This Bourbon Ice Tea is a result of my quest to find a few bourbon drinks that I actually enjoy. If you’ve followed along with me on this blog you know how much I love my vodka drinks. But it’s time to try other spirits and I’m bound and determined that one of them will be bourbon!
To me, bourbon has a very strong, distinct flavor so I need to add sweetness and something else to it to make it drinkable. So this time around, I tried some ice tea and simple syrup to sweeten it. Oh, but wait… not any regular ol’ simple syrup will do. I made two different ones. First, a honey and mint simple syrup and another one made with maple syrup and mint. Honestly I couldn’t decide which I preferred. They both added a bit different element to the drink. The maple syrup was stronger, more maplely flavored (obviously) while the honey was more mellow and less pronounced. Both went well with the bourbon. But guess what I did after trying them both? I combined them… and it was GREAT! So my vote goes to a combination of honey and maple syrup with mint.
Let me take a moment to talk about the bourbon I used. Bootlegger 21 New York Bourbon Whiskey from Prohibition Distillery. When my husband and I were in NYC recently, we had dinner with Brian, one of the founders of Prohibition Distillery, and he was kind enough to give us a bottle of their newly released bourbon. When I got home I did an informal taste test. What I noticed about Bootlegger 21 bourbon is how smooth it was compared to a couple other brands I had in the cupboard. I’m not a bourbon on the rocks drinker…but if I was, I might just choose this one…and perhaps wait for the ice to melt a bit! Also, I know I’ve talked about it before, but wanted to mention again…be sure to check out their vodka. It’s fantastic! Try it in a pomegranate lemon-tini...so delish!
So back to today’s Bourbon Ice Tea cocktail. I made a batch of ice tea with Tazo Organic Darjeeling black tea and put it in the fridge to chill. Then a made the simple syrup. The first with half cup water, half cup honey and a handful of mint. The second with a half cup water, half cup maple syrup and a handful of mint. Use whichever you think you might prefer…or try them both! Or better yet, after you’ve tried them both, shake it up a bit and go for a third and mix the syrups!
Whichever way you choose to make it, this Bourbon Ice Tea is pretty fantastic!