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(no subject) [Jan. 18th, 2006|10:53 am]
Tea Geeks

Having become hopelessly addicted to the crack that is Jasmine Pearl Green Tea, and having come to the conclusion that American tea dealers' prices are terribly high, I am going to attempt to order a few canisters directly from the dealer my friend dealt with in China. I have the dealer's card with her phone number - in Chinese - and my friend has offered to help me order some. I'm probably going to order three or four canisters - at $12 / 200 grams, it's a real bargain.

Is anyone else interested in ordering a canister for her/himself? Keep in mind that in addition to the $12/canister price, there's shipping from China and then shipping from myself to you. Let's say, $20 total per canister - still an incredible bargain. I'm still in the planning stages here, but I thought I'd feel out what kind of interest there'd be from y'all. I want to share the love that is fine, cheap tea.
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Tea & alcohol? [Jan. 3rd, 2006|03:49 pm]
Tea Geeks

[mood |curiouscurious]

So there's a slew of coffee drinks out there, but what about tea with alcohol? Would you put whiskey in your darjeeling? Cognac in your oolong?

And Long Island Iced Tea doesn't count. XD
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A rosy future [Dec. 20th, 2005|03:05 pm]
Tea Geeks

[mood |busy]
[music |Poozies, "Sorrows Away"]

One of my favourite teas is the now-unavailable Twinings Rose Pouchong (which has apparently been rebranded as something in the Twinings Aromatics line). It's not available in the US, and was damnear impossible to get in the UK (I have a pretty good supply of it thanks to a friend who worked just down from the Twinings shop in London).

HOWEVER, when I was in Whole Foods this afternoon, I discovered The Republic of Tea's "Sip For the Cure" Pink Rose Green tea. The rose flavour is quite pronounced (and the tea flavour is probably overridden by it), but it's quite good. (They also donate money to the Susan G Komen Breast Cancer Foundation).

Worth it, IMO. I'll likely buy more.
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Half-Side Orchid [Dec. 10th, 2005|09:20 am]
Tea Geeks

This is another of the teas our friend Mandy brought back from China. I'd initially thought, because of the tea's appearance, that it was a Pu-erh; half-side orchid looks like small, dark green pebbles. But, in fact, it's a pearl oolong. The tea is rolled and then lightly fermented, hence its appearance.

ankoku_jin mentioned that she likes orchid-type oolongs, so when I didn't detect any floral notes in my first pot of this tea, I asked her about it. This is what she had to say:

Erm, well, to be honest, the first thing my mom said upon seeing them was, "Ew, they look like boogers!" ^^;;;

The floral note is not like a true floral-infused tea, it's more akin to a note one would detect in a wine. Mostly, it tastes like a really good light oolong, fermented just enough to have more body and less of a vegetable edge than a green tea. But where other teas might have a grassy or smoky sort of note to them, these ones have a subtle floral/fruity sweetness.

The flavor develops best when you use water that you've let come down from a boil, and let it steep a good 5 minutes.

I'd only steeped the first pot for three minutes, with water at a full, rolling boil, so I took her advice on the second pot and let the water come down before steeping for five minutes.

The difference between this tea and a true floral-infused tea is like the difference between a wine with a low berry note and a wine that's been flavored with berry juice. The floral note is present, but it's keyed down by the taste of the fermented tea. The floral note is best detected at high termperature; if you let the tea cool too much, the taste of the fermentation takes over.

I'm normally not a big fan of oolong, unless it's accompanied by lots of Chinese food, but I found this to be a pleasant morning tea. Half-side orchid is less pungent and grassy than restaurant-style oolongs, and the added floral note is a nice accompaniment to offput the slight pungency. On the morning after a night of heavy drinking, this was a nice treatment for hangover. XD
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Review: Jasmine Pearl Green Tea [Dec. 8th, 2005|11:08 am]
Tea Geeks


Jasmine Pearl GreenCollapse )
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Straight from Hong Kong... [Dec. 5th, 2005|08:21 pm]
Tea Geeks

My husband's co-worker just got back from visiting her mother in Hong Kong, and she brought along a few things for us, since she knows we enjoy tea:

Pictures!Collapse )

ETA: It's not Pu-erh. She says that it's something new, a tea that's prepared like Pu-erh, but it has an "orchid flavor." The literal name of the tea is "half-side orchid." The other tea in the sealed pouch is "monkey tea," which I've never had before. She has a card from the tea dealer in Hong Kong, who is quite interested in doing business with American clients. If anyone's interested (now or after I review the teas,) let me know. Her prices are outstanding: $12.5 USD for the pearl tea, which would cost me at least $75, or up to over $100, for the same amount from my usual sources. And shipping from Hong Kong is often surprisingly cheap.
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Tea! [Nov. 3rd, 2005|10:32 am]
Tea Geeks

[mood |steeping]
[music |Three Weird Sisters, "Tea" (in my head)]

Mmm...well, worth a look. Not the BEST prices, but they seem to carry something that's possibly similar to Twining's Rose Pouchong.

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Revolution Teas Sample Pack: Review [Sep. 29th, 2005|03:51 pm]
Tea Geeks

[mood |working]
[music |In the Absence of Sun - Duncan Sheik]

So...last week I was wandering through the World Market and got suckered in by that insidious little devil: the sample pack. I've tried these teas at a rate of one or two per day all week and mostly just talked _midoriko_sama_'s ear off about them. So...with her encouragement, I've collected most of my comments, edited down the IM conversations and you all get to benefit from my experience.

As always, these are my opinions...take them for what they're worth.
Your mileage may vary.Collapse )

Okay...now to tackle the teas, I'll go in the order I drank them in.

Ginger PeachCollapse )

Earl Grey with LavenderCollapse )

Golden Flowers HerbalCollapse )

English BreakfastCollapse )

Tropical Green TeaCollapse )

Well, there you have it. I will happily respond to any questions comments or flames and hopefully you all will benefit from my putting myself on the front lines as a guinea pig. ;-)

No need to thank me.
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Hi There [Sep. 16th, 2005|08:03 pm]
Tea Geeks

Upon being directed this way by the brave and kind Tea Bunneh w0rdinista, I decided to make a little introduction to some herbal teas I've just recently found in the local health shop.

They're called Health & Heather, and they comprise the majority of the tea pack which I've just posted for mscongeniality yesterday. thisCollapse ) is one of the teas that I sent MsConny, and it tastes really great. I tried it with honey, sugar and straight, and it was good all around. The peppermint is refreshing without being poingent, and even the smell itself helps to wake you up and brighten the eyes without making them water.

Another blend which I enjoyed was their Apple and Cinnamon. However this one carries a little bit of a warning; The taste of it is decently strong, and comes out the best when you add just that half a teaspoon of honey, but for me, personally, it had a totally soporific effect. Five minutes flat after I had drained the cup, I felt as though I'd taken a sleeping or relaxing pill. Checking the ingredients, I noticed that this tea contains Chicory Root and Hibiscus, which probably did the trick. It's also naturally caffein free, so if one can't sleep, this tea is absolutely wonderful.

An equally nice ninight blend from the same company is the Night Time Fruit and Herbal Infusion. This contains Camomille at 33%, Spearmint, Blueberry leaves at 15%, Orange Blossoms at 12%, Lime flower at 8%, Lemon Grass, Passion Flower Leaves at 2%, Rosebud and Rosehip. It didn't knock me out in the same way the Apple and Cinnamon did, but it tastes absolutely pleasant with honey OR sugar, and it's one of those teas that you'll make three or four cups up just to keep you company while you watch the rain.

Sir Winston teaCollapse )
Another Tea Company that makes marvelous teas is the Sir Winston. Their Earl Gray is the mildest one I've tasted till now without being weak, letting the distinct flavour of lemon come up to the very surface where other Earl Greys usually bury it among other tastes. Also, their fruit black teas are fantastic. Even though Twinnings and Ahmed both make very good fruit teas, The Sir Winston ones manage to give you the feeling that you're eating one of the finest quality jams that you've ever tasted - without leaving you with that very annoying, gooey-tooth sensation jam makes. These teas, if sweetened, are better off with half a teaspoon of sugar rather than honey, because the honey tends to cover some of the finer after-tastes. They also have a great site here, which has some really precious recipes of pastries and on how to blend the taste of teas with other ingredients.
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Four Reviews [Sep. 14th, 2005|10:50 am]
Tea Geeks

Here are four reviews for teas that I've alread posted on my other blog. As you'll see, I buy most of my tea from Tealuxe; I enjoyed their retail stores so much when I lived in Boston, and I like that I can order 10g samples of any tea.

Sweet Chamomile MintCollapse )

Puttabong Estate DarjeelingCollapse )

GyokuroCollapse )

Victorian RoseCollapse )
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