Thursday, April 1, 2010

A Journey to Java, a Time for Silence and Celebration

Along the Rhine River in Germany, with a castle, of course.

The pussy willows have come out with those furry little catkins and there are a few forsythia beginning to bloom ! Hooray. My daffodils are about 6 inches tall and I can see the flower buds. Maybe 2 weeks and we'll have flowers. The iris I planted last fall have finally decided to poke through and the lavender has started to grow. So good to see growing things and smell the earth.

I have mostly been in a black tea mood of late and only great acts of will have enabled me to try other teas. Today I will continue with the dark side, as I found a bunch of Simpson and Vail black teas tucked away. Today's is from Java, which is part of the Indonesian island chain, from the Kertasarie Estate. The dry leaves are pretty small, black, with a few browns to liven it a bit. The dry smells like tea, with a scent of aged wood, kind of oaky, maybe. As it brews there is also a floral aroma, with a nutty and malty edge. It brews up to about a medium amber, which surprised me, as I expected it to be much darker. I really like the taste, but I can't quite pin it down. There is some nice astringency, the slightest hint of lemon and kind of an oaky wine finish to it, without being grapey in the least. It is like some Ceylons, but I think it is lighter and brighter, somehow, if that makes any sense to you. Any way, it is a very pleasant tea and one I would recommend.

On a less happy note, I just bought a bunch of Twinings Prince of Wales tea, the standard by which I measure all other Princes. I had a cup this morning and it tasted nothing like I expected! Oh woe. It may just be me, so I will have more, but I was sadly disconcerted. Especially since I bought 3 tins worth. You don't suppose my palate may have grown past it? That would be nice, but I'd hate to lose my Prince, even for sentiment's sake. I'll keep you posted.

I will not be writing again until the Monday after Easter, as I take time for silence, to remember the suffering of my Lord and to celebrate His day of Reurrection! Let the earth be glad and the heavens ring with praise and thanksgiving!


Steph said...

I hope the prince hasn't failed you!

Alex Zorach said...

I took a brief boat ride up and down the Rhine, and was happily surprised to find that it indeed is LOADED with's not just in stories and pictures but it's like that in real life too!

I too was a bit surprised when I tried Twinings' Prince of Wales tea. I tried it in teabags review.