Mistakes you've made related to tea...
This morning we were in a rush to the office and decided to pick up some fast-food…. needless to say we don’t eat fast food often (it’s absolutely terrible), but we needed something in our stomachs and quick before the meeting we had. I exchanged my coffee for their sweetened iced tea.
I almost died. It was pure corn syrup and so disgusting that it reminded me how delicious good tea really is AND even in dire circumstances, nothing can be a remote substitute. We ended up not drinking anything until the meeting, when we continued to steep some delicious tea the CORRECT way. Oh yea, we immediately dumped the iced tea.
I have a habit, which I’m trying to break, of oversteeping things. I occasionally mis-judge the amount of sugar that should go in a particular tea, usually early in the morning is when that happens the most. I’ve also made the mistake of ordering tea in restaurants and even if you get to steep the (probably substandard) bag yourself, it takes six visits from the waiter to get all the stuff you need to do it.
I’ve given up on ordering tea at restaurants. The only restaurant that we get tea at is a Chinese restaurant that does DIM SUM SUNDAY brunches. They continually give you teapots with traditional Oolong and it’s always done perfectly.
Totally agree with you about restaurant tea. Besides a nearby Chinese restaurant that serves a pot of white tea with every meal it has been a universally terrible experience for me. Unsweetened iced teas are over-steeped, sweetened ones are barely tea, and stuff you get to do yourself is a mediocre bag in a cup of too much water.
I’m such a snob sometimes, I bring my own pre made loose leaf tea bags to restaurants.
I sometimes buy too much, just because it is on sale.
Opening all of the packages right away.
The nice thing is buying too much is never TRULY a mistake… you just have a longer supply :P
I can’t keep myself from opening all the packages right away either! Even if I’ve ordered 5 different teas I just have to taste them the very same evening, even if it leads to an overfull stomach… :-)
Letting it sit for months or years before drinking it (the first time).
Letting it sit for several more years before finishing it!
Leaving strong smelling samples with the rest of the herd.
Buying large quantities of a tea before I know I like/love it.
Continuing to try tea types and companies that I know I don’t like. Green tea makes me nauseous yet I keep trying it…why not just accept that it’s not for me?
Buying ALL THE TEA and ALL THE TEA EQUIPMENT. I really only need a few things to make excellent tea.
Spending too much money on low quality tea – or buying too much of a tea because it’s cheap.
These all have to do with waste, it seems. Financial and physical. Hmm. Maybe I should heed my own advice, heh. Sometimes I wish I had no tea at all so I could start over with fresh tea and pay better attention to my own tastes. Only recently have I become willing to compost the really bad tea (stuff that I wouldn’t even swap with friends). I used to choke it all down. That would be another mistake. :)
Buying “too much” tea (I don’t know if there is psychologically such a thing, but physically, I suppose so) and getting distracted from time to time and accidently oversteeping are the biggest ones. I’ve also made the mistake of buying too much of a tea I’d never tried before, resulting in me having to drink something I wasn’t very thrilled about just to get rid of it.
Once I tried to brew a tea before going to school, forgot I had to print something so hurried to get that done, ran out the door so I’d be on time, and when I came back home 3 hours later their was an awful, bitter, pitch black mess sitting in my pot (an Irish Breakfast Blend). I’d totally forgotten about the tea!
I’m still choked how I took a nice green tea sample and used boiling water on it, making it undrinkable! I have a sample of Gyokuro that I’m worried I’ll mess up!
The next bad incident was my husband thought it was a good idea to heat chicken stock in my water kettle for making risotto, and he didn’t wash it. And I forgot he used it, so my tea tasted like chicken.
Gyokuro is one of those teas that don’t last too long. Try it before it’s too late! Just don’t use boiling chicken water. :)
Or, here’s another option. It won’t be the same, but try cold brewing the gyokuro. It’s so sweet and refreshing that way.
Thats right! Shoot, thanks Mercuryhime – I should really sipdown that sample and some of my other green samples while I’m at it.
brew some catnip tea in the chicken water and there’s a happy kitty waiting for his first cup of tea :)
Terribly enough, I used to steep a teabag the entire time I was drinking it!
Almost everyone I know drinks tea this way, which doesn’t bother me if they like it that way, but I’ve known quite a few people who disliked tea in general because their over-steeping led them to believe tea is supposed to be very bitter and astringent!
My dad used to drink tea from a pot all day long that was made in the morning with 3-4 tea bags and left to sit. Sometimes it looked like a spoon could stand straight up in it!
Storing a beautiful unopened sencha next to a very strongly flavored gojiberry tea. The gojiberry tastes like sencha now… kidding. I now store heavily scented tea in a totally separate location.
Similar – having an open tea sample out while making chili. Nothing quite like onion flavored green.
Oh man! I forgot to put away a white tea once when my mom was making stuffed red peppers… and thus, Red Pepper White Tea was born. It wasn’t very good. I don’t recommend it.
Onion sounds worse, though!
Red Pepper White Tea – apparently it sounds way better than it tastes. Maybe if we used a smoky lapsong base with our peppers and onions? Or maybe not.
Sooooooo many! Oversteeping tea (by a lot!), buying a lot of a tea before knowing if I really liked it, making green and white tea just like I make black tea etc. But it’s all part of the learning and exploring process, so there not too bad.
My worst crime is definitely oversteeping. Forgetting that I’ve set some leaves to steep until I look over and see this super-colored liquid sitting in the pot. Sometimes this has been complete disaster, other times it’s still a brew that while not worthy of consumption, can still be sipped without dying from every muscle in your face scrunching up and your head imploding.
Storing all my teas together. I am working collecting tins and glass containers to store tea in, but, having just started, there’s a number of them shoved in a drawer, the tastes haven’t had time to leak into each other too much, but, I understand it’ll only get worse.
Do you think even if they are in bags (like the Davidstea type for example) the flavors can still affect each other?
whatshesaid….yes I think if you leave them too long not properly stored the flavors can affect each other. I think unless they are in a airtight tin some leakage(sounds disgusting) will occur. Howevr depending on he plastic the sample is in will have the biggest affect. I recently got a couple samples in what looked like mini ziplock bags and the flavors leaked a bit just in the travels in the mail.
whatshesaid & Froogle_jimmy: actually the DavidsTea bags are heavy duty and airtight, so they will be fine stored in them. The biggest problem is normal ziploc bags with very thin plastic… they leak like crazy! I have only come across a few companies that ship samples in bags like that.
I have had some of my Davids in their foil bag for a couple years (I already know I need to drink them more quickly!) with minimal deterioration and no smell contamination. They are actually my favourite pouch style storage.
I haven’t ordered from DAVIDsTEA’s yet, but, the ones I have most of are in paper bags, not the best seals. They work for the small term…. but, yeah. I also have a handful of samples and 1 oz orders from local tea ships in basically normal ziploc bags. No bueno! :P
My general understanding is if you can smell the tea through the container, it’s not a good thing to keep the tea in.
I make the tea and then get super distracted by something while waiting for it to cool a bit. Next thing I know it’s way too cool.
Oh and the other day I steeped a black as a green. It was actually probably for the best in the end but it still felt incredibly silly.