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How did the original Long Island Iced Tea come about?

The sweltering summer sun has got many of us reaching for the freezer. Whether it’s Ice-cream or a chilled beverage, there are many ways to beat the heat. As the evening dawns, some may even prefer something a little stronger. The long Island Iced tea cocktail has for long been heralded as a signature cocktail of luxurious bars, the world over. The list of ingredients make it a dream beverage for any drink connoisseur. You might be curious to know how the long Island Iced tea came into existence. Actually there are quite a few stories that give it legendary status.


Bartender, Robert “Rosebud” Butt is said to have invented the Long Island Iced Tea, while competing in a cocktail contest in 1972. This occurred while he worked at the Oak Beach Inn in Long Island, New York. So how is it made? A cocktail shaker is first filled with ice, before blending in the ingredients. This includes Vodka, Rum, Tequila, Gin, Triple sec and Sour mix. After the cocktail is covered and shaken, a dash of cola is added. While Butt’s name is prevalent with the origins of Long Island Iced tea, a recipe with the same name is said to have been featured in Betty Crocker’s new picture Cook book in 1961. There are even reports that the Long Island Iced tea was created as early as the 1920’s, by Old Man Bishop, in Long Island, Tennessee. His recipe which included Maple syrup and Whiskey was passed on to his son Ransom, who set his heart on perfecting the drink.


Classic drinks have a habit of conjuring up interesting tales about the origins. Whichever you choose to believe, there is no question of its popularity. The drink is actually called Iced tea because the look of it resembles the non-alcoholic tea drink. That is the version we love and that is why we have created our very own Long Island green tea, which is inspired by the cocktail. It has a minty aroma with a refreshing taste. To view our Long Island Green tea, click here.

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