Tea For Me Please

The Perfect Arnold Palmer

Nothing says summer like ice cold black tea and lemonade

Is It Possible to Decaffeinate Tea?

I try my best to answer an age old question.

What Countries Grow Tea?

Tea can be found in over 60 different countries.

8 Things You Should Do Before Starting a Tea Business

Important tips for getting started in the the tea biz.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Erborian 3-in-1 Mask Matcha Green Tea Blast Mask

It's not often that I write about beauty products here but I recently won a Twitter contest run by +Palais des Thés. I received a box of 8 packets of this mask as well as a box of their Sencha Ariake. I was definitely intrigued because one of the ingredients of the mask is powdered green tea from the Korean Boseong botanic garden. The packet contained a clay-like powder. It was fairly simple to use. Just add water, lather and apply.

I have fairly sensitive combination skin so using new products can be dicey. It did have an exfoliating affect it was not irritating or overly abrasive. I was skeptical but I have to say that my skin felt amazing the next day. There was definitely a visible difference in the visibility of pores. I tried it out in the midst of a summer heat wave. Long, sweaty days at work had not been doing my skin any favors but after applying this before bed, I woke up feeling really refreshed. This product is a little pricey but as a once in a while treat I'd definitely consider picking up some in the future.

3-in-1 Mask Matcha Green Tea Mask received as prize in Twitter contest run by Le Palais des Thés.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Global Tea Hut: July 2015 - Mountain Wind

Wow, I'm really behind on sharing my +Global Tea Hut experiences with you all! Good tea takes time I suppose. The puerhs that they have sent in the past have been some of my favorites so I was excited to see Mountain Wind in this envelope. The leaves were incredibly beautiful, especially as they slowly unfurled in my bowl. One of the most valuable lessons that this subscription has taught me is bringing things back to basics. Fancy equipment is nice but it's easy to get caught up in having "stuff" and the technical mechanics of brewing. At the end of the day all you really need is a bowl, hot water and a handful of leaves.

The taste was vegetal with wonderfully sweet peach notes. There was very little bitterness which was surprising considering how young the tea is the way that it was prepared. This is truly one of those teas that I was that I could purchase more of. The July issue of Tea & Tao Magazine focused on water. Water as the mother of tea was a recurring theme that tied together the many articles inside. Their stories of gathering water from mountain streams really made me wish that I lived near such a source.

It's tempting to hoard these leaves for a special occasion but I know better than that. I'll be planning a session to finish them soon, perhaps outdoors. I've been meaning to have some tea by the water so this is a good incentive to finally do it.

You can find out more about Global Tea Hut here.

Monday, August 31, 2015

Happy Earth Tea Concubine Oolong Spring 2013

Country of Origin: Taiwan
Leaf Appearance: dark, tightly rolled
Ingredients: oolong tea
Steep time: 30 seconds
Water Temperature: 212 degrees
Preparation Method: porcelain gaiwan
Liquor: brassy gold

Sometimes I do a happy dance when I reach into my "to do" pile and pull out something really awesome. That's exactly what happened when I grabbed this offering from +Happy Earth Tea. Who wouldn't get excited about a highly oxidized concubine oolong from Dong Ding? The very same leaf hoppers that bring us Oriental Beauty have bitten the leaves which are then processed like a typical rolled oolong. The result is an intensely sweet and aromatic treat for the senses. I rarely rinse oolongs so I got right to drinking with this one. Nutty and sweet toasted notes were followed by hints of apricot and orchid. The aftertaste reminded me of brown sugar or the carmelized topping of a crème brûlée. In short, this tea was absolutely delicious. Once unfurled, the leaves looked quite dark and almost leathery. Part of me gets a little thrill when I find bug bites on my tea. Believe it or not, that means it's the good stuff! I drank through at least six infusions and lost count after that. While I wouldn't call this selection a daily drinker, you definitely do get a lot of bang for your buck.

Concubine Oolong Spring 2013 sample provided by Happy Earth Tea.