A Happy Trio of Hot, Boozy Pairings
Here at the KaTom kitchen, we’ve been working on our Mixologist merit badge, combining this year’s cru of Girl Scout Cookies with adult beverages. Why not? We like crafts. We also like cookies.
Cookiewise, we ordered “one of everything.” Seven varieties were delivered to our address – the last line of which, we have deduced, must read “In Some Markets, USA” since the other varieties (Cranberry Citrus Crisps, Lemonades, Toffee-tastics, gluten-free Trios, and Thanks-A-Lots) were not available here (thanks a lot).
Just as well: even seven different cookies can make for a gigantic matrix of pairing possibilities. None of the kazillion beer-and-cookie, wine-and-cookie, or conventional cocktail-and-cookie pairings out there do a thing for us, however; we tend to think that if people really liked eating cookies with their cocktails, bars wouldn’t serve salty snacks. So that culled the field.
The Girl Scout Cookie aggregated distribution window is January to April. Although we’re catching the tail end of it at KaTom, the weather here is still freezing. Did I mention we like campfires here, too? And booze in our tea? Polly, put the kettle on!
We’re posting the recipes for each of these hand-built tea drinks; meantime, know that all hot toddies, punches, and grogs can benefit from warming the mug or glass to the temperature of the hottest liquid you plan to pour into it. Unless otherwise indicated, brew the tea in a separate vessel, then add it to the mixed liquor in the warmed serving glass or cup.
Our Three Hot Tea Cocktail-and-Girl Scout Cookie Pairings
Flower of Jamaica Punch: Hibiscus tea, silver tequila, agave syrup, cinnamon bark
+ Thin Mints
We started quite a little hissing contest around here by disclosing that here are actually two kinds of thin mints: Little Brownie Bakers of Lousiville, Ky., made ours. ABC Bakers, a division of Virginia-based Interbake Foods, makes the superior mintier and less spongey ones. “Girls,” we finally said in our outside voice, “You’re both pretty!” Hibiscus – flor de Jamaica in Spanish – is a top-five soft-drink flavor in Mexico. Serve the tea in a glass so you don’t miss the party; silver (as in tequila and as in drinkware) lights up that glorious color and tangy, floral taste to full pageant sparkle while the cinnamon stick keeps the drink in line for its walk down the Thin Mint runway.
Dee Dee Tea: Earl Grey tea, rye whiskey, elderflower liqueur, lemon zest
+ Savannah Smiles
These lemon-tasting almondy half-moons are dusted with powdered sugar but aren’t soft and melty like the wedding cookies they otherwise resemble. This makes them ideal partners for hot tea, especially Earl Grey, whose dry finish and bergamot (an Italian orange) flavor balance the whiskey and liqueur’s sweetness. Lemon, orange, and elderflower essences make a sort of bouquet out of the whole thing – if a bouquet could bring on a buzz.
Canadian Samoa: Black tea, dark rum, maple syrup, lemongrass, crystallized ginger
(Photo, top of page.) Toffee, coconut and chocolate (dark, in the batch we got; milk chocolate tops the Samoas made by the other of the two bakeries used by the Girl Scouts): these are the heavyweights in the famously chewy Samoa ring. We fortified an already stout black tea with pure and bracing maple syrup from Quebec and cheap dark rum. That stood up to the cookie, all right. Now the whole setup needed bounce, so we steeped dried lemongrass in the brewed tea, then strained it out before pouring it over the rum and tossing in fiery crystals of chopped ginger FTW!
- 1/2 ounce Agave Syrup
- 1 to 3 ounces Tequila
- 3 ounces Hot Hibiscus Tea, Brewed Double-Strength
- 1 stick Cinnamon Bark
Warm an 8-ounce glass or teacup. Into a metal mixing tumbler, pour the agave syrup and tequila. Seal with metal mixing cap. Dry shake (without ice) to mix and aerate without diluting. Strain (mesh) into glass or mug. Add the tea. Stir thoroughly. Garnish with cinnamon stick. Serve with Girl Scout Thin Mints. Announce the drink by name when serving it.
1/2 ounce Edlerflower Liqueur
1 to 3 ounces Rye Whiskey
3 ounces Hot Earl Grey Tea, Brewed Double-Strength
Zest of Half a Lemon
Warm an 8-ounce glass or teacup. Into a metal mixing tumbler, pour the elderflower liqueur and whiskey. Seal with metal mixing cap. Dry shake (without ice) to mix and aerate without diluting. Strain (mesh) into glass or mug. Add the tea. Stir thoroughly. Garnish with lemon zest. Serve with Girl Scout Savannah Smiles. Announce the drink by name when serving it.
- 1 ounce Pure Maple Syrup
- 1 to 3 ounces Dark Rum
- 3 ounces Hot Brewed Black Tea, Steeped with 2 ounces Dried Lemongrass, then strained
- 2 ounces Chopped, Crystallized Ginger
Warm an 8-ounce glass or teacup. Into a metal mixing tumbler, pour the maple syrup and rum. Seal with metal mixing cap. Dry shake (without ice) to mix and aerate without diluting. Strain (mesh) into glass or mug. Add the tea. Stir thoroughly. Garnish with ginger. Serve with Girl Scout Samoas. Announce the drink by name when serving it.