Tokyo Tea

Tokyo Tea is a melon-flavored spin on the Long Island Iced Tea using Midori liqueur! It’s even better than the classic.

Tokyo tea

Here’s a neon green drink that’s eye-catching…and absolutely delicious: Tokyo Tea! This spin on the Long Island Iced Tea stars Midori, a honeydew melon-flavored Japanese liqueur. Reserve your judgement until you taste this one. This is by no means a low-brow drink! It’s refreshing, zingy, and full of intriguing flavor with the contrasts of lemon, orange liqueur, and bright melon. A cool glass is ideal for sipping on a summer evening or as the signature drink for a party. Ready to get started?

What’s in Tokyo Tea, aka Tokyo Iced Tea?

Tokyo Tea, aka Tokyo Iced Tea, is a spin on the ultra popular Long Island Iced Tea. This ubiquitous cocktail was invented in the 1970’s and has now been canonized by the International Bartenders Association (IBA) as a classic cocktails. We rarely order Long Island Iced Tea’s, mainly because of its image: super potent and pretty low brow. But make the LIIT correctly, and it’s a symphony of flavor! Use quality liquor, fresh citrus and higher-end Cointreau as the orange liqueur, and it’s bright, nuanced and sweet tart.

Make it into a Tokyo Tea by adding Midori liqueur, and it actually tastes even better. It’s got a light honeydew melon nuance, and it changes the look to a brilliant green. You do need six — count ’em — six different liquors, so it’s for those of you with a well-stocked liquor cabinet. Here’s what you need to make Tokyo Iced Tea:

  • Vodka
  • Tequila
  • White rum
  • Gin
  • Cointreau
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • Simple syrup
  • Midori
  • Soda water
Midori

More about Midori

Is it worth buying Midori for Tokyo Tea? In a word: yes! If you’re a cocktail enthusiast, it’s a fun liquor to tinker with. Here’s what to know about Midori:

  • Midori is a bright green, honeydew melon flavored Japanese liqueur. It was first released in 1964 as Hermes Melon Liqueur. It was released in the US in 1978 under the name “Midori,” the Japanese word for green.
  • What does Midori taste like? It’s very sweet, with a candy-like honeydew melon flavor.
  • What cocktails can you make with Midori? The most famous cocktails with Midori are the Midori Sour, Japanese Slipper, and Tokyo Tea.
  • How much does Midori cost? A small bottle (375 ml) costs around $15, and a large bottle (750 ml) is about $25-30.
  • Is it worth buying? Yes, for the adventurous home mixologist! It’s a specialty liqueur, but a fun splurge.

A few substitute ideas

The Tokyo Tea calls for a laundry list of liquor that can seem daunting! Can you make this drink without all of the components? Here are a few ideas for some substitutions:

  • Midori: No substitute! You’ll absolutely need Midori for Tokyo Tea. If you don’t have it, go to Long Island Iced Tea instead.
  • Vodka: You can leave it out and double one of the other liquors.
  • Tequila: You can leave it out and double one of the other liquors.
  • White rum: Use another type of rum (aged or dark) if you don’t have white on hand. Aged adds a sophistication to the flavor. Or you can leave it out and double one of the other liquors.
  • Gin: You can leave it out and double one of the other liquors.
  • Cointreau: Want a Cointreau substitute? Use Triple Sec, Grand Marnier or Orange Curacao.
Tokyo iced tea

How to make Tokyo Tea

You can build your Tokyo Tea drink right in the glass: so you don’t have to dirty a cocktail shaker or spend time shaking! The only time involved here is measuring out each liquor. Here’s all you need to do to make this easy drink:

  • Stir: Pour the components into a highball glass. Add ice and stir.
  • Add soda water: Then top it off with soda water! No shaking required. Garnish with a cocktail cherry if you’d like.

More Midori cocktails

Want to use up your bottle of Midori? There are a few other Midori cocktails starring this green liqueur:

  • Midori Sour Midori, lemon and lime make a sweet tart, brilliant green drink.
  • Japanese Slipper Pair Midori with Cointreau and lemon for a classy cocktail
Tokyo tea

When to serve Tokyo Iced Tea

Tokyo Iced Tea is great for sipping in summer or warm weather, but you can drink it all year round. Try it as a:

  • Summer cocktail
  • Happy hour drink
  • Dinner party drink
  • Late night drinks drink
  • Guys or girls night drink
  • Cocktail hour drink
Print
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Tokyo tea

Perfect Tokyo Tea


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (7 votes, average: 4.86 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink 1x
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Tokyo Tea is a melon-flavored spin on the Long Island Iced Tea using Midori liqueur! It’s even better than the classic. 


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1/2 ounce* vodka
  • 1/2 ounce tequila
  • 1/2 ounce white rum
  • 1/2 ounce gin
  • 1/2 ounce Cointreau (or Triple Sec or other orange liqueur
  • 1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 ounce simple syrup
  • 1 ounce Midori
  • 1 splash soda water
  • For the garnish: Cocktail cherry (optional)

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients (except soda water) in a highball glass. Fill it with ice and stir.
  2. Top with splash of soda water. Add the garnish if desired, and serve. 

Notes

*1/2 ounce = 1 tablespoon

  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: Cocktails

Keywords: Tokyo tea, Tokyo iced tea

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

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