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This was around spring of 2017 during one of my slow openings and a regular had stopped by after her 9-5. Days were starting to warm up and we were in a conversation of what she wanted instead of the usual old fashioned so I mentioned how I enjoy switching from whiskey to gin around that time of year.
Insert anecdotal story of how gin tastes like rubbing alcohol and she would never touch the stuff ever again. This is where the gears start turning in my head.
I give some banter of "there's always boba instead of alcohol" and that's where the craving of some herbal iced tea kicked. Rather than building her usual old fashioned I tested this out and didn't mention the ingredients until after she had finished at least half of her cocktail.
The quick outbursts of "I hate you! You know I only drink whiskey!" from across the bar as I yelled out it was gin was all the affirmation I needed to know I had done something right.
The citrus-gingery spice from the gin pairing with the sweet-musk of the jasmine liqueur brings out familiarity to a nice refreshing herbal tea and the slight funk out of puh erh pushes down the juniper note but lies somewhere on the tail end of the evolution.
As for the "princess" in the name, that came from another patron that jokingly called out "get the princess her whiskey..." when she gave the glare of contempt at me as I was pouring a beer.
Sometimes it's comfortable to be in an uncomfortable situation when you have the right kind of support.
45 ml or 1.5 oz Spring 44 Mountain Gin
15 ml or .5 oz Greenbar Jasmine Liqueur
60 ml or 2 oz aged puh erh tea or english black tea *
5 ml or barspoon inverse/rich demerara syrup
*To prepare tea: Heat 6oz water to about 190F and add ~3 teaspoons (or 1 bag) of tea and steep for 2 minutes
- Pour all ingredients into a mixing glass
- Chill rocks glass
- Add ice to mixing glass and stir 20 - 25 seconds or until condensation builds
- Clear glass of any excess water
- Pour cocktail into collins
- Express lemon oil on top and around the rim of the glass
- Garnish with edible microflowers or rest spent lemon peel in glass