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How Many Alcohols are in a Long Island Iced Tea?

Long Island Iced Tea

The famous Long Island Iced Tea has a unique flavor and when properly mixed, the potential to give you a solid buzz. This cocktail can be deceptive because of its smooth and delicious flow across the palate and down the hatch. The recipe calls for several different alcohol types. How many alcohols are in Long Island Iced Tea? Here is everything there is to know about this tempting alcoholic beverage, plus a few little-known facts about its origins.

How many alcohols are in a Long Island Iced Tea?

There are four alcohols and one liqueur in a traditional Long Island Iced Tea. The standard recipe calls for triple sec (liqueur), gin, vodka, rum, and tequila. The standard recipe calls for 3/4 ounces of each alcohol. For the sake of simplicity, we're going to consider the liqueur in the same class. These are mixed with 3/4 ounces of simple syrup with 3/4 ounces of freshly squeezed lemon juice and a wedge of lemon as a tangy and attractive garnish. When all of these ingredients are added to a tall glass, top it off with your favorite cola beverage. It adds a snappy fizz. The strength of the Long Island Tea is going to be intense because of the large quantities of alcohol, so proceed with caution. You can temper the alcohol content by the size of the glass and the amount of cola you add. If you sip it too slowly, however, you run the risk of losing the carbonation.

The origins of Long Island Iced Tea

The origins of the Long Island Iced Tea cocktail are not agreed upon. Some believe that it was born in the city of its namesake, in Long Island, New York. This is as close to a rendering of the history that we get from They're not alone in surmising that the drink is a NY creation, but Leaf offers a different explanation of the roots of this popular drink. They suggest that the cocktail's origins come from a place far removed from New York, stated in Kingsport, Tennessee. There is a community in Kingsport called Long Island. Leaf experts claim this to be the historical birthplace of the Long Island Iced Tea. What most can agree on is that it was created in the time of Prohibition. The ban on alcohol led the mixologists to mix a strong drink in protest, although they kept the high alcohol content concealed under the guise of a soft drink. They credit Robert Butt, the Oak Beach Inn bartender in Long Island, Tennessee with the creation of the drink. He claimed to formulate the mixture in the early 1970s, but so far, there is disagreement over the origins. Not everyone believes he is the author of the boozy concoction.

A powerful concoction has gone so far as to issue a warning about the popular cocktail. They're not alone in posting a disclaimer about the advantages and potential drawbacks of drinking this tasty but powerful cocktail. Concerned cocktail connoisseurs caution that the average shot contains 1.5 ounces of booze. When you add up the alcohol that goes into a single Long Island Iced Tea, you're dealing with twice that amount with 3.75 ounces. It's a lot for light drinkers who have not developed a tolerance. Having a Long Island Iced Tea at a business luncheon may not be such a great idea if you're planning to go back to the office. It's a strong drink that can alter your perceptions in ways that don't mix well with driving a vehicle or engaging in conversations with your employer. It's only fair to share the calorie count in a Long Island Iced Tea while we're on warnings. If you use standard cola with sugary sweeteners, you're consuming nearly 800 calories in one glass. The calories metabolize in your system and turn into fat cells if you don't burn them before they turn. The Tea is best consumed in the privacy of your own home or with a designated driver in tow.

Variations of the Long Island Iced Tea

The Long Island Iced Tea became a popular drink during the 1970s, and it hasn't lost any traction since that time. It's still one of the favorites in the nation. This is an iconic cocktail that has become a national classic. You can tweak the recipe and replace the cola with a different carbonated beverage to change it up. Some enjoy trying new things and creating their signature versions of the drink. A purist is likely to reject the notion of changing the recipe in favor of the old standard that we all love and sometimes come to regret, the morning after. Whatever your preference, the Long Island Iced Tea is a cocktail that is here to stay, so we'd better learn how to consume it responsibly to avoid buyer's remorse, because they're simply amazing.

Final thoughts

The Long Island Iced Tea isn't a cocktail we'd recommend for anyone who has little experience drinking alcohol. It's an adult beverage that is more suitable for a seasoned drinker who can handle a mishmash of five alcohols in one tall drink. The best thing about a Long Island Iced Tea is its unique taste. It offers complexity with a light fruity flavor. The variety of different alcohols isn't the hot mess that many claims. if you use some of the better labels in each category, the result is a cocktail with complex notes that can be fun to analyze and figure out. If you plan to do so, you'll be the most successful before you finish half the glass. All jesting aside, it's a powerfully boozy drink, but we Americans truly love our Long Island Iced Teas. The drink has become a part of our heritage, even if we can't all agree on its origins.

Lily Wordsmith

Written by Lily Wordsmith

Lily Wordsmith is a freelance writer who has had a love affair with the written word for decades. You can find her writing blog posts and articles while sitting under a tree at the local park watching her kids play, or typing away on her tablet in line at the DMV. In addition to her freelance career, she is pursuing ebook writing with an ever-growing repertoire of witty ebooks to her name. Her diversity is boundless, and she has written about everything from astrobotany to zookeepers. Her real passions are her family, baking desserts and all things luxe.

Read more posts by Lily Wordsmith

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