Lent-Infused Bourbon | a Holy Tuesday spirit


  • 12 oz (half a bottle) High Proof Bourbon
  • 3 tsp Lapsang Souchong Tea
  • 1 tbsp White sugar
  • .25-.5 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 large Orange Wheel, halved

Add all ingredients to a 16oz airtight mason jar. Shake and let sit in a cool, dry place. Shake it once or twice every day. Start tasting after day 3. Once you like the taste, you can strain the solids if you want. After day 5 or so, the taste won’t change and it’s fine to keep everything in the jar if you want.

View other Holy Day cocktails.

* * * *

We continue our Holy week cocktails with something a little different for Holy Tuesday–a liquor infusion!

This recipe makes a high proof bourbon that is very smoky, with a touch of citrus and sweetness that really gives a lot of complexity, perfect for Lenten reflection whether you drink it straight or in a cocktail (it makes an amazing Old Fashioned).

On Holy Monday, Jesus went into the temple and overturned tables, clearing out money changers. This surely was disruptive and provocative, so what does he do on Tuesday? Return to the temple and spend the day debating the religious leaders on a huge range of topics.

Jesus exposes the priests and teachers as hypocrites before the common people, announces God’s rejection of them, and even prophesies the destruction of the very temple in which they are arguing. And at the end of it all, God in Jesus has been fully and finally rejected by the religious institution and its leaders. The stage is set, and they prepare to kill him.

In the synoptic gospels, this is the longest section of Jesus’s final week. It was surely a long, exhausting, draining day.

What’s often overlooked in Jesus’ frequent altercations with Pharisees is that they were the Jewish sect he was most aligned with theologically. He would have grown up going to their synagogues, learning from their teachers, and receiving forgiveness from their priests.

They weren’t just abstract enemies. They were his religious family. To experience their rejection was surely a gut punch demanding an equally strong drink to honor it.

And that’s what I’m offering today. Like the Pharisees themselves, this spirit is infused with inseparable beauty and darkness, sweetness and bite, delicacy and punch. It is complicated and strong, offering the comfort of the bourbon you love while surprising you with what it’s become.

(Am I stretching the metaphor too far? Probably. Am I kind of phoning this day in because I couldn’t think of a full cocktail for this day? Maybe….)

Ingredient Notes

Don’t use super fancy bourbon here. I just used 100 proof Evan Williams bourbon. A fine, sweet bourbon for cocktails and infusions like this. Just make sure it is high proof so it extracts all the flavors and stands up to them.

Lapsang souchong tea is a Chinese black tea that tastes just like campfire smoke. I love it as tea, but it also lends itself to recipes like this. I used Harney & Sons from Amazon.

Most of the ingredients and the method are straightforward. The only thing I’d emphasize is that you should use two halves of an orange wheel cut from the middle of the orange–not wedges or peels. You also don’t need to muddle the orange or anything. It’ll extract on its own just fine.

Recipe Card


One thought on “Lent-Infused Bourbon | a Holy Tuesday spirit

  1. Pingback: Razing Hell Espresso Martini | a Holy Saturday cocktail | the long way home

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