Wadmalaw Island Iced Tea-Thirsty Thursday’s Back!

A refreshing drink that embraces the traditional beverage of the South-sweet tea! Add Sweet Tea Bourbon from Firefly Distillery, scuppernong wine from Irwin House Vineyard (both located on the same property on Wadmalaw Island, South Carolina) ,lemon juice, a few drops of orange bitters, a slice of lemon or a scuppernong to garnish and you have an exhilarating libation perfect to serve with a low country boil or a pig pickin’. Although Wadmalaw Island Iced Tea is an alcoholic beverage, it doesn’t have the potency of the classic Long Island Iced Tea, a concoction of gin, tequila, vodka, Triple Sec, cola and a sweet and sour mix. A definite one drink max there!

Firefly Sweet Tea Bourbon is an infusion of  tea leaves from the Charleston Tea Plantation, the only tea plantation in America, real sugar cane and a handcrafted Kentucky straight Bourbon Whiskey from acclaimed Buffalo Trace Distillery. With a lower alcohol content, this unique bourbon is great served on the rocks or as a tall drink diluted with spring water!  

Recipe adapted from The Lee Brothers Southern Cookbook, this recipe make approximately 1-1/2 quarts. Although Firefly Sweet Tea Bourbon is recommended, you may use your another tea-infused bourbon of choice and for the scuppernong wine, an inexpensive Madeira can be substituted.

Wadmalaw Island Iced Tea

1/2 (4 ounces) cup Firefly Sweet Tea Bourbon, or bourbon of choice

1 (750-ml) bottle scuppernong wine or Madeira

1 cup (8 ounces) freshly squeezed lemon juice (6-8 lemons)

8-10 drops orange bitters

2 cups (16 ounces) tonic water or club soda

For Garnish

Lemon slices and fresh scuppernongs (green) or muscadines (purple)

In a large pitcher, mix all ingredients with the exception of the tonic water or club soda and stir thoroughly. Fill 8 on the rocks glasses with ice cubes and pour 4 ounces of the Wadmalaw Island Iced Tea into each glass leaving about 1-inch space from the rim of the glass. Top each drink with about 2 ounces of club soda and garnish with lemon slices and scuppernongs or muscadines when in season.  If you like a stronger drink, float a little Firefly Sweet Tea Bourbon over the top, not stirring it into the drink. Enjoy!!

If you like this post, you might be interested in these articles:

The Original Firefly-Sweet Home-Videos

Irvin House Vineyard

The Charleston Tea Plantation

Muscadines and Scuppernongs-Recipes, Information and Resources
Photo-per-Diem-A Bounty of Fresh Vegetables and photos from the South Carolina Low Country


Please do not use images or text without my permission.

I received no reimbursements for any of the products mentioned here and was not paid by anyone to write this post. 


  1. Chiara
    August 18, 2011 / 8:48 pm

    what a refreshing drink! I love it!

  2. Rosa's Yummy Yums
    August 21, 2011 / 9:42 am

    Oh, it looks so refreshing and delicious!Cheers,Rosa

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