Tea Snobbery

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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby uncivlengr » Fri Mar 05, 2010 9:16 pm UTC

podbaydoor wrote:Physics question: there's nothing more than I dislike than a cup or mug of cold tea.* The problem is, I tend to sip tea while I'm doing homework or other things, so it gets consumed slowly...and by the end, the tea's all cold. And I can't just keep on microwaving it indefinitely. What do you guys do to keep your tea warm?

*Disregarding iced tea or other variants

Should look for a mug warmer, as long as you're staying one place.

I 'm hesitant to get one for myself, though - I don't know just how hot they get, and I'd undoubtedly forget to turn it off, slide some papers over it and potentially catch the office on fire.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Rinsaikeru » Fri Mar 05, 2010 9:17 pm UTC

When a knitted/quilted bit of fabric will do instead of a hunk of plastic and electronics--I'm all for it.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Kizyr » Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:15 pm UTC

The container matters. If you're going to be sipping slowly, get a thermos/mug that's designed for that. Sometimes when I have an hour-long drive in the morning, I take a thermos of coffee with me (holds about 24 oz.) that keeps it warm for at least 45 minutes.

I'd go with that over something that needs to be plugged in. KF
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Bakemaster » Fri Mar 05, 2010 11:47 pm UTC

uncivlengr wrote:I 'm hesitant to get one for myself, though - I don't know just how hot they get, and I'd undoubtedly forget to turn it off, slide some papers over it and potentially catch the office on fire.

They don't get that much hotter than the temperature of a hot beverage. Not nearly hot enough to catch anything on fire. I got one for my mother in-law so she would stop forgetting her coffee mugs in the microwave. Works great (for both our purposes).
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby uncivlengr » Fri Mar 05, 2010 11:51 pm UTC

Rinsaikeru wrote:When a knitted/quilted bit of fabric will do instead of a hunk of plastic and electronics--I'm all for it.
Depends, the teacozy "forever" is a bit different than the mug warmer "forever" - in my case, just warming up the pot and mug with hot water before adding the tea is sufficent.

Another option would be to make it in a teapot but only pour half a cup at a time - keeping the tea in the pot will let it retain its heat better than it does sitting open in a mug.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby levicc00123 » Sat Mar 06, 2010 9:46 pm UTC

Okay, I ordered black tea sampler from http://www.adagio.com and should get it in my hands by Tuesday. When ordering tea online, how much should I order for someone who drinks a lot of tea?
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Decker » Tue Mar 09, 2010 2:44 pm UTC

levicc00123 wrote:Okay, I ordered black tea sampler from http://www.adagio.com and should get it in my hands by Tuesday. When ordering tea online, how much should I order for someone who drinks a lot of tea?

I would say order a lot of tea.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby MadParrot » Sun Mar 14, 2010 3:54 am UTC

mmmm, been raised a coffee drinker, but trying to aquire a taste for tea. So when I run out of milk (not a black coffee fan) there's still something to drink, or a good lesser caffinated break time for late nights of uni work. :)

So many pretty varieties though. (And the glass pot and flowering tea looks like plain fun) First I tried a berry pseudo-tea, makes the kitchen smell pretty, but I think I prefer bog standard. I have it black with no sugar, but I get halfway through and it starts tasting strangely sweet or dry or something. The tea snobs have any recommendations for training-wheel tea?
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Nath » Sun Mar 14, 2010 3:58 am UTC

MadParrot wrote:mmmm, been raised a coffee drinker, but trying to aquire a taste for tea. So when I run out of milk (not a black coffee fan) there's still something to drink, or a good lesser caffinated break time for late nights of uni work. :)

So many pretty varieties though. (And the glass pot and flowering tea looks like plain fun) First I tried a berry pseudo-tea, makes the kitchen smell pretty, but I think I prefer bog standard. I have it black with no sugar, but I get halfway through and it starts tasting strangely sweet or dry or something. The tea snobs have any recommendations for training-wheel tea?

For drinking without milk, Darjeeling works pretty well. Keep brewing time short, though, or it gets astringent as hell.

Or just get some good coffee that doesn't need milk to make it palatable :).
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Lidwiz » Sun Mar 14, 2010 7:25 am UTC

Irish Breakfast is good black as well. Don't brew it for more than four minutes, though.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Rinsaikeru » Sun Mar 14, 2010 2:54 pm UTC

Yeah pretty much any tea that gets steeped too long gets murky or bitter or just plain awful. Most black teas are in the 3-4 minute range, but if specific steeping directions are printed on the packaging, do your best to follow them.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby MadParrot » Tue Mar 16, 2010 10:59 am UTC

ah astringent, that's what it is. Thanks. Perhaps I've been letting it sit too long. Might have to start some experimentation next time...
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Kizyr » Sun Mar 21, 2010 7:04 pm UTC

Nath wrote:For drinking without milk, Darjeeling works pretty well. Keep brewing time short, though, or it gets astringent as hell.

I'm fond of Ceylon and Yunnan Gold for drinking without milk as well. Still need sugar (personally) though. KF
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Oolong » Thu Apr 01, 2010 4:03 pm UTC

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Hello! I have quite a lot of tea (the tea tea is annotated if you follow the Flickr link).

I'm not much of a tea snob - there's a place for builder's tea and what-have-you, and I actually find myself drinking more English tea than any other tea, lately - but I am offended by almost all green tea in teabags, and the whole idea of Lipton's.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby lu6cifer » Mon Apr 19, 2010 11:26 pm UTC

I, too am a tea snob

I drink mostly green tea (tie guan yin), and mostly loose leaves, because my dad's the one who brews it. Otherwise, I just drink bagged tea. There was this one brand--English Covent--that I really liked, but I don't think you can get them anymore.

Also, I find Bigelow tea to be a bit weird tasting, and I'm also not a fan of Japanese Green Tea


Regarding brewing, has anyone heard of the custom of pouring out the first batch in order to wash the leaves?
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Kizyr » Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:00 am UTC

lu6cifer wrote:Regarding brewing, has anyone heard of the custom of pouring out the first batch in order to wash the leaves?

Yes, but I've really only found it applicable to specific teas. I'll do that with loose-leaf green tea (with only a few tablespoons of cold water) and oolong (with a half-cup of hot water). I've never seen that done with black tea. KF
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Bakemaster » Tue Apr 20, 2010 3:45 am UTC

We got some Lapacho from the tea shop. It's interesting, although it has a vanilla flavoring added that I don't know if I like or not. I also tried what I'm pretty sure was the same stuff at a table at the weekend's Earth Day celebration, but the woman there called it something different. She said it was a mix of ingredients, primarily a bark from the Amazon rainforest, and that sounds like the stuff, and it had a similar taste. She had some straight and some mixed with yerba mate. I preferred it with the mate.

We've also had some Honeybush for a while now (since our wedding) that I don't know if Sarah posted about. It's really good, and not caffeinated so it's good for evenings.

Sarah sent me a news article today that claimed drinking real tea greatly reduced risk of ovarian cancer in some study. More and more good news about tea every day... Guess I should develop a habit.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Nath » Tue Apr 20, 2010 6:23 am UTC

Bakemaster wrote:Sarah sent me a news article today that claimed drinking real tea greatly reduced risk of ovarian cancer in some study. More and more good news about tea every day... Guess I should develop a habit.

Yeah, it'd be pretty alarming if you got ovarian cancer.

IIRC, many of the beneficial health effects of tea require drinking it without milk. This is annoying for me, what with my Assam-with-milk ways.

I'll ditto Kizyr on the throwing away the first batch thing. Many green teas can be brewed multiple times from the same leaves; this doesn't work so well for black tea. I think the logic of throwing away the first batch is to reduce the caffeine content, since conventional wisdom is that most of the caffeine is extracted early in the infusion. I don't know how true this is, though, and I treat this factoid with suspicion.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby TheSkyMovesSideways » Tue Apr 20, 2010 7:31 am UTC

Bakemaster wrote:We got some Lapacho from the tea shop. It's interesting, although it has a vanilla flavoring added that I don't know if I like or not.

I've tried plain (unflavoured) Lapacho. To me, it was to taste what goatse is to sight. :D

We've also had some Honeybush for a while now (since our wedding) that I don't know if Sarah posted about. It's really good, and not caffeinated so it's good for evenings.

Honeybush mixed with green rooibos (usually at a ratio of about 1:2 H:R) is a staple for me. Delicious.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby lu6cifer » Tue Apr 20, 2010 1:58 pm UTC

Nath wrote:I'll ditto Kizyr on the throwing away the first batch thing. Many green teas can be brewed multiple times from the same leaves; this doesn't work so well for black tea. I think the logic of throwing away the first batch is to reduce the caffeine content, since conventional wisdom is that most of the caffeine is extracted early in the infusion. I don't know how true this is, though, and I treat this factoid with suspicion.


Actually, I've heard that they spray all sorts of pesticides and stuff on the tea plants, which is why my parents pour out the first batch when they brew tea.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Kizyr » Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:18 pm UTC

TheSkyMovesSideways wrote:Honeybush mixed with green rooibos (usually at a ratio of about 1:2 H:R) is a staple for me. Delicious.

Green rooibos? How is that different from regular rooibos? KF
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Bakemaster » Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:27 pm UTC

I was about to ask the same question.

Regarding pesticides, it's pretty easy to find organic tea, which should make that somewhat less of an issue.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby TheSkyMovesSideways » Wed Apr 21, 2010 9:08 am UTC

The same way green tea differs from red/black tea, green rooibos differs from red rooibos - the latter is oxidised while the former is not. I've never really liked taste of the red rooibos I've tried, so I get the green stuff from SpecialTeas.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Kizyr » Thu Apr 22, 2010 1:50 am UTC

TheSkyMovesSideways wrote:The same way green tea differs from red/black tea, green rooibos differs from red rooibos - the latter is oxidised while the former is not. I've never really liked taste of the red rooibos I've tried, so I get the green stuff from SpecialTeas.

Interesting...
I'm going to have to try some. KF
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Chuff » Thu Apr 22, 2010 5:45 am UTC

Really strong black tea with nothing in it. Mmmmm.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby glitterbug12 » Thu Apr 22, 2010 2:30 pm UTC

I looove tea. I'm not picky at all, though, I'll drink pretty much anything. :)
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Sprocket » Mon Apr 26, 2010 5:09 pm UTC

PictureSarah wrote:I got my pretty glass teapot for Christmas! Along with a few different flavors of Numi's flowering tea blossoms. The tea leaves are sewn together in a little ball, and when you drop them into the hot water they blossom into a flower, like so.
41UqrpDEHZL._SS500_.jpg

I'm very excited to try the setup out. I may have to have a tea party.
I got some of these from you, they are really very tastey. the ones I'd had in the past were no good, these are bloody delicious, but the only thing I have to steep them in to appreciate them properly is a Pyrex measure cup.
Mr. Bakerstein wrote:Sarah sent me a news article today that claimed drinking real tea greatly reduced risk of ovarian cancer in some study. More and more good news about tea every day... Guess I should develop a habit.
On the other hand, caffeine is supposed to be bad for breast tissue, causing hardening of cysts. No one is saying anything one way or another about this leading to higher risk of cancer or anything, but it seems like a bad sign to me.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby zwei » Tue Apr 27, 2010 1:50 pm UTC

On the other hand, caffeine is supposed to be bad for breast tissue, causing hardening of cysts. No one is saying anything one way or another about this leading to higher risk of cancer or anything, but it seems like a bad sign to me.

i'm wondering... how much caffeine do you have to ingest on a daily basis for it to have a commensurable effect?

i just got a "spiced christmas tea leaf" tea as a random gift from a friend.... not sure if it's good, but i love spiced teas. (authentic indian masala chai is amazing).
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby darjeeling » Wed May 12, 2010 9:22 am UTC

If I could only choose one, it would have to be Darjeeling. Great at any time of day.

For tea lovers in London, The Tea House in Covent Garden is a great little place.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby levicc00123 » Thu May 13, 2010 6:44 pm UTC

I just got my order of 16oz of Earl Grey Bravo from adagio.com and it's delicious! You can see the bergamot in the leaves. Try it when you have the time.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Shro » Sat Jul 10, 2010 1:09 am UTC

Has anyone had any experience ordering from specialteas.com? I checked out their website, and they have what looks like a really nice selection. You also have the ability to order a 1/2 oz samples of lots of different types of teas for a dollar. I think the next time we get a craving for some new teas, we'll order from there. We have a lot of tea right now from teavana. Yeah, the place is overpriced, we know, but it was a nice introduction to some of the blended, herbal, and rooibos teas. They have some teas that are really really really good iced.

Man, I love iced tea.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby PictureSarah » Sat Jul 10, 2010 5:37 pm UTC

You live in a decently-sized city, right? You should just check out if you have a local tea shop. We have a little place here called Serenitea, and they have daily samples of an herbal and a black/green tea, and you can smell all of the teas (quiet a variety) that they keep in stock. That way you get to sample or at least sniff teas beforehand, you can get it without having to wait, and you support local business!
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby TheSkyMovesSideways » Mon Jul 12, 2010 8:13 am UTC

Shro wrote:Has anyone had any experience ordering from specialteas.com?

Highly recommended - They're where I get the vast majority of my tea. Much cheaper than any tea stores here in Australia, and I've never had any problems with them over perhaps a half dozen orders. (I have, however had problems with Australian customs freaking out over tea containing fruit, flowers, etc, then confiscating and destroying it).
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby rebecacor1 » Mon Jul 12, 2010 10:03 am UTC

I wouldn´t say I am an experto on tea but my day would not be right if I didn´t have "my tea". Actually I need my tea more than once a day and usually end up having at least 4 cups!! So tea starts my day off and also finishes my day.
I prefer black tea... Tetley or PG with an occasional Earl Grey for a change - no extravagant taste but according to English ritual: heat the pot, pour boiling water over the tea and let it seep for a few minutes before adding a touch of milk. Lovely! Nothing like a good cuppa tea!
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Shro » Wed Jul 21, 2010 3:46 pm UTC

PictureSarah wrote:You live in a decently-sized city, right? You should just check out if you have a local tea shop. We have a little place here called Serenitea, and they have daily samples of an herbal and a black/green tea, and you can smell all of the teas (quiet a variety) that they keep in stock. That way you get to sample or at least sniff teas beforehand, you can get it without having to wait, and you support local business!

Yeah, there is at least one tea place around here that sells looseleaf tea. It's by the farmer's market. You're right, it would be better getting things from a local place than ordering it online. I will make sure to check it out.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Rinsaikeru » Wed Jul 21, 2010 3:58 pm UTC

My favourite tea right now is Coconut Cream Chai--it's offered at a local tea place. It's a pretty basic chai with coconut added and it does have a nice creamy taste. Love this tea. Wanted to share. :D
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby ntietz » Thu Aug 12, 2010 3:56 am UTC

I just got a bunch of tea from Adagio: some hibiscus, an oolong sampler, a white sampler, a chai sampler, a rooibos sampler, and a Pu Ehr Dante sample! My mom also picked me up three Ten Ren oolongs when she was in San Francisco (Ti Kuan Yin, King's Grade 913, and Pearl Jasmine). Mmm, I have some delicious days coming up!

How do you all prepare white tea? I followed the instructions for the Snow Bud sample, but the high end of the time: 5 minutes at about 190° F. It turned out tasty, but it is almost completely clear. I know Snow Bud is supposed to be particularly light -- is it supposed to be this clear, though? I can't see really any color in it right now.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby dubsola » Tue Oct 19, 2010 9:30 am UTC

I had a cup of tea from Starbucks at JFK airport recently, and it was actually very, very good. I was pleasantly surprised.
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby Lady Freya » Tue Oct 19, 2010 10:38 pm UTC

I recently had an earl grey supreme from here:

http://www.charteas.com/

and I can honestly say that its the most delicious earl grey I've ever bought. I have no doubts about the quality of their teas and I'm so happy to find that they do mail order in the UK.

p.s. I hate Pu Erh
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Re: Tea Snobbery

Postby JudeMorrigan » Wed Oct 27, 2010 5:49 pm UTC

Curse you folks! I've been on a tea kick, and inspired by this thread, I made an adagio order. I picked up one of their ingenuiTea infuser gift combo, the black tea sampler, and the chai sampler. I'd forgotten how awesome real tea was. (I'd been working my way through my old, unused bagged tea before.) The darjeeling in the black tea sampler just had so much body.
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