Sunday, June 27, 2010


A brand new house in Switzerland. You can tell because the wood is so light.
By the end of yesterday, I really needed a cup of tea, so I brewed up some of Simpson and Vail's Bolivian Black, Large Leaf. I had forgotten how very nice it is, strong, floral, astringent. I was so glad I had it. And it makes a refreshing ice tea as well, which I had for lunch today. I reviewed this more fully on Nov 29, 2009.

Today I decided to try 2 teas using the cold brew method. The first is Teas Etc. Orange U Slim, a dark Chinese Oolong with pieces of orange and orange essence. The dark I assume refers to the Oolong being one that has oxidized quite a bit. Oolongs vary in oxidation from about 10% to 80%. This one definitely appears to be on the upper end of the scale. The two times I have tried it it has not been a winner, so this is absolutely it or into the mulch pile for sure.

The second is one of my favorites, Hu Kwa, a Lapsang Souchong from Mark T. Wendell. That means it is a smoked tea, getting much of its flavor from the smoke of smoldering pine branches. People either generally hate it or love it. I am in the latter category. To date, it is the best one I have had. I have not heard of anyone trying this as an ice tea, but I thought, why not? If you had this as ice tea, please tell me about it in the comments.

Well, the great experiment was a total bomb. Orange U Slim was its usual tasteless self and the Hu Kwa was just plain awful. Mulch pile for the first and back to hot tea status for the second.

I am in no way connected with the PUR water filter people, but I have to say I like their newest on- faucet-filter. It goes on easily, although you may need to use 2 washers to make the connection solid, it swivels back under the faucet so it is out of the way and it makes a big difference in the taste of your water. I found that for my amount of use – two pots of tea a day, pot of coffee for Himself, a filter lasts about 4 months. They are available at most big box hardware stores, as are the filters. Go for the slightly more expensive ones – the cheapies are just that – cheap.

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