Sunday, January 05, 2014

A Downton Abbey-Inspired Cocktail of the Week: An Earl Grey Gin Cocktail

Hear ye, hear ye...that program that we colonists have grown to love return for a fourth season tonight.  How will Lady Mary cope as a single mother...with only a household of servants to help out?  What cause will Matthew's grieving mother take up next?  Which outfit will Cora wear to dinner? In just a few hours, we'll know...

Such an auspicious occasion cries out for a dignified oh-so-English tipple.  When I think of British beverages, two leap to mind.  Early Grey breakfast cup most mornings. (Two lumps and milk, please.)  And gin.  But none of that cucumber-infused boutique stuff.  Dry London gin. My favorite is Bombay Sapphire...there's a picture of Queen Victoria on the label.  Can't be much more authentic than that.

This cocktail, inspired by several I found online, combines the two.  Serve it in your best cocktail class-a 1920's style coupe if you have it.  After a couple of these, you'll be throwing off bon mots that would make the Dowager Countess envious.

Earl Grey Gin Cocktail
Makes one cocktail.

In saucepan, heat 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water over medium heat until the sugar dissolves.  Remove from the heat and add two Early Grey tea bags.  Or even better, 1 tablespoon of loose Earl Grey tea in a tea ball.  Let cool completely and strain into a small jar or bottle.  This is the Earl Grey simple syrup the recipe calls for.

2 ounces London dry gin
1/2 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 ounce Earl Grey simple syrup

Combine all ingredients in an ice-filled shaker.  Shake until well-combined and the outside of the shaker is frosty.  Strain into a cocktail glass.  Garnish with witty repartee and a disdain for the working class.