A detail of yesterday's altar.
I've not been tasting any teas this week, as I had some sort of bug, which left me with no brain and no palate. But I think I am back to as normal as I ever am. Also, I am finding it difficult to get too excited about Spring when it keeps snowing. We had some yesterday and we're due to have more tonight. I can say that most of last week's foot of snow is gone and the birds are singing from early morning until after sundown. Perhaps I should pay attention to them! I did notice that our lupines are raising tiny fans of new leaves above the ground and the bee balm seedlings are beginning to look as though they will survive.
Very much on the positive side, last week I received samples I had ordered from 3 more companies: Samovar Life, Tea Trekker and the Bamboo Tea House. Most of them are black, since my husband is really not a fan of greens and Oolongs.
I am trying Samovar's Lychee Black today. http://www.samovarlife.com/ I don't think I have ever had lychee flavored tea. The small leaves are quite dark and have a fruity, sort of citrussy aroma. The instructions on my sample say to brew the contents of the packet in 16 ounces of water for 2-5 minutes. I did 3.5, in an 18 ounce pot. As it brewed, it gave off a strong scent I didn't recognize - probably the lychee. I can only describe it as sharp. The tea is a very very dark amber and quite heavy tasting, nearly tannic, nothing like the light body, smooth, rosy, honey tasting brew the site describes. I found it nearly undrinkable, it was so strong. You know I like strong tea, but this was just awful.
Okay, a lot of the fault was mine, for following directions, instead of using common sense. The packet really contained enough for about a 5-6 cup pot. so I warn you - use your sense of how much tea is enough for your pot. I am going to write the company and tell them they need to do something about their directions, as all of their samples carry the same ones. I am going to try another one tomorrow and do what I feel is best. So stay tuned.