january 8, 2020
Torn between having a nice hot cup of tea, because it’s winter, and a refreshing cold beverage, because it’s 60-something degrees for days on end, I decided to celebrate both drinks with a cocktail using fragrant jasmine tea, pomegranate juice and gin, shaken over ice.
The heady aroma of jasmine tea brings back memories of my first cups in the Asian restaurants I frequented in graduate school. If there had been more calories in those pots of tea, they could have been my entire meal since this was a taste experience I had never before enjoyed and the meal that followed was always good but the highly spiced foods erased the delicate flavor of jasmine. That aroma carries me back every time to when life was simpler and a cup of hot tea was sipped with intention, slowly.
This cocktail is not too sweet. Petals from the jasmine flower are used to flavor the green tea and what follows is a naturally bright sweetness.The tea syrup lasts for weeks in the fridge, as does unsweetened pomegranate juice. So all is at the ready when company comes. If you lack gin, other spirits substitute well.
Garnish if you like with pomegranate arils at the bottom of your fancy glass and a thin wedge of lime for squeezing into the finished drink.
I am hoping for snow, soon. I’ll have a steaming mug of hot jasmine tea and reminisce. Winter is not winter without a little magic.
Jasmine Pomegranate Cocktail
recipe by Michele Humlan, The Good Eats Company
for one cocktail; jasmine syrup keeps for weeks in the refrigerator
12 ounces filtered water
1 tablespoon loose jasmine green tea leaves
2 tablespoons sugar
2 ounces gin
1 ounce unsweetened pomegranate juice
optional garnishes : pomegranate arils (seeds), thin lime wedges
- Bring water near to boil in small nonreactive (stainless steel) saucepan.
- Off heat, swirl in the tea leaves and let steep 4 minutes.
- Strain into jar with the sugar, stir and chill well until ready to use.
- For one cocktail, pour gin, pomegranate juice and 1 ½ ounces jasmine tea syrup (3 tablespoons) into cocktail shaker or jar filled with ice.
- Shake and then strain into glass filled with a few pomegranate arils, if using, and garnish with thin wedge of lime at rim of glass.