Sipping warm matcha — made with finely crushed green tea leaves — can be comforting on a cold day. But this superfood is now finding its way into smoothie and desserts, and it’s become an innovative mixology ingredient. Here are nine matcha cocktails at restaurants ranging from scene-y E&O Kitchen and Bar for a lively friends night out to Café ArtScience, which is ideal for a group dinner with adventurous eaters (and their iPhones).
Jaded Buddha at E&O Kitchen and Bar, San Francisco, California
Served in a tulip snifter, this refreshing libation features Hangar 1 Buddha’s Hand Citron vodka, Mata Hari absinthe, matcha green tea powder, Thai basil, fresh lime juice, and simple syrup. Make a reservation at E&O Kitchen and Bar.
El Sueño Verde at MXDC, Washington, D.C.
Available at celebrity chef Todd English’s modern Mexican cocina, this twist on the classic margarita (Spanish for “the Green Dream”) boasts Tequila Blanco, housemade lemongrass matcha syrup, and fresh lime juice. Make a reservation at MXDC.
Titi Monkey at Café ArtScience, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Bar director and partner Tenzin Samdo names his cocktails for endangered species from around the world. The Titi Monkey pays homage to a species of monkey found in Brazil, and is made with egg white, matcha, pisco, sandalwood, orange peel, lemon, and sugarcane,. Make a reservation at Café ArtScience.
The Matched Set at 4 Saints, Palm Springs, California
Riffing on a Tom Collins, the Matched Set uses Ketel 1 vodka that has been fat-washed with coconut oil. House-made match syrup, fresh lemon juice, seltzer, and a lemon wheel add the finishing touches. Make a reservation at 4 Saints.
Table 2 at Estiatorio Milos-The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, Las Vegas, Nevada
Mitilini Lemon Mastic Tears, lemon matcha sour, rosemary, Greek sea salt, and Fever Tree club soda give Table 2 a distinctive mix of citrus and herbal flavors. Make a reservation at Estiatorio Milos-The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.
Going Green at Fine China at the Statler, Dallas, Texas
Going Green features an elegant combination of Monkey Shoulder scotch, Velvet Falernum, pineapple, lemon, matcha tea, and egg white. Make a reservation at Fine China at the Statler.
Fairly Suspect at Hinoki & the Bird, Los Angeles, California
Vodka, Salers aperitif, ginger beer, and matcha dust create a cocktail with the breezy color scheme of a Lilly Pulitzer dress. Make a reservation at Hinoki & the Bird.
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Susan Johnston Taylor is an Austin-based freelance writer who’s covered food and business for publications including The Boston Globe, Civil Eats, Entrepreneur, Fast Company, Fresh Cup, and Pizza Today. Follow her @UrbanMuseWriter.
Photo credits: Pat Ford (Cafe ArtScience).