Personal Collection

Recent Tasting Notes

88

My first, 5:30 am, pre-jentacular kick-starting tea is always an important one.
Sometimes, I go really light with a white or green to ease into the day, sometimes a hearty black as a heart starter.
Unusually today, I’ve gone the middle ground.
The aroma is floral, due to the cornflowers. The taste is floral, due to the cornflowers. And the aftertaste is floral, due to the cornflowers.
In fact, it tastes like I have mixed together musk sweets and cornflowers with a stack of icing sugar, and painted the inside of my mouth with them.
The lesson today is: context! Don’t expect a lovely floral afternoon escape to fill in such a key tea timeslot. It’s not up to the job.
Just not the right tea at the right time.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 45 sec

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88

Great Summer Saturday Morning.
Trilok Gurtu on the Stereo
French Toast with tea salt on my plate.
And mmmmm blue mountain. Perfectly brewed, expertly blended* exquisite paragon of a cup of tea.
Ahhhhh. Floral notes that sing in the mouth, but quietly and angelically. Tea that is happy to hold up the stage without wanting to dominate it.
More, please.

(*yes, blended by me. Commercially, a while back)

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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88

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.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 30 sec

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88

Last time I went to the tea shop I used to own and asked for this, they told me it had never existed.
So when I found some in my son’s cupboard last night, I demanded a cup on the spot.
It’s just a lovely tea.
The cornflowers always remind me of those pink lolly cigars and musk sticks we had as children (I don’t suppose it’s legal to make a sweet that looks like a cigar any more, ones that look like cigarettes were banned thirty years ago)
So it really shouldn’t work, a good dryish black tea with something that has a rather childish taste.
But it does, it does so well. I used to make this tea up as a base for muffins and put extra cornflowers though them.
So, you have a fine edge of sickly, flowery sweeteness running through an otherwise impeccable Ceylon black.
It’s a bit of a guilty pleasure.
I purloined a little of this for home, along with a black rasperry tea I shall review next.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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