70

So I now have my new variable temperature kettle from Bosch to play with. (I finally found the one I wanted through an Italian vendor, so I didn’t have to produce any sort of documents at all to resolve the hostage situation that generally ensues when I receive a suspicious package from a foreign country.)

The Palais des Thés teas are among the greens I’ve been particularly curious about reevaluating. I’m very much against oversteeping greens, so I generally go for 1.5 minutes and boiling, or near-boiling water, as per the usual Lupicia instructions; I’ve found it works well for most flavoured greens, but some of the more delicate ones do deserve a somewhat lighter touch.

This is not one that really benefits from a longer steep at a lower temperature, however; the base still comes off fairly average, the vanilla still doesn’t pop. And still the utter weirdness of a melty caramel nose that’s entirely elusive in the cup.

Maybe if I very surreptitiously drop some kind of toffee bon-bon in and let it dissolve? Or is that cheating?

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Ysaurella

I didn’t know Bosch was manufacturing variable temp kettle, sounds nice

cteresa

oh that is nice. Very tempting. Is the recipient inside metal or plastic?

Anna

Well, I was going to get this one, and then it was out of stock by the time I got back to Italy. It seemed like a sign to get something I won’t get too attached to (ugh, the stuff I usually accumulate over the course of a year). The inside has a stainless steel base and plastic sides, so it’s definitely not for the true purists. I think it’s a good beginner’s variable temp kettle, though.

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Comments

Ysaurella

I didn’t know Bosch was manufacturing variable temp kettle, sounds nice

cteresa

oh that is nice. Very tempting. Is the recipient inside metal or plastic?

Anna

Well, I was going to get this one, and then it was out of stock by the time I got back to Italy. It seemed like a sign to get something I won’t get too attached to (ugh, the stuff I usually accumulate over the course of a year). The inside has a stainless steel base and plastic sides, so it’s definitely not for the true purists. I think it’s a good beginner’s variable temp kettle, though.

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Bio

I’m going to try all the teas.

Then I will choose a lucky few perfect specimens, and we will live happily together in my tea cupboard.

Forever.

  • * *

2014

This year, all bets are off. I am going to drink both peppermint and chamomile and possibly suffer a little. But it’s okay – it’s for science.

I’m doing Project Jasmine, Project Peach and Project Unflavoured Green.

In terms of flavoured teas, Lupicia and Mariage Frères have become my massive favourites, and I have learned that Dammann Frères/Fauchon/Hédiard and Butiki aren’t really for me.

The O Dor, Adagio and Comptoir des thés et des épices are all on this year’s I’d like to get to know you better list.

2013

Getting back into tea drinking last fall, I was all about rooibos. This past spring has been all green tea, all the time, with some white additions over the summer. Currently attempting a slow, autumnal graduation to black teas. Oolongs are always appropriate.

The constant for me, flavour wise, is the strong presence of fruity and floral notes. Vanilla is lush, as long as it’s not artificial. Peach, berries, mango. Cornflower, rose, lavender.

No peppermint.

No chamomile.

No cinnamon.

Ever.

  • * *

My ratings don’t reflect the ‘What does this tea do for me?’ standard, but rather my own ‘What would I do for this tea?’ scale.

100-90
My absolute favourites. Teas I would travel for – or, in any case, pay exuberant postage for, because they simply have to be in my cupboard. Generally multi-faceted teas with complex scents and flavours. Teas with personality. Tricky teas.

89-80
Teas I wouldn’t hesitate to buy again if and when I came across them. Tea purchases I would surreptitiously weave into a travel itinerary (Oh! A Lupicia store! Here?! My word!).

79-70
Teas I enjoyed, but don’t necessarily need to make any kind of effort to buy again.

69-0
Varying degrees of disinterest and contempt.

Location

Rome, Italy

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