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38

Oh dear too much leaf! Bitter, bitter, bitter! Let’s try this again shall we? I need to drink down my Upton samples anyway and what better day to do so than the day of the Olympic Opening Ceremonies in London? There performance is to be called “Isles of Wonder”, that Anglophile in me is very excited and I may have to find some sort of live streaming source online in four hours, because 7:30 pm (EST) on NBC seems too far away ;)

Okay rebrewed with a pinch of rock sugar, a level teaspoon and I shaved off 5 degrees and 30 sec. Much better, though admittedly a tad light. It gets astringent very quickly in the cup though, perhaps because of the amount of sediment from the fine cut leaves that got through my best strainer. Cannot recommend this, but will drink it. I have another Upton Earl Grey but I think I may just switch over to Bergamot Rose Laoshan Black, that is until the husband comes home and we have some of his British blends.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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Bio

Druid, artist, poet, mum, lover of tea, ritual and myth. I grew up on Celestial Seasons herbals but fell in love with straight loose leaf tea working at my local Teavana for a year. I am grateful for the introduction and the experience, but have moved on.

I see tea as an experience for the senses, I like to imagine tasting the land and the weather as well as the effect of sun, air, fire and the human hand. I have a soft spot for shu pu’er, yabao, scented oolongs, wuyi oolongs, taiwanese tea as well as smooth naturally sweet blacks, creamy greens and surprisingly complex whites.

I began ordering lots of samples from Upton to educate myself on different varieties of tea we didn’t have at work and have fallen head over heels for the unique offerings from Verdant Tea. I am learning things I like: buttery mouthfeel, surprising sweet or spice notes, woodiness, mineral notes, depth and complexity and things I don’t: astringency, dry and sour notes.

I collect tea tins and am in danger of collecting pots, though I am trying to restrain the urge due to current lack of space. I brew mostly in a glass infuser mug or a tea maker, only using cast-iron for company now (still need to get a gaiwan) and tend not to sweeten my teas unless they are British or fruity and iced, which is not often.

As far as ratings, I lack a definite system and haven’t been assigning numbers lately, wanting to spend multiple sessions with a tea first. I usually only log a tea once, unless it is a new harvest or I have significantly different observations, but will go back and edit or comment if I find something interesting or new.

Location

Baker Street, Berea, Ohio

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