Saturday, October 29, 2011

Oooh, Oolong

Another view from Grandpa's porch
I just got my latest issue of "Tea Time" magazine, with its reminder of Thanksgiving, Hanukkah and Christmas to come.  Not to mention Kwanzaa and many other holidays in the next 2 months.  The one thing that struck me was their mention of Harney and Sons carrying Kosher teas.  I don't know what one must do to make tea Kosher, do you?  If so, please tell me.

Harney & Sons just happens to be the purveyor of today's tea, Da Hong Pao, an Oolong from Wuyi, China.  It is part of the Steepster Select group for October.  (I haven't reported on September's batch, as I got behind due to the flood and my eye.)  The heavily twisted dark brown to black leaves smell like one of the "heavier" wine barrels, maybe a dark sherry, but there is that somewhat characteristic orchid aroma around the edges.  Following directions, I brewed it for 4 minutes with boiling water.  Unusual, I know.  The resulting liquor is quite a light brown and guess what - smells like orchids, with a charred aged whiskey/wine barrel kick to it.  The Harney site says it has been oxidized about 40%.  It tastes just fine; soft, smooth, with the orchid and roasty/toasty flavors mingling just right.  Tastes like "more". This particular selection comes from the "3 famous trees" of Chinese legend.  Which I don't know, but will try to find out.

This month has also been Breast Cancer Awareness month and Harney's has tea for it. Jane's Garden Tea, is a blend of roses and green tea.  Some of the cost for each order of this tea goes to a fund they established as a memorial to Jane Lloyd, who worked for them before her untimely death from cancer.  The Boston Tea Company also has a Tea Leaves For Life sampler , part of which proceeds go for cancer research.

It's always nice to be able to get more than your money's worth, isn't it?

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