Orchard Empress & Tonic

Orchard Empress & Tonic

The Orchard Empress & Tonic is an enticing and warming blend of Empress Gin, chai tea, apple cider, and tonic water for the perfect libation this fall.

I partnered with Empress 1908 Gin to mix up the Orchard Empress & Tonic recipe! Recipe and ideas are my own.

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The Orchard Empress & Tonic

I’m loving all the fun, fall recipes including this delicious Orchard Empress & Tonic cocktail made with only 4 ingredients! It’s the ideal drink for those days when you want to kick back and relax with an easy-to-make cocktail. Treat yourself this season to this delicious gin-based cocktail. This drink is elevated by using Empress 1908 Gin which balances beautifully with the spicy chai and tart apple cider notes. Empress 1908 Gin is one of my favorite gins to mix with because it’s smooth, botanical and adds the prettiest hue to your cocktails. Keep reading to find out where you can pick up a bottle for all your gin cocktails!

Orchard Empress & Tonic

The Best Spirit for Gin Cocktails

Selecting a gin for your cocktails can be a tricky task. Most gin is juniper dominant, giving it a noticeable pine flavor. But I personally prefer a more balanced, citrus-forward gin with botanical tasting notes, which is why I love Empress 1908 Gin

Empress 1908 Gin is handcrafted in small batch copper-pot stills from Victoria Distillers. This gin includes a signature blend of traditional botanicals like black tea and butterfly pea blossom which gives this spirit its deep purple hue. Inspired by the legendary Fairmont Empress Hotel in Victoria, British Columbia, Empress 1908 Gin comes from tradition with a modern, unique twist. Find out more fun facts about the brand here and order Empress 1908 Gin online here!

Orchard Empress & Tonic

Ingredients for the Orchard Empress & Tonic

  • Empress 1908 Gin: Made with eight botanicals including butterfly pea flower, cinnamon, coriander, ginger, juniper, and rose, this purple-hued spirit boasts herbal, citrus, and juniper notes making it an enjoyable gin to sip on solo too!
  • Apple cider: For that fresh fall flavor, pick up a bottle of your preferred apple cider. I used a fresh bottle from my recent trip to Julian, but I also like TreeTop Honey Crisp Apple Cider which you can get at the grocery store.
  • Chai tea: You can use your preferred brand of chai tea. I used Tazo Chai Tea. Either steep the tea bag in hot water and let it cool or you can make your chai tea concentrate following this recipe and have extra on hand for other chai drinks too! 
  • Tonic water: Top this cocktail with some tonic water to give this tasty drink an effervescent finish. I used Fever Tree Tonic Water
  • Apple slice, sage leaves, and star anise: Don’t forget to garnish this delicious cocktail with an apple slice, sage leaves, and star anise.
Orchard Empress & Tonic

How to Make the Orchard Empress & Tonic

Let’s make the Orchard Empress & Tonic! Start by filling a cocktail glass with ice. Then, add the apple cider, chai tea (make sure it’s already cooled down), and tonic water, and stir with a bar spoon. Next, slowly pour Empress 1908 Gin into the glass, allowing it to float on top of the cocktail. The last step is to garnish with an apple slice, sage leaves, and star anise. Make sure to stir before enjoying. Cheers!

More Fall Cocktails to Enjoy!

If you’re interested in taking Insta-worthy photos of your cocktails and making money too, check out my free training on 5 secrets to high-end food (& drink) photography that makes you more money!

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Orchard Empress & Tonic

The Orchard Empress & Tonic is made with Empress Gin, apple cider, chai tea, and tonic water for a refreshing riff on a traditional cocktail.
Prep Time3 minutes
Total Time3 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Keyword: gin and tonic
Yield: 1


  • Cocktail glass
  • Bar spoon


  • 2 oz Empress 1908 Gin
  • oz apple cider
  • ¾ oz chilled chai tea
  • 4 oz tonic water
  • Garnish: apple slice, sage, star anise


  • Fill a cocktail glass with ice. Add apple cider, chai tea and tonic water and stir.
  • Slowly pour Empress 1908 Gin into the glass, allowing it to float on top of the cocktail.
  • Garnish with an apple slice, sage leaves and star anise. Stir before enjoying.

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