Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Yunnan Rules!

The back of a Swiss choir stall.

Steepster, that very good "peer review" tea site, has added some new things, as well as updating their site. One of the newest is "Steepster Select". For $19 a month, you will be sent 3 different teas to taste and review or at least, enjoy, along with appropriate tasting notes and some information about tea. From some of the "tea of the month" offerings I've seen, this is quite inexpensive. Go to http://www.steepster.com/ to check it out. The initial offering only has 100 spots, so you might want to hurry. I signed up and I'll let you know all about it.

It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood. All the windows are open, the cats are running in and out, the sun is shining, back lighting the trees at the edge of the lawn. The chicory and golden rod are making a wonderful blue and yellow show, along with some milkweed and Joe Pye weed to add their pinks to the mix. In my garden, I am especially proud of my 7 inch yellow spider daylillies that look so good next to the maroon ones with yellow throats.

The tree people are here with their giant clawed machines, clearing away our 90 poor, dead and dying trees. My favorite tree is gone - it had a lovely configuration of branches. I'll miss it. I hope they take the one that is so cosily leaning against the sugar maple. Shade is a wonderful thing, welcome cooling in the summer's heat.

Have you noticed how many new tea books have been coming out? More than ten in the past year. Surely this is another indication that tea drinking is here to stay and on the upswing! Maybe even more civility in general life. We could all use some of that, and the time to slow down and appreciate the world around us, no matter how busy we are.

I just made German potato salad for our supper. it is from my friend Gerta, who would make 100 pounds of potatoes plus the other ingredients, for our church's strawberry festival. There was never any left. The recipe is for 5 pounds, but it is easily halved or doubled. If any of you want it, let me know, and I'll put it up here, it's easy and sooo good., but not for the super dieter.

Today I am having some more Upton's. It is ZY84, Yunnan Rare Grade. The sample is just enough for my 8 cup pot at 1.5 teaspoons at 212 degrees for 4-5 minutes. Oh my, the dry leaf smells so good, like a flowery, spicy meadow. There is a lot of gold dust from the abundance of fat yellow buds. The brewing aroma is spicy, with a honey twist to it and the tea in the cup - ambrosia! It is sweet, smooth, spicy, with a great hint of cocoa at the end. This is the best Yunnan I've had in a while and I will run right over to their site and buy me some more. Yunnan, as you may know, is one of my all time favorite teas and this one is super.

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