It is the last official night of summer. Tonight we have our annual back-to-school dinner and then it is back to homework, projects, and soccer practice ruling our calendar. We are so ready, believe me, but it is still a little sad to say goodbye to summer. This summer was beyond fun, and just what we needed.
When we moved to Alexandria a few weeks ago, we had never visited the area, or even seen the house that we are renting. We came into this move blind. It is a bit overwhelming, but I have to be honest, my Xyboard has made this transition so much easier. When Verizon Wireless gave me my Xyboard to try out, I had no idea how helpful it would be when it comes to navigating my way around my new hometown. I never leave the house without it. Within the first 48 hours of living here, it helped me find two urgent cares (because pink eye doesn’t care that you do not have a doctor yet), Whole Foods, my kid’s school, and where to buy (and how to get there) just about everything. I keep my grocery list on it, and jot down things that I see on my travels to return to when we have some extra time. Not to mention, that it was the only wifi connection we had for over a week. It powered every device we own. And the connection was so good, I was able to deliver RAW files to a client with zero lag. It is amazing.
I was driving home from urgent care on a rainy Sunday, and all of the sudden, I spotted a Caribou Coffee. Right before we left Kansas, I discovered the beauty of Caribou Coffee. I fell in love with their White Tea Mint Lime Cooler and as I crossed about 10 lanes of traffic, I crossed my fingers that they still had them. They are a summer only drink, and as you probably are aware, Pumpkin Spice Lattes have made their yearly appearance already. I was so happy, I snapped a picture with my Xyboard and like everything I do, shared it on Instagram.
While I was sitting in the car, enjoying my drink, I jotted down (have I mentioned that the stylus is awesome?) how I think that it was made so that I could re-create it at home. To say goodbye to summer, I made my own version, and dare I say, I like this one even more? I made a mint flavored simple syrup, and a tea concentrate. The thing that I love the most about Caribou’s drink is that it is sparkly. I wanted to keep the tea flavor without watering it down. By adding a small amount of water to the tea bags, and adding sparkling water later, the flavor never got watered down. This drink is so refreshing, I will savor summer all year long.
2/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup water
1 cup mint leaves
6 Tazo Cucumber White tea bags (or any white tea)
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
Combine water and sugar in a saucepan.
Cook over medium high heat until the sugar comes to a boil and dissolves. Add mint leaves. Mix the leaves around. You want the leaves to get crushed and ugly so that all of the mint flavor goes into the simple syrup. Take off the heat and let cool.
Meanwhile, boil a pot of water. About 2-3 cups.
Let the tea steep in the hot water.
White tea does not get very dark because it is well, white. This is after 3 minutes.
Let the tea cool completely. Strain the mint leaves out of the syrup.
Get your lime juice ready and reserve a few extra slices for garnish.
Combine the simple syrup, tea mixture, lime slices, and some mint in a pitcher.
Add sparkling water. This is more to taste. The more you add, the less sweet the mixture will be. I think that I added about 2 cups.
Add some more mint, just because it looks pretty, and enjoy!
Disclosure: I am participating in the Verizon Wireless Midwest Savvy Gourmets program and have been provided with a wireless device and six months of service in exchange for my honest opinions about the product. bit.ly/VZWSG