On our last day trip to Portland, ME, John and I visited the awesome Maine Mead Works and left with a few bottles of lavender honey mead. One of the brewers suggested using it in a spiked lemonade or iced tea and I’ve been waiting for the right time to make it. John’s birthday party this past weekend was the perfect time! And also who doesn’t love an Arnold Palmer, am I right?
Kim’s Lavender Mead Arnold Palmer
3/4 cup simple syrup (equal parts sugar and water, see below)
1 cup (6 lemons) fresh squeezed lemon juice
1.5 quarts fresh brewed tea (I used a bergamot earl grey)
1 bottle of your favorite wine (I used Maine Mead Works’ Lavender Mead)
Sliced citrus for garnish (I used one orange and one lime, but feel free to use whatever you have)
I made this recipe over two days because I had the time. You could totally make it in a few hours but I really think the flavors come together better with an overnight preparation. I also think it’s much better to start with ingredients that are all at the same temperature (i.e. chilled). With that I’m mind I’m going to write this recipe assuming you’ll also do the two day prep, ok? Let’s begin!
First things first – chill that wine! And chill your lemons. Get them in the fridge and that’s that.
Second, make your simple syrup. This is super easy. Boil equal parts sugar and water together (I used 1 cup of water and 1 cup of sugar) until the sugar is completely dissolved. That’s it!
I then put my simple syrup in a tupperware container and stored in the fridge overnight. I felt like this allowed the syrup the time to set up properly – thick and smooth is what you’re looking for.
Next, brew your tea. I used loose leaf tea for this recipe. You can literally use any tea you like or have on hand though. I chose bergamot earl grey because it has a deep, rich flavor and I really wanted to be able to taste the tea aspect of this drink through the rest of the flavors. Steep your tea to your preferred darkness, I let mine steep for about 15-20 minutes to get that great color and full flavor.
I then stored my tea in the fridge overnight as well.
Ok, Day 2.
Halve, seed, and juice six lemons. I can’t believe this only yielded a cup of juice! The flavor is well worth it though. Don’t use bottled, canned, or any other kind of lemon juice here. If you can’t squeeze it yourself, skip the lemons.
OK, you’re almost ready to mix up your Arnold Palmer. The last thing to do it to find a fabulous pitcher to serve it from. Our friends Melissa and John got us this beautiful Simon Pearce pitcher as a wedding gift and I’ve been dying to use it.
Final steps: add your lemon juice, then your iced tea, and then your simple syrup to your pitcher. Make sure to taste it at this point and adjust to your liking.
Once the Arnold Palmer is mixed to your preferred sweetness and tartness, mix in your wine or mead.
Garnish with a few slices of citrus – orange and lime for me, please!
And there you go! This spiked Arnold Palmer is the perfect summer party drink. It’s cold, refreshing, sweet, a little tart, and just the right amount of boozey. Bottoms up!