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Tuk Tuk Chai Blend from Tay Tea

SororiTEA Sisters - Sun, 10/12/2014 - 03:59

Tisane Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  Tay Tea

Tisane Description:

This Thai inspired chai is bursting with flavor. Red vanilla rooibos tea provides the base for this infusion mixed with lemon grass, cinnamon, cardamom and ginger.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I really love autumn and one of the main reasons for that is because as I’ve said before, hot tea just tastes better when it’s chilly outside.  When that chill of autumn nips the air, it just feels better to hold a steaming cup of hot tea in my hand to warm me up.  And no blend of tea does that better than a chai blend.

To brew this Tuk Tuk Chai from Tay Tea, I used my Kati Tumbler and measured out a heaping bamboo scoop of the tisane into the basket.  I generally use some extra leaf when I’m brewing a chai blend because I like my chai blends strong.  If I’m going to go latte with a chai, I add a scoop and a half of leaf, but since I didn’t want to go latte with this particular blend, I just used a heaping scoop.  The rest of the parameters go like this:  195°F for 10 minutes.  Remember, with rooibos, you can steep it extra long without worry that it will get bitter!

This chai blend has an interesting combination of flavors.  The rooibos base has a honey-like flavor with earthy/nutty undertones and these flavors accentuate the earthiness of the spices in this blend nicely.  The cinnamon, cardamom and ginger add a pleasant warmth that is well balanced.  I’m tasting each of the spices without one overpowering the rest.  The lemongrass adds a bright splash of flavor to the cup.  And the vanilla softens the edges and adds a delectable sweet and creamy note.

It’s sweet and spicy, earthy and bright.  It has a very satisfying warmth to it.  It’s something that would be a nice, uplifting drink in the morning and a wonderfully cozy beverage for later at night.  And because it’s naturally caffeine free, it’s something you can drink at any hour without worry that it will keep you up all night.

Fusion

The Devotea - Fri, 10/10/2014 - 20:31
Our personal circumstances changed rapidly over the last few months. We didn’t like what we were doing in the UK for all sorts of reasons, and we wrestled with whether to stay on in the UK and do something else, or leave and come back to Australia. The decision was made in the middle of […]

Tea Drinker: Souheki Mori

Walker Tea Review - Wed, 10/08/2014 - 13:30
 I was sorely tempted to prod Souheki for longer, fuller answers to my questions about the value of the Japanese tea ceremony. Upon reflection, however, I thought it better to leave her responses as they were – simple, straightforward, but full of meaning. There was something about the brevity of the answers that reflected the […]

Tea Review 540: Happy Earth’s Singbulli 1F

Walker Tea Review - Mon, 10/06/2014 - 12:27
  Origin: Singbulli Estate Harvest: 1st Flush, 2014 Score: 92 Price (as of post): 2.6 oz = $19.70  to Walker Tea Review. Get complete access to Member Content.   Sign Up For The Newsletter. Sample provided by Happy Earth Tea. Walker Tea Review- a tea blog with tea reviews and tea tastings. Want to see a […]

5′ con Debbie Han

Tea & Co. - Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:01
by tea alberti 1. How did you start your story with tea? - I’m not quite sure if I understand your question properly. Do you mean how I first started drinking tea? I actually talked about it in the Wall … Continue reading →

El placer del té, renovado

Tea & Co. - Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:01
Placeres una nueva propuesta de TARAGÜI para disfrutar del momento del té sabores más acentuados aromas delicados + nuevo diseño. Se incorporan a la renovada línea de té combinaciones innovadoras de aromas y sabores deliciosos Para disfrutar del té en … Continue reading →

¡Mozo, un mate!

Tea & Co. - Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:01
Zona Taragüi Y el mate llegó a los bares La nueva propuesta de Establecimiento Las Marías para disfrutar del mate en más de 100 bares. Llegás al bar y además de un café o un té podés disfrutar de otra … Continue reading →

taza #1158

Tea & Co. - Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:01
Hostmaster Pattern / teacup by New Martinsville Glass Company

taza #1157

Tea & Co. - Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:01

taza #1156

Tea & Co. - Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:01

taza #1155

Tea & Co. - Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:01
Vintage Youngsware China Fantasy Pattern  

taza #1154

Tea & Co. - Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:01
Noritake China April Cook N Serve Teacup ¿dónde consigo la taza? My Eclectic Heart  

teapot #149

Tea & Co. - Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:01
Details from Willow / colección Teapot diseño by Richard Brendon

taza #1153

Tea & Co. - Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:01
Details from Willow / colección Teacup diseño by Richard Brendon

Pre-Qing Ming White Peony, a rare treat

Red Circle Tea - Sun, 06/10/2012 - 02:01

When you consider the perfect balance of taste, tea liquid color, and processing it’s undeniable: White Peony is one of the simplest, most elegant teas around. White Peony comes from the “Large White” varietal from Fujian.

This tea is picked with the downy bud and first leaf attached. Occasionally, you’ll see the bud with two leaves.

This tea is very delicate and is handled very gently during all stages of processing to preserve bud and leaf shape, and to avoid the bruising that would create undesired changes in taste.

White Peony has a high fragrance and top dry notes of muscat. This tea is sublime in the morning to wake up to, refreshing in the afternoon, or after any meal.

With sweet middle notes of tangerine and base notes of fresh hay, this tea has a clean taste and soothing qualities. White teas have the least oxidized leaves and buds and therefore offer the most anti-oxidants of all teas. This tea is from an unusually early picking and was picked before the Qing Ming festival. This is the first time I’ve seen Pre-Qing Ming White Peony on the US market.  Because of this, it’s on the rare tea page, and is extremely reasonably priced. Check it out, along with Red Circle’s other rare teas here:  http://redcircletea.com/redcircleteas/black_rare/redcircleteas_black_rare.html

Tze Lan Heung, the Purple Orchid

Red Circle Tea - Sat, 06/02/2012 - 21:03

Purple Orchid is one of the most famous of Dan Chong teas. To me it stood out this year as heads and shoulders above the dozens of Dan Chong Teas I tried, and that has a lot to do with its provinance and when it was picked. This Purple Orchid DC was picked before April 4th, before the Qing Ming festival honoring ancestors who have passed. The date is marked on every farmer’s almanac as the beginning of the picking season. But, in rare years, under special circumstances tea buds earlier, and if the weather is just right, and the picking and processing are just right, you wind up with an exceptional tea. This is such a tea. The dry leaves have notes of lichee and purple grapes. But this tea has great character.

 

Wet and warm the leaves, and a surprise is waiting. Notes of dry sweet almond are evoked, nutty and slightly spicy.

The aroma of the steeping tea fills the room.

The resulting cup is creamy, caramely and nutty, and reminds me of sitting in a restaurant and a waiter passes by with another guests desert of freshly caramelized flan.

This is a sumptuous tea, indulgent and relaxing.  Check out all the Dan Chong Oolongs here: http://redcircletea.com/redcircleteas/oolong/redcircleteas_oolong.html

 

Spring Crop Long Jing

Red Circle Tea - Wed, 05/30/2012 - 01:19

Long Jing – or Dragon’s Well. There really is a well at the top of Shi Feng peak in Long Jing Village outside of Hangzhou, China. Shi Feng (Lion’s Peak) is where the best Dragonwell comes from. The soil is sandier, it slows the uptake of minerals and results in a delicate taste and high fragrance indicative of the best teas this area has to offer.

So how do you judge good tea – how do you know what you’re looking at?  Well, when you evaluate Long Jing tea, first look at the dry leaves: They should be uniform, straight (not splayed) and the best are slightly yellow.

 

 

Have a look at a first steeping of these leaves.

And the liquid is a perfect light yellow green color and the consistency is like silk.

The classic flavor profile of this tea is sweet chestnuts and a gentle green bean taste with high notes of sweet grass and springtime on a mountain (I’m not sure that’s a flavor, or aroma, but I’ve smelled it standing in a tea field, so I’m going to go with it). Think chlorophyll. Green, a life-force taste of freshness. The flavor lingers gently for at least an hour in your mouth, and this tea gives more steepings than a normal green tea, it will steep 6 – 7 times in a gong fu clay pot and 5 – 6 times in a Gaiwan.

This year’s Pre-Qing Ming harvest festival tea is rock solid. This is the kind quality of Long Jing tea you have come to expect from Red Circle Tea – absolutely the best on the US market. Period. If by some horrible coincidence, you haven’t had the Long Jing I buy, may I humbly suggest you make this investment in the following: your tea drawer will thank you, your palate will thank you, your friends will thank you- should you be magnanimous enough to share – which you should be: great tea is meant to be shared.  But you will get the deepest thanks and return on investment from your tea education.  There is only one way to learn tea, through drinking it. Sure, you can talk to educators to learn about tea, ceremonies, specifics like soil content and elevation, but really learning to take tea into your culinary repertoire requires that you drink it.  And on occasion you must make an investment in that learning process.  You must drink good tea at some point to really appreciate tea.  If you drink tea, if you want to know tea, if you appreciate tea; you can understand this tea by tasting it. And I cordially invite you to do just that!

Pre-Qing Ming Dragonwell (Long Jing) is available for sale right now at:  http://redcircletea.com/redcircleteas/green/redcircleteas_green.html

Tea Review: Hampstead Tea Earl Grey

It's All About the Leaf - Mon, 05/07/2012 - 15:02

Category: Black Tea Company: Hampstead Tea (website) Ingredients: Fairtrade black tea, natural oil of bergamot Vendor Suggested Preparation: Use one sachet or level teaspoon of tea leaves per person. Brew with freshly boiled water and infuse for up to three minutes

This tea has possibly one of the most well-described packages I have ever seen. The single teabag package reads: “Hamstead Tea, London. Organic Fairtrade Earl Grey with aromatic bergamot. 1 staple-free teabag.”

Wow, that is quite a mouthful. I personally do not know anyone who buys teabags who is also concerned about saving some metal, but by the look of the string attached to the teabag, it makes me wonder why more teabag-producers do not follow this. It seems that Hamstead has implemented an easy way to do away with stables entirely. But how about the tea itself?!

The packaging recommends 3-5 minutes for steeping. The last earl grey that I tried oversteeped even with low steep times, so I boil some water and decide to go for the lower end here with 3 minutes of infusion. While I will admit that I am not big on bagged tea, this tea smells quite good, dry in the bag. A hint of orange provides a nice aroma. The steeping tea gives off a pleasant bergamot aroma. The first sip confirms that 3 minutes was a perfect amount of steeping, unless you prefer your tea stronger. For a bagged tea, this is pretty smooth, but it lacks a bit in the flavor profile. This is definitely a quality bagged tea. On my personal enjoyment scale, I would give it a 65/100.

You can purchase the Biodynamic, Organic and Fairtrade Earl Grey directly from the Hampstead Tea website.

Tea Review: Tea Forte Earl Grey

It's All About the Leaf - Mon, 04/30/2012 - 14:03

Category: Black Tea Company: Tea Forte (website) Ingredients: organic Indian Assam black tea, natural orange flavor, natural bergamot flavor, organic cornflower blossoms Vendor Suggested Preparation: Steep for 3-5 minutes, 208degF

From the moment at which I remove the pyramid infuser from its cardboard cover, I know there is something different about this Earl Grey. The smell of bergamot is not very strong. In fact, it is hardly present at all. Popping the infuser into my Tea Forte Cafe Cup, I fill the cup with just boiled water and let it steep for four minutes…a happy medium in the 3-5 minute range that was given by Tea Forte’s website!

The tea being now prepared, I take a whiff of the steeping, once again surprised by the smell. It is spicy with a bit of a fruity smell. Intrigued, I go on to try this cup of tea, sip by sip. My first sip is possibly the most astringent Earl Grey I have ever tasted! The bergamot is finally hinted at in the aftertaste, but the tea itself is so incredibly astringent that I wonder if I mistimed this tea. I ditch this cup and prepare to steep a new one.

This second cup I steep for only two and a half minutes. I know this is less than what was suggested, but I figure it is better to be safe. This second cup still smells exactly the first one, which worries me slightly, but I forge onward with this tasting! Still astringent, even after such a short steep time. But it is not as bad as the first cup was. The bergamot flavor is very fake and overdone, which is a bit of a turn-off, considering that this is supposed to be Earl Grey, not cologne.

If hunting for a cup of Earl Grey, this is not the tea to which to turn. I recommend trying a different brand. Sorry, Tea Forte, but this tea needs to go back to the mixing room. On my personal enjoyment scale, I would give it a 45/100.

You can purchase the Earl Grey directly from the Tea Forte website.

Joe Clare on Tea Packaging

Cha-Cha-Cha Adventures With Tea - Thu, 02/16/2012 - 22:49

Joe Clare, owner of Edmonton’s Massage Therapy Supply Outlet, doesn’t approve of the new tea stir stick single packaging. Here he is telling all about it.

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