159 Tasting Notes
I’m doing some manly stuff – installing an espresso machine. So I need a manly tea, and the manliest of all is lapsang souchong.
Now I know everyone believes that the Chinese make this stuff, but I reckon it’s actually 6foot4, check-shirted, beer-drinkin’ Canadians along the Yukon (or is that in Alaska?)
Anyway, it’s lumberjack tea all the way, without the Monty Python-style aspersions cast upon these manly lumberjack men, and so as not to be sexist, manly lumberjack women.
So, I get out a dainty little teapot, and pop some in. And pour some hot water. 5 minutes along, and the kitchen smells like a manly campfire. I pour the tea, and it comes halfway up the sides of the very butch oversize cup I’m using. So I resteep it in Panda (that’s my smallest teapot, named after the Fiat Panda, the smallest car I’ve ever been in).
Ah, bliss! As I’ve noted before, the second steep is always less smoky, and the mixed 1st/2nd steep cup hits a lovely midrange note.
It’s refined and elegant.
I’m instantly transported to visions of the tea room at the Ritz in London, with elegant platters laden with sweet, sweet tea cakes and cucumber sandwiches.
A liveried waiter point me in the direction of the eclairs. But sadly, in my vision, there’s a bunch of lumberjacks wolfing them down.
A good cup of tea is a journey, indeed.
This is only my second tea of the day; the first day of our new found democracy in South Australia.
i decided to replace the English Breakfast in the micro-cafe with Jim’s Caravan.
So. it’s infuser and paper cup time.
Great aroma and lovely tan colour.
The smokiness is just at the right level, the brackish warmth is very heart-warming.
A little cup of happiness.
It’s a celebratory mood here. For the benefit of everyone else in the world, you may have heard that Australia is planning to install the same technology to control the internet that countries like China and Iran use. It’s for our own good, apparently.
Then yesterday, the govt. of my home state of South Australia announced new laws censoring election content.
The resultant fury led to a backlash that in ONE DAY repealed that law, as I found out this morning when I got up.
So, a celebratory Darkeeling.
Smooth, warm, soft tannins.
I think any tea would taste good today*. It’s the taste of freedom and democracy restored!
The great Pai Mu Tan Experiment.
I found myself with a coffee machine, 7 teas and a migraine.
Eliminated English Breakfast as too boring, Gunpowder a little bitter for today, Earl Gray, Wild Cherruy Rooibos and Fresh Breeze too fruity(for my migraine causing allergies), and I’d already had a chai.
Then I remember the PMT in my desk drawer. But no teapot. Will an infuser work for this majestic tea?
So, here’s my experiment:
The same amount of tea into an infuser and just naked into a takeaway cup. Infused them both. Then removed the infuser and decanted the other one by affixing a lid and pouring thru the spout.
So, first steep, and it must be said, both excellent. Great fresh taste.
However, on the second steep, there was a marked difference. The un-infusered one was considerably better, with that woodsy tate I’m always rabbitting on about.
So, after bravely drinking 4 cups of tea, I think I’ve proven that PMT prefers to run free!
Big mistake last night. I ate half of an iced fruit juice thing. It said grape juice – the migraine says otherwise. lemon or Orange for sure in there somewhere.
Took some heavy duty painkiller, but couldn’t sleep.
So, it’s my famous green tea cure.
HUGE cup of this delicate green.
The first third is needed to wash away the aspirin/codeine taste.
Then i start appreciating it’s lush floral tones.
Taste, mouthfeel and aroma all combine to start me on the road to recover.
I suppose I’ll have to force myself to drink another cup…
Last night’s supper!
A really great tea, mildly perfumed. It’s long been a favourite, but almost impossible to get. In fact this batch, which I got from someone who used to work for me, was actually from a batch I made myself about 8 months ago, using my usual “add the cornflowers until it looks about right” technique of careful blending.
Like most scented blends, it improves over te hsort/medium term.
I served it with fairy bread! Haven’t had that since I was a kid, but saw it on a menu yesterday. I have a whole bunch of different variations on pink/purple sprinklies, so it was pretty fancy.
It was like a kids tea party for really spoilt kids!
The sweet tea teased my tastebud and lingered on my plaate, forcing me to make another cup.