I was born and raised in New York City, but spent enough time in India to consider both places my home. That’s one thing you should know about me. Another thing you should know about me is that mango is one of my favourite things on this planet.
So. When I was little, we used to go to India a lot during the winter, because Mum and I always had long winter holidays (she was a teacher). One year, we decided to go during the summer for whatever reason, and that was one of the most memorable visits of my life. I had never experienced a proper monsoon season before, and it was incredible! Okay, yes, it was a tad inconvenient that your clothes are never dry, no matter what, for two months; the constant dampness can feel a little icky. But the way the rain transforms the landscape, wow, it’s just beautiful. I really wanted to take some video (I was obsessed with my camcorder around that time), but there was no way for me to keep it dry, so I just have my memories.
Anyway. My uncle was really thrilled that we were there during the summer. Do you know, he exclaimed, that we have over 40 varieties of mango? And I’m going to get them for you. And he took his shopping bag and marched out of the house. He didn’t exactly return with 40 varieties, but he did find quite a few during his short expedition around our Bombay neighbourhood. There were little ones that you eat regularly, there were fibrous ones and non-fibrous ones, and there were even huge ones the size of a papaya that were so juicy that you consumed them by sticking in a straw and simply squishing the mango as you drank. And I’m sure you can guess what happened next. Yes, exactly: I ate them all.
The next morning, I was brushing my teeth and I glanced up at the mirror. I’m not given to surprised exclamations, and wasn’t even at that age, so first my eyes got wide as saucers, and then I burst out laughing, and then I ran off to find my mum. You see, I was orange. It wasn’t until years later that I learned about the science behind that in school; at the time, I was just thrilled that I was orange all over. My uncle, who has the deepest dimples you’ve ever seen and laughs like Ernie from Sesame Street, burst into his typical khee-khee-khee-khee laughter when he saw me, which only set me off again. Mum, mind you, was less than amused, and wouldn’t let me eat any more mangos.
Thus endeth my best mango story. Now I reckon we should talk about this tea, eh? =)
Monosyllabic summary: Wow.
Somehow, Butiki Teas have made a vegan rooibos blend smell and taste like mango lassi. As far as I’m concerned, Stacy is some sort of magician. The fragrance and flavour are spot-on, not just for the mango flavour, but for mango lassi. There is no chemical note to the mango, it smells and tastes like either the fruit or a candy (sometimes like one, sometimes like the other), but natural in both cases. I don’t have any complaints about this one. The only thing I want to try next time is adding a bit of milk to bring out that creaminess even more.
I only have an ounce of this, so it must have been a freebie with one of my orders, during one of Butiki Teas’ “free ounce of your choice” promotions. I must reorder it so I can guzzle this without guilt, and with the reassurance that there’s more in the cupboard.
Tea amount: 1.5 tsp/~7g
Water amount: 6oz/~175mL
Additives: 1 tsp/~4.75g Demerara sugar
Mum, by the way, liked the tea, but neither smelled nor tasted mango lassi. Considering she has sharp senses while I often feel like mine are quite dull, I don’t understand how that’s possible, but there y’go. So in spite of my enthusiasm and conviction, I have to add that your mileage may vary.