Sunday, January 25, 2009

It's my Cuppa Tea!



January is hot tea month, I don’t know who decides these things, but I’m glad that someone thought of it.
http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art60425.asp
http://www.gracioushospitality.com/2009/01/january-national-hot-tea-month.html

My tea drinking practice evolved over time from drinking any kind of tea facsimile, to becoming more discriminating in my taste. I imagine myself to be somewhat of a tea connoisseur, with still so much more to learn.

As a child, my parents actually boiled loose tea leaves (Blue Ribbon) in a pot over an open campfire (similar to the picture here). The slightly smoky flavor gave the tea character, occasionally I would have a sip of someone’s tea. But it was not until years later that I began to consume tea as my beverage of choice.

I drink different types of tea over the course of the day. I begin my

day with Matcha tea, a Japanese ceremonial powdered tea. The preparation of the tea helps me begin my meditation. I mindfully whisk the powder in a small ceramic bowl. I pay close attention as the tea becomes frothy and a rich green color. I breathe in and I breathe out, I am present. I sit quietly and drink my bowl of tea. Now I am ready to continue my meditation and my day in perfect balance.

Later in the morning I enjoy a cup of chai, an Indian spiced tea with almond milk and a dusting of cinnamon. There are a number of different chai blends; my favorite is the chocolate, truffle to be exact.

In the mid afternoon, I enjoy my favorite green tea, Genmai. I particularly enjoy sipping this tea while I read. Finally, I like to end my day with a cup of chai roosibos, which also comes in a variety of blends to suit any taste.

The best advice for buying loose tea I can give, is to smell and inspect the leaves. The stronger the fragrance the fresher the tea, color and texture can also be a good indication of freshness.

The links below are some of my favorite places to purchase teas…

http://www.teaontheweb.com/
http://www.japanesegreenteaonline.com/organicgreentea.htm
http://www.granvilletea.com
http://steepstea.com

Notice your surroundings because you never know when the road you take will lead you to the perfect tea store. We unexpectedly came across this tea shop near Melbourne, Australia December 2009. We were stopped to consult a map, and I noticed across the street this tea shop. It has over 300 types of tea and tea accessories.

Go on, make yourself a pot of tea. The pleasure is in every cup, it is refreshing, relaxing, soothing and good for your emotional and physical health. Don't know what type of tea to drink, well read this.

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