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There are two things that are sure to inspire the happy, cozy feeling we associate with brisk autumn nights: An old-fashioned dinner party with our dearest, loveliest friends and (you guessed it)...tea. While a hot cup of tea is the perfect way to wind down after a night of revelry, we at TeBella Tea Company like to start our gatherings with a tea-infused cocktail or two. If there's one thing we love in the fall, it's our spiced drinks. And so for this week's tea-infused creation, we've got a Masala Chai Old Fashioned for you. In this cocktail, tea is added to a classic Old Fashioned in the form of a large, tea simple syrup ice cube. As the ice cube melts into the drink, it's spicy-sweet flavor will alter the nuances of the drink. The cardamom and cinnamon in the chai bring out vanilla notes in the bourbon. One of the most popular teas in the world, Masala Chai is an Indian black tea mixed with a specific blend of spices: ginger, cardamom, black pepper, cinnamon, and clove. It is intentionally made with a smaller leaf blend, so that it will have a harsher flavor. It is intended to be enjoyed with milk and sugar. Here, we've skipped the milk, but we think the addition of sugar to the recipe helps to heighten the spiciness of Masala Chai.
Masala Chai Old Fashioned(Makes 1 cocktail) Ingredients: 2 oz bourbon 4 dashes Fee Brother’s Whiskey-Barrel Aged Bitters splash of water 2 orange wheels 1 large Masala Chai flavored ice cube* Cinnamon stick for garnish Directions: In an Old Fashioned glass, muddle together the bitters, an orange wheel and a splash of water. Remove the orange wheel from the glass, and add the bourbon. Add the Masala Chai ice cube. Garnish with half an orange wheel and a cinnamon stick. As the ice cube melts into the drink, it will slowly add its flavor to the drink. The nuances of the cocktail will continue to change as the Masala Chai flavor becomes more pronounced, bringing out vanilla notes in the bourbon.
*Masala Chai Flavored Ice Cube:
(Makes 4 large ice cubes)
4 tbsp Masala Chai
4 tbsp raw sugarDirections: Bring 16oz water to a boil then remove from stove. Pour into a measuring cup then add Masala Chai. Steep for 5 minutes then strain into a cup filled with the sugar. Stir until sugar is completely dissolved, then pour mixture into a silicone large ice cube mold. Place in the freezer until the flavored ice cubes have solidified.