Chapel Hill, N.C. — It might be winter, but it feels like summer! To celebrate, TOPO Distillery in Chapel Hill shares one of their favorite cocktails.
Whether you're poolside, lakeside or seaside, as you prepare to embrace North Carolina’s infamous humidity, you’ll find yourself slowing down and enjoying the easy pace of the season.
Your libation of choice? A refreshing Southern Whiskey Punch. Fresh orange juice, lemon extract and iced tea invigorated by a sage infused simple syrup bring together a flavor combo that, when poured over ice, will cool you down on even the hottest of days.
Traditionally, punches are accompanied by a rum, but this recipe using TOPO Organic Eight Oak Whiskey, the first aged whiskey by TOPO Organic Spirits, is a new take on a seasonal favorite.
Southern Whiskey Punch
- 2 oz. of your favorite unsweetened tea
- 2 oz. TOPO organic Eight Oak Whiskey
- 1⁄2 oz. sage simple syrup (see recipe below)
- 1⁄2 oz. lemon extract
- 1⁄2 oz. orange juice
- 2 dashes crude sycophant bitters
Mix all ingredients in a shaker and stir. Pour over ice in a rocks glass.
TOPO Organic Vodka Eight Oak Whiskey is available in ABC stores throughout NC.
To make the sage simple syrup:
Bring 1 cup of water to a boil. Add 1 1⁄2 cups of sugar and simmer until clear. Add 20 fresh sage leaves and simmer for 10 minutes. Strain and cool.
Simple syrups will keep in the refrigerator for several weeks.
A punch is the perfect pick for a gathering because it is easy to make, and it is always a crowd pleaser. Expand this recipe and have a pitcher ready for when friends and family want to join you on the dock or deck.
This story originally appeared in Chapel Hill Magazine. See more from TOPO at TASTE 2017, a four-day celebration of food and drink in April sponsored by Chapel Hill Magazine and Durham Magazine. The event, which is brought to you by Johnson Lexus, will include dinners, classes and tasting events featuring local and regional chefs.
WRAL Out and About is a sponsor of TASTE 2017.