This tea sample didn’t have ingredients on it, so I took a moment to think about what a Shakespeare tea might taste like.
Probably gloomy, I thought. Murky and sad and full of suicide.
It’d taste like the rocks Ophelia put in her pockets, or the river she drowned in.
It’d taste like the blood that wouldn’t leave Lady Macbeth’s hands.
It’d taste like Skylock’s pound of flesh; shards from Yorick’s skull in Hamlet’s sweaty palms; or the steel and poison of Romeo and Juliet.
I took a sip.
This tea isn’t that Shakespeare. It’s the other Shakespeare. It’s comedy Shakespeare. It’s Much Ado About Nothing and Midsummer Night’s Dream Shakespeare.
That side of Shakespeare isn’t really my strong suit. I was a very depressive teen who preferred tragedy. I also think his moody works tend to be more famous.
This tea definitely tastes like a midsummer night’s dream might taste.
It’s a summer-orchard sort of flavor. Citrus and flowers, lots of lilac and roses. And some bergamot, I think. It’s very strong. I don’t drink a lot of flower-tea, so I can’t hop in there with a nuanced critique of how this compares to other flower teas. But if you want a punchy summer black tea, this is definitely one to try.
I would be very curious to see what this company would do with a gloomy Shakespeare tea. They could run both: the Tragedy and Comedy bundle. Put a happy mask on one and a sad mask on the other.
The complete difference between his two types of work is begging for further reflection. I could make a joke about how the two genres of plays were written by entirely different people — and maybe “Shakespeare,” as such, never existed — but there are already pages and pages of literary analysis about that by much smarter people than I am. Have fun researching it, if you’re into that sort of thing.
I’ll stick to writing about tea.
(Original Artwork Courtney of Super Starling!)
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Black
Possibly the most well-known name in western literature, William Shakespeare began his life as a tanner’s son in Stratford-Upon-Avon in the spring of 1564. After a seven year period following the birth of his children in which no reliable records of his life can be found, Shakespeare reappeared in London where he began writing and acting in plays. Initially, his name was relegated to the corners of playbills, but as his productions grew in popularity, theaters began using “written by William Shakespeare” as their main selling point. The plays and poems he produced during the thirty year period when he was writing have endured the test of time and are studied and read across the world. He pioneered many styles and structures that have set the foundations for some of western literature’s greatest achievements. Shakespeare is even credited with inventing over 1700 words in the English language.
Gardens, herbs, and flowers appear in many of Shakespeare’s plays and oftentimes play a critical role in his stories. Our William Shakespeare tea blend is a combination of a few of the many herbs he references: lavender, roses, rosemary. The wit and playfulness of his verse means that Shakespeare’s plays can still be enjoyed today, ideally with a warm cup of tea.
This black tea and floral blend brews to an amber cup with a sweet, floral taste. The slightly earthy and woody notes are rounded out with the citrus taste of bergamot and sweet rose petals.
Ingredients: Rose Congou black tea, lavender petals, rose petals, rosemary and bergamot oil.
Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!
"Hey, everybody! I'm Leah, a graphic designer from Pennsylvania, United States. I live with my husband and rescue mutt in a house with colorful walls. I love fonts, colors, animals, flowers, novels, illustration, geeking out, and -- obviously! -- tea. I've only been heavily into tea for about a year, but I've found I tend to prefer loose blended black dessert teas. I normally drink them hot western style without anything added; if I add in some vanilla almond milk or honey, I promise I'll mention it! When I'm not blogging here, I'm blogging at leahlucci.com/starling or posting to Instagram (super_starling), so come say hi!"
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