Christmas is finally here!
I am bringing the cheer in my favorite way possible: a new Tea Cocktail!
This one is a riff on the classic Wassail, a beverage traditionally drunk as an integral part of wassailing, a Medieval English Christmastide drinking ritual intended to ensure a good cider apple harvest the following year.
My version utilizes one of our bestselling blends, Crimson Punch, to bring a bit of sour to the sweet, boozy, spicy libation. I call it simply:
Tea Recipe: CRIMSON PUNCH WASSAIL
12 whole cloves
6 whole allspice
1/2 inch fresh ginger root, peeled and sliced
3 cinnamon sticks
12 whole white peppercorns
1 gallon fresh apple cider
6 ounces freshly steeped Crimson Punch tea
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
10-12 ounces bourbon
ground nutmeg (for garnish)
1 cinnamon stick per drink (for garnish)
To make the Wassail mixer, wrap the cloves, allspice, ginger, cinnamon sticks, and peppercorns in cheesecloth and tie with kitchen string. Combine the cider, brown sugar, and spice bag in a large pot over high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes. Add Crimson Punch tea.
For each serving, put one ounce of the bourbon into a mug and fill it with hot Wassail mixer. Garnish with a dusting of nutmeg and a cinnamon stick.
(NOTE: The Wassail mixer can be stored for several days in a covered container in the refrigerator. If you like lots of spice, you can make it a day ahead and leave the spice bag in the container overnight.)