Bourbon Iced Tea Cocktail

Bourbon Iced Tea Cocktail
At the end of a long day, there’s nothing quite like a summery bourbon iced tea cocktail to cheer the eye and lighten the heart while the sun goes down. This beautiful, golden beverage is the epitome of refreshing with its notes of citrus, mint, and ginger, and is flexible enough to work brilliantly with a range of iced teas.
While this bourbon iced tea cocktail can be ready to sip in just a few minutes, it does take a little planning so you have all the ingredients at hand and aren’t delayed at the last minute by frantically trying to brew tea or dash out to the garden for fresh herbs.

Bourbon Iced Tea Cocktail

Step 1: Ice Cubes

This cocktail is best served icy cold, so make sure those ice cube trays are filled the night before so they’re ready to go when you’re ready to start mixing.

Step 2: Simple Syrup

Simple syrup is an essential part of this cocktail as it provides smooth sweetness without any grittiness from granulated sugar. Place equal parts granulated sugar and water into a saucepan and stir regularly while heating just until the sugar dissolves completely. Remove from the heat, cool, then chill until ready to use. I like to make up a large bottle ahead of time so I always have some on hand.

Step 3: Tea

This cocktail works particularly well with a citrusy tea such as Fog Cutter Black Tea with lemon, Royal Wedding Black Tea with lemon and elderflower, or Comfort Blend Black Tea with orange and cinnamon.
Simply brew the tea to your desired strength (1 teaspoon tea to 1 cup boiling hot water for 3-5 minutes is a good general rule of thumb). Strain, cool, and chill until ready to serve. Or, if you're really thinking ahead, cold brew your tea the night before or morning of.

Step 4: Fresh Herbs

I used fresh spearmint to garnish my bourbon iced tea cocktail, but you could also use peppermint, lemon balm, pineapple sage, or lemongrass. They’ll all provide a lovely fragrance to enhance the pleasurable experience of sipping this delicious drink. The day you’re going to make the cocktails, cut the herbs you’ll be using and keep them fresh in a glass of cool water until you’re ready to use.

Step 5: Lemon Juice and Slices

I really love fresh lemon in this cocktail because the tartness is so delicious with the warm, mellow nature of the bourbon, but you could also use mandarin, lime, or orange. You’ll need 1 teaspoon of lemon juice per glass and 1-2 slices of lemon for garnish. I find that 1-2 lemons are sufficient.

Step 6: Bourbon

Make sure you have enough for 1 ounce (that's 2 tablespoons) of bourbon per glass. If there are only two of you toasting the end of the day you can get away with a mini. Any more than two people and you’ll need a larger bottle.

Step 7: Green Ginger Wine or Ginger Liqueur

This last step is optional, but I love it for the extra kick it provides in a light, citrusy, and minty drink. If you don’t fancy ginger, leave it out. The bourbon iced tea cocktail can stand up just fine without it.
When you’ve collected all your ingredients, simply divide ice cubes, lemon slices, and mint leaves between all the glasses, then combine the remaining ingredients in a pitcher and stir well. Pour over ice and serve immediately.
For other delectable bourbon cocktails, try our Cinnamon Spiced Bourbon, autumnal Pumpkin Spice Cider Cocktail, or refreshing Vanilla Mint Bourbon Iced Green Tea.

Bourbon Iced Tea Cocktail

Serves 2

  • 4 tablespoons strong black tea
  • 2 oz bourbon whiskey
  • 2 tablespoons simple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons green ginger wine (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 6-8 ice cubes
  • 2 thin lemon slices, for garnish
  • 2 sprigs fresh mint, for garnish

Brew tea, set aside to cool. Or, cold brew for 6-8 hours.
In pitcher, add bourbon, simple syrup, green ginger wine, and fresh lemon juice. Stir to combine. Add cooled tea.
Divide ice cubes between two glasses and pour equal amounts of cocktail over each. Garnish with lemon slices and mint leaves and serve immediately.

Krista Bjorn

Canadian born Krista Bjorn has been traveling and exploring for over 20 years and loves every crazy, embarrassing, and wonderful moment. She's lived in Russia and Portugal and now makes her home in beautiful Queensland, Australia, saving her pennies for her next trip. Her food, photography and travel blog is Rambling Tart.
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