Celery Sour Mocktail
Serve this bright, refreshing nonalcoholic mixed drink up in a chilled cocktail glass, or stretch it by pouring it over ice in a lowball glass and topping with a splash of soda water or tonic. However you choose to serve it, reserve the extra celery simple syrup and use it as a replacement for regular simple syrup in all manner of drinks, nonalcoholic and spirited, alike. Or, if you don’t have time to make the celery simple syrup for this drink, you can substitute in standard 1:1 simple syrup, though the resulting sour will lose some of its vegetal nuance.
- Serves: 1 person
- 1cup granulated sugar
- 4whole allspice berries
- 10black peppercorns
- Pinch of flaky sea salt (optional)
- 1cup celery leaves (or ½ cup celery leaves and ½ cup parsley leaves)
- 2chamomile tea bags (or 2 tablespoons loose leaf tea)
- 2(3-inch) pieces lemon peel
- ½lime, cut into quarters
- ½celery stalk, cut into ½-inch pieces
- ¾ounce Celery Simple Syrup
- 3ounces Chilled Chamomile Tea
Step 1Prepare the celery simple syrup: In a small saucepan, combine sugar, allspice, peppercorns and salt (if using) with 1 cup water. Heat over low, stirring frequently, just until sugar dissolves, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the celery leaves (and parsley leaves, if using). Set aside to steep at room temperature for 1 to 2 hours. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve, pressing on the solids. (You should have about 1½ cups syrup.) Keep it in the refrigerator, tightly covered in an airtight container, for up to 3 weeks.
Step 2Prepare the chamomile tea base: In a tea kettle or small saucepan over high heat, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Remove from the heat, add the tea and lemon peels. Allow to steep for 10 minutes, then remove the tea bags and peels or, if using loose-leaf tea, strain through a fine-mesh sieve and set aside to cool completely. Keep it chilled in the refrigerator, tightly covered in an airtight container, for up to 5 days.
Step 3Prepare the cocktail: In a shaker, add lime, celery pieces and the simple syrup. Muddle to smash and release the lime’s juices. Add the chilled chamomile tea and ice. Cover and shake vigorously until well chilled, about 15 seconds. Strain into a chilled Nick and Nora or coupe glass.