Finally, there's a nonalcoholic beverage that actually appeals to wine lovers. If you find yourself tee totaling (either for a night or for good), swap your sparkling cider for the Golden Star Tea Company's new White Jasmine Sparkling Tea, which has the effervescence and subtlety of a fine Champagne--as well as the food-friendliness--without the alcoholic punch.
Surprisingly, this complex beverage is a concoction of just three ingredients: jasmine silver needle tea, raw cane juice and water. The tea itself, a very rare version of the white tea leaf, is certified organic and comes from the Fujian province of China. White Jasmine Sparkling Tea is a pleasantly fruity quaff with a hint of tea and all the nuance of fermented grapes.
But for those who are still imbibing, we couldn't resist a cocktail experiment, and Golden Star proves to be a surprisingly versatile mixer. So when you want a little more than just tea, try this twist on the Dark and Stormy:
Light and Misty
Makes 1 drink
3 thin slices of peeled fresh ginger
1½ ounces spiced rum
½ ounce fresh lemon juice
Golden Star Sparkling White Jasmine Tea
In a cocktail shaker, muddle the ginger slices. Fill the shaker with ice and add the rum and lemon juice. Shake well and pour into an ice-filled Collins glass. Top with sparkling tea and serve.
Golden Star Sparkling White Jasmine Tea ($13 for 730 ml) is available at select Whole Foods markets and restaurants, or online at goldenstartea.com