Oh happy day! I went to one of my favorite shops here in the village and what to my wondering eyes did appear? No, no, not reindeer, but Loose tea! Glass teapots! Flowering Teas! The Cheese Shop has always has a nice selection of quality herbal teas and excellent coffees, but now, they have the good stuff! She gets her teas from Teas etc., but it is packaged under her own label. Now, if I only had more money...
Well, I do need some Assam.
I went to another grocery store this weekend and, of course, checked out the tea aisle. It was huge! So many brands to choose from and so many kinds within brands. Even some loose leaf; four from the British Isles, Bewley's, Twinings, PG Tips and Typhoo. In the past 2 months that is three largish grocery stores in not very big cities - Binghamton [area], Albany and Cortland, NY. A year ago that was certainly not the case. I hope this does not go the way of many fads but that people can move from better grocery store tea to the even better world of good [quality, specialty, premier, rare, estate, pick your word] loose leaf tea.
Today's tea is not a tea, but is often classified with them. It is Yerba Mate, pronounce Yur-bah Mah-tay. Mine is Mate Decadence from the Good Leaf in Albany, NY. It has chocolate and caramel in it and is roasted, which I prefer - you can also get it green. You brew it as you do black tea, 1 teas. 212 for 5-10 minutes. It doesn't get bitter if you overbrew it. This one is particularly nice, with the chocolate in it. Just a warm cozy cup with a bit of caffeine - just enough to give you a boost. I have no idea how to describe the flavor of Mate. It is a little different but not something weird. Generally, if you like tea, you should like Mate and with some chocolate, definitely nothing to lose!