1983 Tasting Notes
A sipdown this morning. This has been a faithful, smooth, no-fuss breakfast standby. Recommended for Assam lovers who need a basic cupboard tea; too many packets and tins in the hopper for me to hunt this one down assiduously, but if a tin just happened to cross my path at TJ Maxx or a local grocery, it might have to come home with me again.
(I’m a little put out at our TJ Maxx…I realize it’s pot luck and overstocks there, but the tea selection that was giving me such great joy has dwindled down to nothing.)
This little jar of nuggety goodness was a gift; normally I don’t choose chai for myself.
However, it’s fun to play “Where’s Waldo?” with all the ingredients—cinnamon chunks, fennel, fennel and more fennel, black peppercorns…tried a few sips straight up and it was not too bitter as a stand-alone. However, the addition of half-and-half and some brown sugar smoothed it out beautifully. Available in bulk, this gets a Cheapster Steepster thumbs-up for frugality as well.
I don’t generally catch myself saying, “Self, you need to buy yourself some green tea.” (It’s usually, “Self, you need to spend more money than you need to on bundles and batches of black tea and caffeinate yourself into a coma.”) But if I told myself that, this would be on the short list. Precise balance of greeny and cereally; a second steep holds up nicely; even better when you’re drinking it from your Favorite Sunny Spot.
Overindulgent snack days at work call for something light and mildly medicinal at home. Straight up lemongrass, no additives, clean and mildly sweet to compensate for too many Lil’ Smokies in barbecue sauce and Chex Mix.
Like chamomile and peppermint—it’s pretty hard to distinguish any major variance in lemongrass flavoring, so my Cheapster Steepster recommendation is to buy it loose and inexpensively at the health food store instead of boxed, bagged, and branded.
Much-postponed Christmas swap with a friend today; she’d been Goodwilling and I am now in possession of a lovely heavy white ceramic dome-shaped pot and cups and saucers with delicate sage green leaves that make me feel like I’m handling spring. The pot is great—I love friends who understand the value of utilitarian vs. cutesie things that don’t hold heat and you can’t pour out of.
Anyway….also a selection of four of her fave teas to try in said pot; all from our favorite local bulk jars. The manufacturer description is very accurate. The dry leaves are redolent of cloves. (Redolent—isn’t that a nice, relaxing adjective? And one I didn’t have to make up, either.) The steeped color is rich and sultry amber. Flavor—-succulent. The orange is pithy, not painfully tart; deep, sweet cloves that warm your tummy but don’t bite your tongue.