As you might have guessed by now – I love a good cocktail, and have been exploring Birmingham bars for the past few years to find my favourite drinks in the city. What has begun to interest me more recently however, is the art of making cocktails at home; both nailing the classics and creating my own concoctions. So when Fortnum & Mason asked me to create a cocktail recipe using one of their famous loose leaf teas, I was definitely up for the challenge!
Though the F&M tea range is certainly extensive, it didn’t take me long to reach for the rose pouchong. When you open the tin of this stunning loose leaf tea it’s like putting your nose into a box of Turkish delight – a rich yet delicate flavour that is both sophisticated yet harks back to childhood. In true Paul Hollywood stlye, I couldn’t talk about rose without mentioning that it can be a difficult flavour to work with – but get the balance right and it’s really worth it! I paired the rose flavour with homemade raspberry vodka, and before trying the tea I was worried it would be overpowered. I was pleased to discover, however, that although delicate, this tea can really hold its own, so here’s my recipe for the perfect raspberry and rose mar-tea-ni:
For two cocktails…
A handful of fresh raspberries
60ml raspberry flavoured vodka (homemade or a brand such as Absolut)
1 tbsp Fortnum and Mason rose pouchong tea in 50ml of water
A squeeze of lemon
Fever Tree tonic water to top up
Handful of ice
Brew the tea leaves in the hot water for about 5 minutes. In the meantime, muddle the raspberries in a cocktail shaker and add the ice, vodka and a squeeze of lemon. Once the tea is brewed, add this to the cocktail shaker and put on the lid firmly. SHAKE. Strain the drink into the chilled martini glasses – some raspberry pulp should make it through but not whole lumps. Top the glasses with the tonic water and garnish with a rose petal or raspberry. DRINK!