The concept for Cherry Sour was one of the first tisane blends we ever devised at Endeavour Tea. Officially, the goal was to come up with an all-natural tisane inspired by grenadine, a non-alcoholic bar syrup traditionally made from pomegranate juice, sugar and water. Off the record though, the recipe began as something of a wonderful experiment with dried cherries and hibiscus that was dreamt up in tea blending school and perfected in the test kitchen.
From almost indecipherable handwriting, we worked through the heat of summer in a deliriously hot apartment, sniffing and brewing and tasting each ingredient to come to grips with our prototype blend. Our first few attempts at preparing the blend were far too sour, causing some serious facial pucker with each sip. It was at that point we decided to add in a little rooibos to provide a base leaf for the blend, and accentuate the very slight sweetness of the hibiscus and sour cherries by introducing cinnamon, stevia and dried orange peel.
We always intended on the mouth-drying sensation (astringency) and high tartness within the blend, as it felt that it mimicked the after-taste of a whiskey sour. The 'dry' profile of the blend, we discovered, made for an extraordinary refreshing chilled beverage. When served warm, far more of the cocktail aspect presents itself.
The final step in the process was selecting a name; we simply reversed the words 'sour cherry', one of the principle ingredients in the blend. And just like that, a cocktail-inspired blend was born.