We are on Day six of this Holiday Countdown! With each day that passes, I get to sample a different tea – I hope you’re also enjoying a cup of awesomeness too!
For today’s holiday “inspiration”, I chose an ornament I made a few years ago for a 12 Days of Christmas Swap. I had a huge stash of these oval “paperboard” coasters (I still have a bunch of them somewhere) that I had bought to practice making Zentangles on and one day, I sat there and feeling uninspired by Zentangles but very inspired by paisleys (I love paisley), I decided to start decoupaging on the coasters instead. I first put down a layer of sheet music, (I may have layered it with newspaper too), and then I put a colorful paisley design napkin over that and after the glue was dry, I started painting in the paisley design with shimmering paint. I added a few rhinestones on it and then I put eyelets on the top and bottom and added the hanging ribbon and the fringe (which I made too). It was a fun project.
I think that going back through these pieces is starting to dust off the creativity again. (I hope!) In the meantime, let me tell you about the tea that Teanzo sent me for the sixth day in this Advent Calendar!
Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Teanzo 1856
With its muscatel finish, Darjeeling Tea is a pleasure to sip and savor. Grown in the picturesque tea gardens of the Himalayan Mountains, Darjeeling tea, also known as the “champagne” of teas is a highly sought after treasure from India. Darjeeling tea matures slowly at high altitude, producing the fine Darjeeling muscatel flavor exclusively found in this region.
Learn more about this tea here.
What a lovely tea to be sipping on this afternoon! I was very happy to see that Darjeeling was the tea for today!
This Darjeeling has a very pleasant and crisp flavor. It’s sweet and fruity. Muscatel! I taste that grape-y, wine-like note that starts off tasting a bit like black currant and then morphs into a stronger grape note. The finish is sweet and dry, but it’s not overly dry. It’s more like the light, dry sensation you might experience if you were drinking wine.
As I continue to sip, I pick up on notes of flower. Subtle and sweet, it is a different sweetness that I taste from the fruit notes and I like the dimension that these floral notes bring to the cup.
I also find that as I continue to sip, the body of this tea changes somewhat. It started out rather light, but as the tea cools – or as I sip? – not sure which! But as I continue my journey with this tea, I find that the body seems to develop somewhat and there is a more substantial texture to the tea now than when I first started sipping it.
What that suggests to me is that this tea would make a stunning iced tea. I don’t generally recommend a Darjeeling tea as an iced tea because I feel like most Darjeeling teas tend to lose *something* as the tea cools. The flavor is just not as spectacular when the tea is cold versus hot when it comes to Darjeeling teas. Most Darjeeling teas, that is! This one, however, this I would be happy to drink either hot or iced and I’m intrigued that the tea becomes something different as it becomes cool.
A lovely Darjeeling – I would recommend this one highly to those who are new to Darjeeling. It makes a nice starter Darjeeling because it’s nearly as astringent as some Darjeeling teas can be. I’d also recommend this to Darjeeling enthusiasts who are looking for the ideal iced Darjeeling!
Leaf Type: Herbal Tisane
Where to Buy: MarketSpice
A tangy yet fruity blend of herbs. This old time favorite tea contains Lemon Grass, Rosehips, Hibiscus, Peppermint, Orange Peel and Wild Cherry Bark. Caffeine free.
Learn more about this tea here.
Yet another tea that I held on to because the herbal content scared me a bit. Hibiscus! Yikes! Run for the hills!
But now that I’m finally tasting it, the hibiscus really isn’t a very strong flavor. It does offer a slight tangy note to the overall cup, as well as some texture and a pretty pinkish hue. However, the other herbs in this blend manage to keep the hibiscus in check, and keep it from getting too tart or syrupy. Of course, being diligent on the steep time is important too, I steeped this for six minutes using water at 195°F, and I really wouldn’t recommend steeping it any longer than that.
Really, despite all my trepidation, this really is quite a tasty tisane. Tangy, yes, but not overly so. It also has some sweet citrus-y notes that meld nicely with the tangy notes to give it a light sweet-tart kind of flavor that I find rather enjoyable as well as soothing. And the peppermint – which is another sometimes aggressive herb – manages to stay in check too. I like how the minty note really freshens up the cup, providing a crisp, cool note to contrast with the sweet and tangy flavors.
A nice herbal that both kids and adults can enjoy any time of day.