Tuesday, April 20, 2010

That Creamy Assam

Angels all around us.

You can tell it is definatively Spring - the "road work ahead " signs are popping up all over. Miles of one lane roads, with nary a worker to be seen. Sigh. A happier indication is our peach trees are in bloom. Yumm.

I got a bunch of tea samples today that I had ordered before my ban on tea until after we move. They are from the Assam Tea Companywww.assamteacompany.us. I don't remember where I heard about them. Of course, I had to try one right away. Assam has not really come into it's own in the tea world. Most people consider it pretty ordinary. I have to say it is not real high on my list of favorites, but it is almost always a good reliable standby, and less expensive than many.

I am trying their Satrupa Tea Estate Cream of Assam. One of the things I already like is they tell you which estate, which style of leaf [FTGFOP CL] - smallest black leaf, and give you the time of year and the batch number of the picking/processing. The Assam Tea Company says they are in the “shadow of the eastern Himalayas", but I doubt their elevation is too high, as Assamica tea plants are not very hardy.

This tea is a lovely black with lots of golden tips and smells like very good tobacco. I followed the instructions of 1 teaspoon, boiling water, no more than 3 minutes. They caution you not to exceed the 3 minutes, which I appreciate. The brewing tea smells toasty and nutty, maybe a little fruity. It brews up to a beautiful orange amber and it tastes very thick and smooth, almost as though it were made with cream or milk, with nuts and fruit and a little bite in the back of your mouth. It takes a bit of milk or cream very well, but I'm not sure you'd want to, as it is quite nice on it's own. You'll have to judge for yourself about sugar, as I hate it in my tea. I think it is much smoother than many Assams, well worth trying.


Veri-Tea said...

Sounds delicious Marlena!

Alex Zorach said...

I did not know of this tea company until this post, so thank you!

Upton Tea Imports, which I frequently order from (in part due to their selling all teas in a sample size, and also that I've had good experiences with both price and quality) has a huge selection of single-estate Assam teas, with a huge range of prices too. I haven't tried many of them because I have tended to not like Assam as much as other black teas (Darjeeling, various Chinese teas, even Kenyan teas). But perhaps I just need to try more Assams?

Marlena said...

I have gone through a lot of Upton's Assams, but not very recently. This was a new company to me, so I ordered about 8 samples. They are 1 ounce size, so you can do several pots owrth if you like them. They've not been high on my list, but these were appealing. Lots more to go.