The Earl Grey MarTEAni is destined to be a modern classic.  A simple but very creative twist on an old classic, this is one of my favorite drinks.  My wife and I drink a lot of tea, and my tea of choice is earl grey, made strong and served with milk and sugar.  I am a fan of pairing earl grey with almost anything, so it is no surprise that I like this cocktail as much as I do.

The Earl Grey MarTEAni
(created by Audrey Saunders of New York’s Pegu Club)
1 1/2 oz Earl Grey infused Gin
3/4 oz Lemon Juice
1 oz Simple Syrup
1 Egg White
garnish with lemon twist

A couple of notes on this drink.
First, don’t be freaked out by the egg white.  I know many people who won’t even taste this drink because they have an unfounded fear of raw eggs.  However, the chance of a raw egg containing salmonella is about one in twenty thousand.  Just wash your eggs.  When mixed up with citrus and alcohol, the chance of any possible bacteria living is pretty small, especially in a large enough amount to make anyone sick.  When mixing up many classic cocktails, eggs are an important part of the drink, adding both texture and volume.  It’s just not the same without the egg.

Secondly, I often use this drink to explain the “taste” of astringency to people.   Everyone is familiar with the four basic tastes: sweet, sour, salty, and bitter.  However, not everyone is familiar with the other two, referred to as astringency and umami.  I describe astringency as the “drying out” taste that is provided by the essence of bergamot.