Courtesy Gabriella Mlynarczyk, blogger and beverage director, Birch, Los Angeles
One of the country’s premier mixologists, Mlynarczyk (author of award-winning blog The Loving Cup) offers up this versatile punch. “This drink was inspired by the Smoking Bishop, a wine-based punch mentioned in A Christmas Carol,” she says. She adds chai tea for extra layers of flavor, and says the drink works equally well hot or iced.
- The Bishop’s Wife:
- 3 lemons, peeled and juiced
- ½ cup cane sugar
- 1 (750ml) bottle ruby Port
- 1 cup Benedictine
- ½ cup allspice dram
- ½ cup cChai tea-infused simple syrup (recipe below)
- ½ ounce orange bitters
- Slices of blood oranges, for garnish
- Pink peppercorns, for garnish
- Chai Tea-Infused Simple Syrup:
- 3 chai teabags
- 3 cups cane sugar
Several hours before preparing the punch, freeze water and fruit slices, if desired, in a Bundt mold.
Muddle lemon rind with cane sugar. Let sit for up to 4 hours. Add lemon juice and stir. Pour lemon syrup into a pitcher, and add remaining ingredients. Stir well, and chill for 1 hour. When ready to serve, pour punch into a bowl over the ice block. Garnish with blood orange wheels and pink peppercorns. Serves 6–8.
To serve hot: Add all ingredients except oranges to a nonreactive pan. Warm through, but don’t boil. Pour into punch bowl. Garnish with orange slices.
Chai Tea-Infused Simple Syrup
Bring 3 cups of water to a boil in a saucepan. Remove from heat. Add tea bags and steep for 5 minutes. Discard teabags, add sugar and return to a boil. Stir until sugar has dissolved. Let cool.