Saturday, March 23, 2013

Lapsang & Raspberries

Not in the same cup. Although looking at today's title, it doesn't seem like such a bad idea to try. A nice, sweet fruity taste paired...maybe not with traditional Lapsang, but a lighter smokey tea, like Bohea or Black Dragon?

I have to say, I'm a little annoyed that Teas, Etc has been out of both Raspberry Tart and Bohea every time I've gone to order for the last several *months*. This does not bode well for business, in my opinion. However, I have found replacements that seem to be working nicely, so no lasting harm, I suppose.

I like raspberry tea, but not enough to drink it "just because". The fact is, it helps alleviate certain female ailments to the extent that I've come to rely on it heavily from month to month. So I finally searched my other favorite tea retailers and found an herbal tisane at Adagio called "Raspberry Patch" that includes dried raspberries. I wasn't sure if that would work, since the leaves have more of the substance that's supposed to help, but I mixed a bit of it with the Harney & Son's Supreme Breakfast that I'm not fond of, and it both improved that tea and worked as a nice painkiller, so win-win!

On the Bohea front, the replacement I've found is a blend of organic black tea (?) and Lapsang, which results in a nice, mellower smokey tea for those days when a full on campfire isn't really necessary. Black Dragon from Tantalizing Teas is excellent...and I think I just might try mixing it with a little of that raspberry patch tea next month to see how it turns out!

As for my Tea Words - I've been failing miserably on those. I've been drinking excellent teas lately, so perhaps I can get back into the groove here soon...

In the meantime...what's in your cup?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Tea Words: Feb. 17 - 23, 2013

Elyse's Blend - Harney & Sons
2/18 @ 8:30am - Light, mellow, meh.

Boulder Breakfast - The TeaSpot
2/18 @ 11:15am - Burnt, over brewed, yuck!

Yunnan Puerh - Adagio
2/19 @ 8:30am - Mild, uneventful

Pink Grapefruit - Teas, Etc.
2/20 @ 8:30am - bright, refreshing

Harvest Spice - The Tea Spot
2/21 @8:30am - sweet, dry

Yunnan Noir - Adagio
2/22 @8:30am - deep, rich, smooth, heavenly

I managed to keep track of some cups this week, and as you might have noticed, the week didn't start out very well tea-wise. Weds and Thursday were okay, and then Thursday night I got my two tea orders from Adagio and Tantalizing Teas. Hooray! Good Yunnan tea never tasted so fabulous - it had been too long.  
Needless to say, I'm looking forward to this week's more back-of-the-cupboard cuppas for a while. What's in your cup this week? 

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Harvest Spice from The Tea Spot

I didn't do tea words last week again - and I'm actually disappointed in that. I'm not giving up on the project. I just need to set up a reminder for a few days until it becomes a habit.

I didn't get any tea ordered last weekend either, but it's on my list for this morning. Now I'm getting down to the teas in my cupboard that I've set aside for whatever reason (normally because I either didn't like them, or something put me off. 

Hence my cuppa this morning. 

Last fall, I ordered a tin of Harvest Spice from The Tea Spot. I expected more of a chai-like experience, but when I opened the tin, it smelled more like a Cinnamon gummy bear, or hard cinnamon candy. Neither of which I'm particularly fond of. Cinnamon in tea tends to make the tea rather drying at the back of the throat anyways, a feeling I don't care for, so I set it aside and never got around to actually trying it. 

Friday morning, I found myself nearly out of the teas I truly like, and searching for something different so I could save the rest of those for random mornings while I wait for another order to arrive. Harvest Spice was sitting on the counter, and I decided to be brave and go for it. If nothing else, hot cinnamon would keep me warm at work. I just hoped it wouldn't dry out my throat too bad. 

Surprisingly, it wasn't as drying as I'd expected - a little more than the smoother teas I generally drink, but certainly "drinkable". And while it *smelled* hot (spicy), the taste was milder than expected as well. I can't say I enjoyed it as much as a smoother tea, but it's not bad, and actually very warming on a cold winter day. 

So this morning, I thought I'd try making a latte out of it. Half a tsp of sugar, and a splash of milk. It's pretty good, the sugar really brings the cinnamon flavor out, and the milk sort of buffers the spicy effect on the tongue a bit. 

This will never be my favorite tea - I prefer the cardamom/cinnamon roll flavor of chai to the true cinnamon flavor, personally. I think my husband might like this though - he's a cinnamon candy fan, and I'll certainly finish off the tin before warmer weather sets in. 

Next week, tea words! And with any luck at all, some new tea in the mail. The tins and bags I'm staring down now don't excite me in the slightest, but I may have to find a way to make them work in the short term...

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Tea 9-1-1!

Okay, okay. So it's nothing so dramatic as that (for foreign readers, 9-1-1 is our emergency number here in the states). But my tea words project has fallen behind, sadly.

I need new teas. Better variety. More single estates. Something exciting and new!

Heck, I just need to replenish my tea cupboard, really. I've been waiting to place an order with Teas, Etc. because I need more of their Bohea and Raspberry teas, but they've been out of Raspberry for *so* long, I fear I'm going to have to hunt down another source (something with real raspberry's a good hormone balancer).

I've been out of good Yunnan teas for months now...along with Black Dragon Pearls (Adagio), and I have one teaspoon of keemun left. One!

It's getting tragic around here, I tell ya.

I also need a new tea travel mug. I've managed to wear out all of mine. And I just can't decide. It's a big decision! Nothing the leaves are meant to stay in though - my biggest pet peeve is oversteeped tea, and I don't drink greens/whites when I'm on the run (need caffeine!). Anyone out there have a travel mug they just *love*?

I'm drinking the last of my Boulder Breakfast (The Tea Spot) today...and paying bills so I know what I have left for a tea budget this month. At the very least, I *need* a good Yunnan. *Need*, I tell you.

What's your must-have tea? The one you can't possibly live without?