It is a truth universally acknowledged that a monkey in possession of a fine teacup must be in want of a drink. Pretty sure Jane Austen said something like that in one of her early drafts. Mommy Dearest suggested I use one of these prewar beauties for another chapter in our saga of teacup cocktails and what could a loving son do but oblige her. So please, join me now as we stand and make the Earl Grey MarTeani.
This deceptively simple cocktail was created by Audrey Saunders for her Pegu Club bar in New York. It calls for tea infused gin, but tea makes for relatively quick infusions, so you are only a couple of hours from enjoying this one. Before you start, you’ll need to make the earl grey gin. If you want to burn a whole bottle add 4 tablespoons of quality earl grey loose leaf, shake it up and let it steep a couple of hours, then strain and toss the spent tea. I generally do smaller quantities, in this case I did a quarter bottle with 1 tablespoon.
Once you have your infusion, grab your tins and pop in 1 1/2 ounces of gintea, 1 ounce of simple syrup, 3/4 of an ounce of fresh squeezed lemon juice and 2-3 drops of 18-21 Earl Grey Bitters. Add one egg white or 1/2 an ounce of aquafaba, some ice and shake to the beat of Peter Gabriel’s “Shaking the Tree”, Secret World Live version, preferably. When your tins are good and cold, strain from one to the other and discard the ice. Pop your tins back together and go hard for that dry shake to get the foamy head going. Pour into something pretty, in this case some exquisite, made in Dresden, prewar Schumann China, on loan from the collection of mom. Garnish with a thinly sliced lemon wheel that will slowly sink into the foam and serve.
This drink is so good. Ridiculously complex for its simple recipe. Oddly, the gin almost disappears entirely. It is like a lovely cup of frothy cold tea, with just enough lemon and sugar. We are a platter of cakes away from the best tea party ever here. This one is easy to make, you can skip the bitters if you like, I made it both ways and they are good but subtle and not a deal breaker at all in this one.
There you go another amazing teacup cocktail, which I assure you, is totally a thing. I bet you could make this one without the egg white and just sip your way through all the zoom calls this week. Imagine that, slowly unwinding as the host drones on and on about the thing and how it may affect the stuff if you don’t find a synergistic solution to the problems of tomorrow. You can just smile knowingly, because the answer is in your hand. Stay safe, stay hydrated and stay sane, my friends.