355 Tasting Notes
It was actually a tad sunny here this afternoon, so the kids and I played outside. The little man had his jeans on backwards, orange rain boots, and his blue fleece coat on, unzipped with no shirt on underneath. And we played in the front yard for all the world to see. You see, the mailman would be arriving any minute. I had been waiting all day for his arrival. And it was close to 4pm at this point. When we saw him coming, all three of us ran to meet him.
Our mailman is not your average mailman, he’s straight out of sesame street. Knows all the kids names, what’s going on in the neighborhood, loves to chat endlessly. And I normally enjoy it, but today I wanted to grab my package from him and run inside to get tasting. I was as nice as I could be under the circumstances, but my first order from Butiki was in my hands, and I had things to do.
I had a pretty decent selection to choose from, but enjoy flavored black teas in the afternoon, so I went with the pumpkin creme brûlée. Smelled a lot spicier than I expected, but I never tip my nose up to a little extra spice. I steeped it a little longer than the suggested 2.5 mins, but I like my black teas pretty strong. Then I added a very slight amount of brown rock sugar per the websites instructions. I’ve tried brown rock sugar on a number of occaisions, but I just really love raw honey in my tea. So after a few sips trying to drink the tea the “right” way, I caved and added my honey and a splash of steamed milk and a dollop of froth. My first thought as the tea went down, “Holy crap, I just love tea.”
This is a really great flavored black tea. Not perfumey at all, which is a huge pet peeve of mine. I love the spice and was surprised at how spicy the tea remained after a second steep (with no milk or honey in the second cup).
This will definitely be taking up residence on my shelf. I can’t wait to try the next one!
After the Rishi GenMai with matcha yesterday that was brewed with 1 Tbsp per cup that was super strong, but also super tasty, I decided to try this one with a little extra in the basket too. Not quite 2 Tbsp, but about 4 tsp (for my 16 oz mug). I only steeped it for about a minute and I think Rishi has it right with this one. You gotta start with more tea in the basket. I don’t want to use less and steep for longer as it gets bitter super fast. From now I’m brewing this type with a minimum of 2 tsp per cup. As expected, the second steep doesn’t have the matcha flavor, but the genmai cha is still tasty. And with the extra tea in there, it’s much stronger.
Fun when you stumble upon a new and improved way of doing things!
I was looking forward to this part of the day all day. Settling in the couch with the big kid (13) to watch Community and enjoy my toasty tea in my cast iron pot. It used to be a beer. And sometimes still is. But man, these roasty toasty teas are really good for the end of the night! And just slightly healthier…
I’m anxiously awaiting some tea from Butiki that the USPS site says will be here tomorrow. Yay! In the mean time, I’m kind of bored with all my flavored teas. I had another Sweet Almond Tea with a bit of steamed milk and honey simply because I haven’t had it all that often. But it will be going back on the shelf for awhile. Two days in a row is a bit much for that one. On the plus side, I had a ton of left over steamed milk so my 3.5 year old asked if I could make him a “tea” drink. I added some honey to the milk and a lot cinnamon and we had a little tea party. With the little Bean pouring us some pretend tea out of her fisher price tea pot. All in all, a great way to have tea.
Rainy day here in pdx, surprise surprise, and the early morning is catching up with me. But the kids are asleep (for now) so it’s time for my local chai. I love Townshend’s Tea. They have a great shop/cafe here in portland. Right across from my favorite fabric shop, which is next to the best vegetarian taco cart in town. The trifecta. The rain sucks here, but we have our perks!
FYI — I make my masala chais with my Breville Tea Maker and I let the tea steep in the boiling water for about 10 minutes. Then I use my breville milk cafe (that I bought just for making chais and other tea lattes) to get the milk nice and frothy and then pour them both into my mug with some honey. Yum.
The little bean woke up at 5am today. I got her back to sleep and had just gotten back to sleep again when she was up again at 5:40, got her back down just in time to get the 13 year old up for school. Any second now, I expect to hear the creaking of the 3 year old’s door. I need something strong this morning.
I’ve been trying to cull through my overly eager tea collection and found this tin of rishi that I must have bought at the store when I got my breville and was buying any and all tea that looked interesting. Anyway, as I’m knee deep in a genmai matcha phase, it’s perfect timing. Except that its labeled best by nov 2012. Oh well.
It says to use 1 TABLEspoon per 8oz. That’s crazy! So in my 16oz mug, I put 6 tsp of tea. Steeped for a minute and boom! That S—- is strong! I even looked on their website to see if it was a misprint. Nope.
I like it a lot. It’s nice and toasty and the right amount of sweet for me (which isn’t much — in fact, my ultimate version of this tea would be a tad salty). But seriously, 1 Tbsp per cup means I’m going to blow through this already small tin, and considering I bought it at whole foods, I’m sure it wasn’t cheap.
Definitely glad I found it buried back there though. It was probably even better back in November!
I just made this. A nice afternoon treat on a rainy portland day! If you like almond, you can’t go wrong with this tea. It really does have sweet flavor to it, but doesn’t taste fake either. I really enjoyed it. I added a little raw honey and some steamed milk and made a latte out of it. Really good stuff. If you like almond, of course.