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So today I had a very special tea date with my friend and former co-worker Michelle. We went to a Bavarian Tea Studio! Sanctuary on Green: http://sanctuaryongreen.com/home is located on the east side of Cleveland (I live on the the west) and is studio, gift shop and cafe in a grand old house. They have two sittings Wed-Sat, reservations are required (last Friday I called in the morning and they were booked) and the tea portion is only open half the year (ending next week!) For such limited time open they sure do have a large selection of tea. I pursued the menu before hand and cross reference on Steepster and found many were form Art of Tea and TeaGschwender.

Michelle chose this one though it was actually on my shopping list and we shared a pot. It does have a honeysuckle like sweetness but also nice savory, herbaceous and woodsy qualities. It felt very cleansing and was a good pre-meal tea. For lunch I ordered the Seascape, three preparations of heron: in dill, dill cream sauce and mustard sauce. Oh my goodness, I’ve never had herring before but it’s true what they say, it’s like Scandanavian sushi (by which I actually mean sashimi cos no rice). The sauces were terrific, yum!

We chose a Plum Oolong for dessert and split a rum raisin poppyseed cake, great pairing! I should probably do a separate review on that and a review of the place, but I am tired. Up earlier than normal to shower before fencers came over (by which I mean fence builders not people that fence, of which my brother-in-law is the latter). Also I drive a Prius now, Prii are cool. 200th tasting note, whoo!

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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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