by Little Yellow Teapot (a tea steeping marvel and occasional contributing author to this e-zine)
Our tea party featuring the new line of products from the experts in bringing you fine teas from China, Taiwan, and beyond continues with these four special flavored teas and herbals. While my humans and I had abandoned dealing with flavored items like this, we consented to try some that one of our fave tea vendors has recently added to his product line. We may have to rethink our position on those flavored items based on the results of Round 1 and this round.
D – Chai Lover’s Delight – The spiced tea that we know as simply “chai” here in the U.S. has many variations, and this one is sure to delight. My humans certainly consider this the epitome of the classic “masala chai” (spiced tea or, as we call it in the U.S., simply “chai”). Being real fans of Indian cuisine, they are in a position to assess the authenticity and have put their stamp of approval on this one for sure. They wanted you to see the tea without milk first, but it is best served as the chawallahs in India do, that is, with lots of milk and sugar/sweetener. That’s how they enjoyed it. Steep Western style using boiling water and infusing for 3-5 minutes, or use the more traditional stovetop method described on the vendor’s site.
E – Taj Mahal Chai – An icon of one of the top tea growing countries, the Taj Mahal in India is regarded as one of the wonders of the world. It is basically a large tomb for a beloved wife. This version of that spiced tea we know as “chai” is just as iconic and just as wonderful. When popping open that tea tin, you get a wondrous hit of ginger aroma. When steeped (boiling water, 3-5 minutes) you get more of the cinnamon flavor along with the cardamom. Adding milk and sweetener smoothes everything. A perfect cuppa for your moment of tea or even with meals. My humans like it with breakfast. Steep Western style using boiling water and infusing for 3-5 minutes, or use the more traditional stovetop method described on the vendor’s site.
F – China Chai – While lots of green tea comes from other countries, China remains a top source, so this green tea based “chai” has that impression of China in every sip. This is the sister version of Caravan Chai (with a black tea base, more traditional). Being based on green tea, it does not do well with milk added (although some of you might try it just for giggles). It’s also for you humans who are more of the green tea fans. My humans prefer the more traditional style (such as Taj Mahal Chai above).
G – Warming Cup Spiced Herbal – Warms you without caffeine and provides a soothing cup at bedtime. This one is definitely not one that suits my humans’ preferences, being overly perfumy and floral. It’s all a matter of individual taste. Being caffeine-free, though, can make this a great way to relax. We’ll leave it up to you readers to decide.
Wow, that was quite a tea party. Hope you enjoyed being part of it (sorta). More great tea times ahead. The Tea Gang and I will be diving into to more of those new products from JAS-eTea, some of their classic ones, plus a bunch of samples from some other great tea vendors out there. What a smorgasbord, as you humans say. TOOOOOT!
Disclaimer: all items were furnished by the vendor but all opinions expressed here are totally unbiased.
© 2014 A.C. Cargill photos and text