1953 Tasting Notes
Ahhhhhhhc—-tober, finally! Sweats and nippy mornings and leaves starting to turn and cuddle-up evenings caused me to upend the stash and pull out some oldies but goodies. My personal box is an oldie; the tea is a goodie. Wonderfully sweet and stevia-free (sorry, y’all; can’t stand it) with a lovely balance of apple flavor. And I like chicory. May the first breath of autumn give you a chance to catch your breath and count your blessings this weekend.
Ever been to Silver Dollar City? One whiff of this and I was hiking in the Deepwoods on the way to Rube Dugan’s Diving Bell (long gone) to see that cute Junior Dugan guy that asked me to marry him…but I digress. All that sentimentality caused me to throw three bucks at a packet from the Savoy sample rack.
At five minutes (max recommended time) this was a little too heavy on the cinnamon and light on the maple corn, but was still a tasty, sweet autumnal snack in a cup. Will let up on the time next round to see if that changes the mix a bit.
Oh…with a little curious kitchen alchemy, I think I have whipped myself up a new friend: equal parts chicory, cocoa nibs, lemon peel. Long five-minute steep. He’s mellow, sweet, chocolatey, healthy, low-caf, and chocolatey. Did I say chocolatey? Next time, we’ll see if he plays well with milk. Or orange peel instead of lemon. This could be the beginning of a beautiful relationship…. ;)
Confession: I did not buy any of this, as I’m not much of a lapsang souchong fan, but the smokey, leathery, fruity, pipe-tobacco scent relocated me temporarily to Holmes’ Baker Street or the offices of Cyrus Barker. (Barker & Llewellyn series by Will Thomas. You need to read them. But I digress.) Just thought I’d pass this along to all you smoke lovers.
Savoy has recently started selling in tins—for those of us who are close enough for live store visits, the young lady who took care of us said they’re offering 10% off when you bring the tin back for a refill.
The trip to Savoy was part of a (semi-milestone) anniversary date…I’m giving away my geezerness here, but part of my present from hubby was the Sears and J.C. Penney mail order catalogs from Fall 1985. I’l be up all night compiling my order :)
With all due respect to the vendor, when I saw “Chamomile Black Tea” on a seller’s website (can’t remember whom) the Cheapster started whispering in my ear: “Don’t buy that. You can make it!” And so I did. Tossed a teaspoon of bulk-bin chamomile leaves in a steeping basket with some good-quality leftover Keemun. Badda-bing! A very pleasant afternoon treat. The Keemun toned down the strength of the chamomile; the chamomile added a little uptick to the black tea. This will be a repeat blend in my kitchen!
Green tea doesn’t get enough love at my house: especially when I’m given the opportunity (Liquid Proust, I think this came from your stash) to try something new and fine. This is a tai ping hou kui of unknown provenance, but oh, how refined and smooth it is! Big ol’ wide, flat leaves that were generous and accepting of my sloppy, Midwest-farmer-messy-kitchen-western-style—steep. Was the color of good, light olive oil and satiny on the tongue. Tastes like sweet hay mown from a field that has honeysuckle growing in the fencerow. Thanks for the intro to this variety!
Labor Day weekend was not the restful idyll I had hoped for (unscheduled elder care needs at Dad’s farm, followed up with minor yucks of my own, and a day of catching up what I had to let go the other two days) so this morning called for some MUSCLE to get me moving. This Kaimosi fills the bill: stout, sharp, and a little fruity undertone I had not noticed the first time I tried it. I still intend to try it with some milk, but to this point, I’ve needed the tea hit so fiercely each time I’ve steeped this, I haven’t stopped to dilute it!
Our new little gourmet store (imaginatively called Gourmet’s ;) is an allowance trap baited with gadgets and gimcracks and candles and spice mixes and—-what I can’t pass by without stopping—a small but intriguing selection of bulk teas. At $1.39 to, oh, around $2.99 an ounce…one little bag can’t hurt!
This smelled yummy in the jar and came home with me. The dominating flavors are chamomile and vanilla, very sweet without that coating your tongue. (Didn’t pay very close attention to the ingredient list, but I think it is sans licorice, which is all right by me.)
It’s very similar to the Sleepytime Vanilla I brought home recently and enjoyed immensely, just lighter on the mint.