Tea is so hot right now - and I don't just mean that literally.
I've had tea on my mind thanks, in part, to Nakiya, who is a huge fan, and who has been posting about tea like crazy on Facebook. With those posts settled in my subconcious, a March 2012 Martha Stewart Living article about Bellocq, a fancy new tea atelier in New York, rang a few alarm bells. Tea is trendy.
Which means that tea cocktails have the potential to be super trendy. Tea offers so much flexibility in terms of flavor...and it also offers so many ways to infuse a cocktail with the extra little oomph that "artisanal" ingredients provide. Hipster bartenders must love it.
Of course, one of nice things about using tea in drinks is that it's easy to make and use at home. These recipes from Veetea, using loose leaves, are all fairly simple and they sound genuinely good. And how cool is this - Tea Forte (a brand I like already) sells cocktail infusion tea bags. That is some sweet product development right there.
And, of course, there's the summertime joy that is sweet tea vodka.
I've been a fan of tea since I was a kid - it's what my dad drinks instead of coffee, which he gave up when he quit smoking, waaaay back in the '70s. I've always thought of it as a bracing morning drink and also as a sweet match for mid-afternoon crustless sandwiches and pastries.
And isn't afternoon tea really just a non-boozy early cocktail hour, anyway? It's only natural that we welcome tea to the adult portion of the evening. So welcome, tea. Welcome to happy hour.