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Helen McGinn gives verdict on a selection of the latest boozy teas as the sales of alcoholic teas rise. Pictured: Noveltea Earl Grey Tea with Gin
  • Around 100 millions cups of brew are consumed daily across Britain
  • Sales of alcoholic teas are on the rise as nation combines their favourite drinks
  • Helen McGinn gives verdict on a selection of the latest boozy teas 

There are few things Brits love more than a brew, with 100 million cups consumed daily. But most of us are partial to the odd tipple or two as well.

Now, the latest trend in booze is bringing the nation’s favourite drinks together, with sales of tea-infused alcohol on the rise. Everything from gin and vodka to rum and whisky is finding its way into brew-based blends, making teatime a far more grown-up affair.

Some are made to be taken neat over ice, while others are best served warmed up or used as an ingredient in a cocktail.

And when it comes to the blends used, we’re not talking PG Tips. Rather, think Earl Grey and other more refined blends of black and green tea, with some producers using cold-brewing techniques, rather than the more traditional hard-and-fast hot-brewing method, to extract flavours more gently over time.

So is it really time for an alcoholic cuppa or are you better sticking with one lump or two? We put a selection of the latest tea-flavoured tipples to the test . . .

WIN-WIN WITH GIN

Noveltea Earl Grey Tea with Gin, £24.95 for 70cl, novelteadrinks.com

WHAT IS IT? A blend of Earl Grey tea and London Dry Gin.

Founders Lukas and Vincent met while studying at Newcastle University back in 2016, and together they came up with the idea of making a pre-bottled alcoholic tea.

Six months and 400 recipes later, they hit upon their final blend and launched it in the UK the following year.

They now have three teas in the main range, but this is their original blend.

TASTES LIKE: This, for me, is the brand’s best alcoholic tea. It’s gently smoky with the reassuring juniper hit of gin coming through on the palate. Serve it warm by heating it gently in a pan, or simply pour straight from the bottle over ice. Lovely. 8/10

SPICY COLD-BREW

Fortnum’s X Conker Distillery Cold Brew Tea Liqueur, £40 for 70cl, fortnum andmason.com

Helen said Fortnum¿s X Conker Distillery Cold Brew Tea Liqueur (pictured) tastes smooth, sweet and spicy

Helen said Fortnum’s X Conker Distillery Cold Brew Tea Liqueur (pictured) tastes smooth, sweet and spicy

WHAT IS IT? A tea liqueur made exclusively for Fortnum & Mason using the store’s signature Countess Grey black tea and New Forest Spring Water.

The tea is cold-brewed for 24 hours, drawing out flavour without bitterness, so you can still taste some of the bergamot and orange flavours along with the spirit.

TASTES LIKE: Smooth, sweet and spicy. Serve this neat over ice or top up with soda for a long drink. My choice, though, is to add a splash of this to a glass of fizz to make a simple champagne cocktail. At 20 per cent alcohol, it won’t floor you. 9/10

SAY CHEERS TO CHAI

Tipsy Tea Spiced Chai, £15 for 35cl, tipsytea.co.uk

Helen said Tipsy Tea Spiced Chai (pictured) is a little on the sweet side, but becomes moreish when combined with hot water

Helen said Tipsy Tea Spiced Chai (pictured) is a little on the sweet side, but becomes moreish when combined with hot water

WHAT IS IT? Inspired by Belle Livingstone, proprietor of one of the most infamous speakeasies of the Prohibition era, Tipsy Tea offers far more fun than your average cuppa.

This spiced chai liqueur is infused with tea and natural flavourings, including cinnamon, clove and cardamon.

TASTES LIKE: It’s a little on the sweet side for me, but add 50 ml to a mug of hot water and suddenly the flavours mellow into something comforting — and rather moreish.

There’s a pink peppercorn and root ginger flavour in the range, too, but this one is my tipsy pick.6/10

A BUILDER’S SNIFTER

Kakuzo Tea Infused Vodka, £27.49 for 70cl, thebottleclub.com

Helen said Kakuzo Tea Infused Vodka (pictured) tastes rich and smoky

Helen said Kakuzo Tea Infused Vodka (pictured) tastes rich and smoky

WHAT IS IT? A bit of a strange beast, but if you like full-on flavour, it’s delicious. This tipple is made from a blend of organic Earl Grey from Japan, China and India, which has been infused with rye vodka.

TASTES LIKE: Rich and smoky. On its own, it’s overpowering, but mix it with ginger beer or make a martini by adding 30 ml dry vermouth to 50 ml of this and you’ve got a funky party in a glass.

There’s so much going on, with layers of earthy flavours, and it has a real kick to it.

If you like your brews really strong, this is probably the alcoholic tea for you.7/10

RUM AND ROSIE LEE

Noveltea Green Tea with Rum, £24.95 for 70cl, noveltea drinks.com

Helen said Noveltea Green Tea with Rum (pictured) is palatable when poured over ice with a splash of soda

Helen said Noveltea Green Tea with Rum (pictured) is palatable when poured over ice with a splash of soda

WHAT IS IT? Another flavour variant from the team behind Noveltea. Given my love of rum, I really wanted to like this, but I didn’t.

One of my favourite cocktails is a mojito, so I know the combination of rum and mint is a tried and tested one. Unfortunately, though, the Moroccan mint green tea flavour is just too much for me, and it covers the taste of the white rum.

TASTES LIKE: There’s something of an aftertaste that’s more like toothpaste than alcoholic tea — it’s way too minty.

And I’m not surprised: at just 11 per cent alcohol, it’s too light on the booze to properly balance the flavours.

Try it poured over ice and top up with a splash of soda for a more palatable take. 4/10

TWIST ON THE TIPPLE

Three Sheets Old Fashioned, £29 for 500ml, shopcuvee.com

Helen said Three Sheets Old Fashioned (pictured) has fresh, spicy, sweet and smoky flavours all at once

Helen said Three Sheets Old Fashioned (pictured) has fresh, spicy, sweet and smoky flavours all at once

WHAT IS IT? From Three Sheets, one of the coolest bars in London, this pre-bottled cocktail is made with a blend of bourbon, a touch of sugar, a dash of Angostura bitters and — the kicker —rooibos tea tincture to add depth of flavour.

And this is exactly what they do so brilliantly at Three Sheets: taking classic cocktails and putting their own twist on them to make them even more delicious.

TASTES LIKE: You don’t even have to get the shaker out of the cupboard for this one — just pour over ice and sip away.

The flavours are fresh, spicy, sweet and smoky all at once, and you also get a nutty kick from the rooibos tea.

One is definitely not enough. Not for me, anyway. Luckily, each bottle contains six servings.

Source: A new drink trend sees spirits infused with your favourite cuppa | Daily Mail Online