Thursday, August 29, 2013

Seth Purchases Tea

I love tea. I drink anywhere from three to six cups a day on average and can pretty much be found with a teacup in hand on any occasion. I purchase the vast majority of my tea from Tea Trekker, a local business that's walking distance from my office at Smith College. The owners of Tea Trekker are amazing and always hook me up with really lovely tea. They visit the regions that they source their tea from and always know just what to recommend.

I have from Tea Trekker right now:

  • Yin Zhen Silver Needles (white tea)
  • Yellow tea (from last year -- I forget what it's calling, but it's aging well)
  • Sencha Fukamushi (green -- Japanese)
  • Gold-Flecked Emeral Tips (green -- Chinese)
  • Jasmine Pearl
  • Tieguanyin Anxi Monkey-Picked (oolong)
  • Chai

All delicious! Sometimes however, one might enjoy a cup of flavored tea to mix things ups. Enter Seth.

When we went to the Boston Public Library for tea, Seth got to try some of the Harney & Sons raspberry herbal tea and loved it. I'm not a big drinker of herbal tisanes, so he hadn't had a chance to try many herbal teas at home. Seth in fact liked the tea so much that he decided to order it, plus some other herbal samples from Harney. He also got me some of there Hot Cinnamon Spice black tea (one of the few black teas I really like). Harney gave us a few bonus tea sachets.

Seth got five sample size, which look like around 1 oz. of tea. From left to right he got:

  • Passion Plum
  • Peach Fruit
  • Strawberry Kiwi
  • Rooibos Chai
  • French Super Blue Lavender

The French Super Blue Lavender was purchased for me because blue is my favorite color, and I love lavender. The picture on the Harney website showed the infused tea looking like this. As you can see the tea itself is lovely and the infusion is very striking.

I steeped the tea up straight away! It smelled amazing -- a very strong lavender scent. I made the tea using tap water, heating it to boiling, and steeping it for 5 minutes as recommended (and as I would usually do for an herbal tea). While the tea had a great scent and a lovely floral flavor it was sadly not purple/blue in color at all. The tea water was fairly clean with a slight grey tint in the cup. I don't really care about this so much because the tea was very pleasing, but it's something to consider if you're planning to purchase this tea for the color. I'm thinking that the factor in getting the great color might be the water that you use. Perhaps my tap water has some element that is causing the water to not get as blue as it could. I might try to steep this tea with filtered water to see if this makes a difference.

Seth tried the Passion Plum tea and liked it a lot. (It tasted a bit too much like hibiscus for my taste. I'm not into hibiscus, and it's used in a lot of teas.) He's looking forward to having more of the Raspberry Herbal tea as the weather gets cooler. I'm pretty excited that Harney has made him into a tea drinker.

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