Lacey’s “Hard” Sweet Tea

Did you know they don’t sell hard alcohol on Sundays in Texas?

Lacey's Hard Sweet Tea recipe and images by Lacey Baier, a sweet pea chef

Me neither.

Did you know they don’t sell hard alcohol — at all — in supermarkets in Texas?

Me neither.

Lacey's Hard Sweet Tea recipe and images by Lacey Baier, a sweet pea chef

That last fact would have been *super* helpful last week and would have kept me from:

(1) walking around the Beer and Wine section of the grocery store for a good 15 minutes with a look of bewilderment AND

(2) looking like a completely clueless and alcoholic tourist when I went up to a store employee and innocently asked where all the hard liquor was.

Lacey's Hard Sweet Tea recipe and images by Lacey Baier, a sweet pea chef

Fortunately, the nice lady at the store sweetly asked, “You’re not from Texas, are you?”

Nope. Now I know.

After walking to the nearest liquor store slightly shamed, I had some Sweet Tea Vodka in my hot little hands. That’s right, baby: Sweet Tea Vodka!

Lacey's Hard Sweet Tea recipe and images by Lacey Baier, a sweet pea chef

If you read my post on Sweet Tea with Mint, you know how I love sweet tea. I just can’t get enough of the stuff.

Well, a couple months ago, Dustin and I heard about a local Austin company called Deep Eddy Vodka that produces Sweet Tea Vodka. I knew I had to try it.

Lacey's Hard Sweet Tea recipe and images by Lacey Baier, a sweet pea chef

So, I thought: What better way to enjoy sweet tea flavored vodka than in a Hard Sweet Tea, right?  Right!

After brewing some black tea and making a simple syrup, I decided to try the Deep Eddy Vodka over ice to see what it was all about. Let me share a little lesson I then learned…

Lacey's Hard Sweet Tea recipe and images by Lacey Baier, a sweet pea chef

Sweet tea flavored vodka is still … vodka! Needless to say, I took too large a swig (you know me and my sweet tea) and found myself at the sink. Oops.  (And, yes, I am well aware I am a complete softie.)

Lacey's Hard Sweet Tea recipe and images by Lacey Baier, a sweet pea chef

This Hard Sweet Tea is the perfect combination of ice cold sweet tea, vodka, fresh lemon and mint. It’s incredibly refreshing and delicious.

I like to make enough simple syrup and iced tea ahead of time so I can easily make this tasty cocktail on a whim.

Lacey's Hard Sweet Tea recipe and images by Lacey Baier, a sweet pea chef

So, kick up your feet, take a deep breath and enjoy a Lacey’s “Hard” Sweet Tea as this hot summer comes to a close.

Lacey’s “Hard” Sweet Tea

Makes 1 cocktail

2 oz. Sweet Tea Vodka (produced by Firefly, Seagram, Jeremiah Weed, Burnett’s, Sweet Carolina, Depp Eddy, etc.)
1 oz. simple syrup
1 oz. freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus extra for splash
4 oz. freshly brewed black tea, cold
2-3 fresh mint leaves, whole, plus more for garnish
ice (for shaking and for serving)
sliced lemon, for garnish

Directions

To make a simple syrup, combine 1 cup granulated sugar with 1 cup water (or just equal parts, if making more or less) in a medium sauce pan. Heat over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until it begins to boil and sugar is completely dissolved. Allow to cool.

In a Cocktail Shaker, add ice, followed by Sweet Tea Vodka, simple syrup, lemon juice and black tea. Top with fresh mint leaves. Close shaker and shake vigorously for about 1 minute, or until condensation starts to appear on the shaker.

Using a strainer, pour mixture over ice in a tall glass. Squeeze a little lemon over cocktail for a splash of lemon. Garnish with a fresh mint leaf or slice of lemon, if desired.

Comments

  1. says

    Ha, when we moved to Texas, we found this out the hard way, too. The town we lived in didn’t even allow the sale of beer and wine in the local grocery stores so we had to go just across the town line to the Shell gas station which had a fully stocked beer and wine section with a wine sommelier! Really! It was surreal. The closest liquor store was so far away that I don’t think we bought anything other than beer and wine for the 26 months we lived in Texas.

  2. says

    Hi Lacey!
    I’m new to your site (found you on Tasty Kitchen). May I say, I am thoroughly enjoying it. I may spend the entire evening here. My husband will never know I’m not paying attention to him, now that football season is here. Your photos are gorgeous and I plan on making your pad thai recipe this week. It looks fantastic!
    This tea looks amazing. Coming from a woman who has numerous vodkas in her freezer at all times. Please don’t judge :) I have 2 young children. I will be on the lookout for some of this. BTW, New Hampshire doesn’t sell hard alcohol in our grocery stores either. Thanks for a great site. I’ll be making you a regular.

  3. says

    Lacey,
    Your hard ice tea sounds like the perfect antidote for our hot Texas weather. In the same way you didn’t know they DON’T carry hard liquor in grocery stores in Texas… I’m always blown away when I travel outside of Texas and I DO see it in the grocery store somewhere else! That amazes me. I’m all like, “Seriously? I can buy TEQUILA in a grocery store? Wow… I could live here!”

  4. Karen D. says

    You can’t buy hard liquor in the grocery store in Florida either.

    This cocktail looks very tasty – especially since the weather here is still in the 90s.

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