Lemony Queen - Tej & Limoncello Ice

Lemony Queen - Honey Limoncello Cocktail

Gin, honey, lemon – what’s not to love?
That’s what makes the Bees Knees cocktail such a classic.
But with today’s plethora of spirits and ingredients, sometimes ‘classic’ can often mean boring.

A Tej Cocktail With A Lemony Buzz

Here I turn the bee hive inside out, adding a little complexity and fun.

Upping the ante on the traditional, I introduce Bols Genever 21, a dutch style gin with a dark and malty profile similar to that of whiskey, a perfect compliment to the honey.

To toss it up, I also forego using strictly honey, incorporating Ethiopian Tej –  a rich fermented honey wine with hoppy notes that balance perfectly with the genever.

And finally, Her Majesty– a limoncello ice queen, made with lemon zest and lavender. Once the tej-genever base is added, her dilution adds a sour/floral complexity that finishes off this classic twist.

Limoncello Ice

Lemony Queen – This tej cocktail is crowned with a limoncello ice queen


Lemony Queen

3 oz. Ethiopian Tej (or honey wine/mead)

1 1/2 oz. Bols Genever 21

3/4 Honey Simple Syrup

3/4 oz. Limoncello

1 oz. Lemon Juice

1 Tbsp. Lemon Zest

1-2 Dashes Lavender Bitters

2 oz. Water



Stir the tej, genever and honey simple syrup in cocktail shaker until fully dissolved. Add ice and shake until chilled.


Mix limoncello, lemon juice, lavender bitters and lemon zest with approximately 2 ounce of water (depending on ice mold, approximately 3 to 1 water ratio). Freeze mixture.

Place the ice bee alone in a glass and serve the honey/gin base on the side in a separate carafe.

 The limoncello queen gradually dilutes, releasing the citrus and floral notes.

Lemony QueenLemony Queen - Limoncello Cocktail