A hot toddy, the quintessential cold-weather cure-all usually contains brown booze, honey, citrus and spices. This updated take blends white tea with gin for a mugful that’s bracing and soothing at the same time.
Blooming Gin Toddy
¾ cup boiled water
1 flowering white tea bud (available at specialty tea shops)
1 oz gin
½ oz spiced honey syrup (recipe below)
1 cinnamon stick
Put water on to boil. Place flowering tea bud in a warmed heatproof glass or mug. When water comes to a rolling boil, gently pour over tea bud. Allow flower to steep and bloom, 4 to 6 minutes. Add gin and syrup. With a peeler, pull off a long strip of zest from a lemon, twist it to mist oils over surface of drink, then drop in the cup. Squeeze in juice from one lemon wedge. Stir with a cinnamon stick and discard.
Makes 1 drink
Spiced Honey Syrup
Place ½ cup honey, ½ cup water, 6 whole cloves and 1 cinnamon stick in a small saucepan. Bring to a gentle boil over medium heat. Simmer, stirring for 5 minutes. Let cool. Strain through a fine sieve. Syrup will keep well in a sealed, sterilized jar in the fridge for at least 2 weeks.
Makes ¾ cup syrup for 12 drinks