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Food Trends Part Three: Tea is Hot!

Tea is hot | food trends | ECEP | 24 carrots | catering | top caterers
Pinkies up! Celebrate with crustless sandwiches, warm scones, and freshly brewed tea for special social occasions. Photo: Jackie Culmer Creative for 24 Carrots Catering and Events

Enjoy Part Three of our three-part series featuring ECEP member 24 Carrots Catering & Events.

Read about Elevated Street Food here and After-Party Catered Snacks here.


Call it the Bridgerton effect on hospitality, but tea is hot this season at weddings and events. Considering the fragrant aroma, variety of tastes, and long tradition, it's the perfect elegant beverage for those who want a non-alcoholic option without losing out on a special treat, and it’s probably been in your catering toolbox for some time.

We're spilling the tea on how this year cutting-edge caterers like 24 Carrots Catering & Events in Costa mesa, California, are brewing some exciting tea-centric menus and events.

Tea Cocktails

Tea is the perfect guest, mixing well with spirits and festivities at events from start to finish.

Teas offer unique flavors and pleasing textures that perfectly complement cocktails.

For instance, brewed and chilled green tea with dry, sparkling white wine, fresh lemon juice, and a touch of honey or sugar syrup offers a subtle but pleasing harmony of sweet, sour, and bitter, sure to make a splash at the punch bowl. Want a little more kick? A touch of gin or vodka complements the taste beautifully.

tea is hot | food trends | cocktails | tea coctails | food trends | cocktail trends | top caterers | ecep
The Richland Tea Cocktail by 24 Carrots & Events | Photo: Jackie Culmer Creative

For the grand opening event for The Richland in Orange, California, 24 Carrots create a branded tea cocktail that would welcome guests to the new venue with a cup of tea, the type of hospitality we love to provide.

Only this tea had a kick. The team wanted to add a teabag to the cocktail—because what’s a cup of tea without a teabag—but had to figure out how to make that happen without impacting the flavors or presentation of the cocktail.

The recipe 

  • 4 oz milk tea

  • 4 oz Toki Japanese whisky

  • ¼ oz fresh lemon juice

  • ¼ oz fresh grapefruit juice

  • 1½ oz pandan syrup  

The process 

Combine all ingredients except milk tea. Slowly add in the milk tea. Curds will start to form after about 15-45 minutes. Strain curds through a chinois and then through coffee filters. Chill mixture. Serve in a clear teacup with dehydrated lemon teabag for garnish.  

tea is hot | tea trends | food trends | high tea | ecep | elite catering and event professionals | 24 carrots and events | top caterers
Tea Station by 24 Carrots & Events. Photos by Jackie Culmer Creative

Tea is hot: High Tea

Pinkies up! High Tea, also known as Afternoon Tea, is an old English tradition steeped in high society, evoking an atmosphere of poise and charm. Guests get lost in conversation as they nibble an array of crustless sandwiches, sweet pastries, dainty treats, and warm scones crisped on the outside but oh-so-fluffy on the inside.

The wafting aroma of delicately brewed tea leaves will bring the event straight into a Jane Austen novel. Imagine guests seated at a table in front of crystal clear teapots, each with a flowering tea that blooms as hot water is poured over it. The delight spreading across the room is unforgettable.

It Fits to a Tea!

This year, tea is claiming its position as a trendsetting highlight. Make sure your bartenders know how to use it to its full advantage. The complex flavors and subtle aromas of tea pair beautifully with an atmosphere of elegance, but tea-infused cocktails can rock a bar too, making for beverages that won't be forgotten soon. Don’t miss out on the opportunities tea offers at weddings and events this year.



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