Tag Archives: Tea

Sri Lanka

Beautifully shot video about the tea industry in Sri Lanka that I’ve just stumbled upon.

[Sorry, can’t embed it, but go here to watch!]

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The beautiful outdoors

One of my favourite spots to take tea is a small cafe on the Swedish coast. Tables are outside a small summer house, hidden amongst small outcrops in the rock face. Once you’ve navigated (the occasionally treacherous) path down, carefully balancing your tray of tea and goodies, you can escape the rest of the world, stare out to sea and watch swans in the foreground and the boats navigating by lighthouse in the distance.

Where do you like to take tea?

TomA

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Post Bank Holiday Tea Tasting – Fairtrade Green Tea Chai

And finally, we come to the end of a marathon tea tasting session. My last tea is a fairtrade green tea chai. Its good. Very good. There’s something endlessly comforting about chai; this particular chai is less spicy than many and rather lighter, perfect for a Sunday afternoon cuppa.

Do you know of other tea selections we should taste en masse? Are you a tea distributor or enthusiast? Please make suggestions of teas I should hunt out and taste in the comments below.

TomA

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Bank Holiday Tea Tasting – Fairtrade English Breakfast

Breakfast teas for breakfast time. A good strong cuppa with a healthy splash of milk is about the only way I can start a day properly. This Fairtrade English Breakfast is a touch fruitier, or maybe spicier, than my usual English Breakfast brew (currently the staple is Twinnings Organic English Breakfast), so it feels like a little bit of a treat. A bad English Breakfast tea can be a total non event, a good one should be rich yet subtle. This seems to perfectly fit the sunny-Monday-morning-and-I’m-not-at-work criteria, full of verve and excitement. A really rather good brew.

All these teas are individually bagged Four O’Clock branded teas, produced by Transherb. I’ve not come across these in Europe other than a single cafe in south east Sweden; they’re based in Quebec and have a rather tempting range of teas. Rather looking forward to getting through the next 7 cups…

TomA

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Sharky Tea Infuser

Miss Believer’s post about the tea submarine below reminded me of something I stumbled upon a while ago. Another piece of design that is intended to prompt a smile while you’re brewing your tea, this is a simple (as the best designs frequently appear to be) infuser that will float in your cup. With a sharks fin! Yay!

The designer is Argentinian Pablo Matteoda; here’s what he has to say about it:

INFUSION means to extract certain properties from an soluble ingredient such as tea leaves , herbs or fruit by soaking in liquid (water) until it gets saturated. So we can say that a infuser is the in charged of make this happen. This is a ludic point of view about the color given off from the phenomenon, wich makes more interesting the waiting of the whole process.

I’m not convinced by the rather orange substance seeping from the shark, it must be said, but a hungry shark doesn’t tend to leave behind  trail of rich Assam colouring…

Have you come across any fun pieces of tea related design recently? Or a really innovative way to brew a cuppa? If so, let us know in the comments!

TomA

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Attic (Bristol)


We had snow overnight in Bristol. While it wasn’t the 40cm the Met Office was panicking about, it was sufficient to prevent me being able to drive to work; with the trains and buses not running either, there was nothing for it but to stay in Bristol. Which gave me the perfect opportunity to get to Attic, a Bristol tea house I’ve been meaning to go explore for some time.

It is a cosy little shop, that today resembled more of an alpine cafe given the number of parents and children all kitted up in the snow gear for a day of sledging, snowball fights and snowman building. Nevertheless, Anne, the proprietor, was an absolute delight finding time between making endless hot chocolates to fill me in on the store and their teas.

Attic have a cracking selection of teas sourced  directly from China via a friend of Anne’s there. Which means big leafy tea and big flavoursome teas. Being Chinese the teas weren’t blended but typically pure, which means there was no house blend to go for (my usual tactic) and something I had half an eye on with a view to sourcing another tea for the blind tea tasting. So rather than be dull and have a black tea, I plumped for a White “Silver Needles” tea, one of their best sellers.

The brewing experience is a fun one too. You’re given an egg (tea?) timer to count down the three minutes until your tea has brewed. And this is the best bit: you pour the tea pot out of its bottom, so to speak, by holding it onto the top of the cup and let the tea gush down. I found it strangely satisfying.

The problem I generally have with non-black teas (by which I mean green, herbal and fruit teas) is that while they often smell fantastic, they frequently taste of not a lot, or worse, slightly suddy dishwater. I admit, that’s probably more my palette, but bear with me. However, this was a marvellous tea – while light as expected, it was also pleasantly sweet with a reassuring tea-ish taste. A subtle hint of, um, an undertone of, well, and a definite light after taste on the tongue that reminds me of…. er… Well, Oz Clarke I am not; but it was lovely. So that will have to do you for now! For being a “serious” tea place with “serious” tea, you can’t go wrong. [I apologise for the shocking photos! Misty lenses due to the icy cold outside and the steamy warmth inside!]

Attic, 115 Coldharbour Road, Redland, Bristol, UK
Their website has details of their online shop, as well as twitter, facebook and blog. Go look.

TomA

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