14 September 2009

Tea Time

Life's been a little stressful lately, and for some reason, whenever things get hectic, all I can think of is settling into a comfortable chair on a soft, rainy afternoon, with a steaming cup of tea and a good book.  Sadly, there is little to no rain here in South Texas, and there never seems to be time to enjoy a book, so all I can do is share the joys of a nice cup of tea with you here:

I found a really fantastic set of brewing instructions over at Harney & Sons tea company, a personal favorite of mine:



Brewing Basics
Bring fresh filtered water to a full boil for black teas, herbals and some oolongs. Use less than boiling water for whites, greens, and some oolongs. Using a teaspoon, (the perfect tool for measuring tea) measure one level teaspoon of loose tea for each cup desired. Pour prepared water over tea, steep according to the brewing instructions below, and enjoy!

Bring fresh filtered water to a full boil for black teas, herbals and some oolongs. Use less than boiling water for whites, greens, and some oolongs. Using a teaspoon, (the perfect tool for measuring tea) measure one level teaspoon of loose tea for each cup desired. Pour prepared water over tea, steep according to the brewing instructions below, and enjoy! 




Water Temp

Steep Time

White Teas

180F

3-8 minutes

Green Teas

180F

1-3 minutes

Oolong Teas

180F-212F**

1-5 minutes**

Black Teas

212F

5 minutes

Herbals

212F
5 minutes

There are quite a few teas I want to try, if I ever get the time.  My favorite tea companies are Harney & Sons, Mighty Leaf and Zhena's Gypsy Fair Trade Organic.

From the afore mentioned Harney & Sons I would very much like to try the following teas:

Chinese Flower:

Green Tea with Flowers and Lemon A reinvigoration of the senses. Chinese Flower, flawlessly blended of hand plucked Chinese green tea, three types of flowers, and citrus flavors, yields the most high-caliber tea experience. A synergy between tea, flower, and fruit, every part gorgeously synchronized - crisp citrus aroma that bursts and floral notes that woo, Chinese Flower grasps the sensations. It is a rare jewel in the teascape, its bold vitality spellbinding.


Florence
Since we can't always be sipping hot cocoa while sitting in the Palazzo della Signoria, we can sip this decadent blend of chocolate and hazelnut and dream we are there.


Top Ti Quan Yin
This tea is from the birthplace of Ti Quan Yins. It is an intense mixture of butter and honey, reminiscent of great Burgundy white wine.


White Christmas
Recline in front of a glowing fire while the snow drifts, and the tree lights twinkle. A sip from this warm and nutty blend completes the perfect winter wonderland. Hand-picked white tea blended with almonds, vanilla and cardamom, accented by white chamomile flowers.

 
Sally's Secret is our celebration of life, love and fine tea. We present this aromatic blend in memory of our co-worker Sally, whose expert blending, steady friendship and love of all things pink we miss each day. Enjoy a cup of this lovely blend of our Earl Grey and pink rosebuds with a friend.

This beautiful blend of large leaf Ceylon and Keemun is scented with rose oil and rosebuds. The scent alone makes a tin of this tea memorable. The addition of pink rosebuds lends a romantic touch to this fine tea.
 


Dragon Pearl Jasmine
This is a masterpiece from Fuan, China. Beautiful little hand rolled pearls are gently infused with the floral essences from Jasmine flowers. The tea is a delight to look at and its brew also delivers. The light colored brew is full of floral and sweet aromas. Always a delight.

 
A blend created in honor of all Mothers. A great gift for Mother's Day or any time you think of Mom. Or perhaps you are hosting a Mother's Day Tea? This is the perfect choice. A beautiful blend of chamomile flowers, rosebuds, cornflowers and orange peel, infused with citrus flavor, which creates a surprisingly refreshing caffeine-free cup.

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I am a digital artist, and a writer. My primary artistic influences are the PreRaphaelites, Romantic Realists and the Impressionists.

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