in a shaker. Shake with ice and strain into a martini glass.

For more recipes using Bigelow Tea, check out the recipe section on the Bigelow web site.