Belch. American Lipton was my first introduction to tea. It is hideous. The British mother of my sister’s boyfriend introduced me to proper tea. Her sister sent tea to Minnesota and Mrs. B brewed it correctly. I was smitten. Unfortunately, her son broke my sister’s heart and I was stuck with Lipton. During college in the Twin Cities I discovered a store that sold imported tea and my taste-buds rejoiced.
A few years ago my fellow tea-connoisseur, Allie, took me to Mrs. Kelly’s Tea Tasting extravaganza. The event is a tea-enthusiast delight to sample their extensive selection. Mrs. Kelly’s opens their spartan warehouse; provides hot water, and bistro tables. I have attended on several occasions and it is becoming more popular every year. I gathered a bunch of samples to sip at home since its rather crowded and loud. Mrs. Kelly’s Tea sells its creations on-line and opens its Minneapolis warehouse once per month. www.mrskellystea.com
Reviews of their flavors:
Russian Smoky is extremely robust, complexly flavored, and my favorite tea. The best way to brew extra-strong tea is to dump hot water on the tea and then pour it off immediately (first wash). Then, gently pour hot water on the leaves and let it steep. The resulting essence is fantastic. You can discard the first wash or else douse it with a lot of sugar, milk and/or mint.
Jasmine Pearl is an exquisite green tea. There is neither bitterness nor grassiness in its flavor. The tone is gentle and calming. The best green tea that I have ever experienced.
China Rose smells like my aunt’s favorite hand lotion but tastes scrumptious. It brightens the palate and would be fabulous with dessert.
Darjeeling Organic is smooth and mellow. A tiny touch of sweetener helps a bit.
French Vanilla with milk is like drinking delicious warm ice-cream.
Strawberry Swirl is disappointing. The strawberry flavor is weak and swirl is rather bland.
More reviews to come, as I taste them! I hope Mrs. Kelly’s Tea adds a spring Tea Party event, which could be expanded to the parking lot with tents and feature speakers. I’d love to learn how to make tea-liqueur.
Tea is served.
© 2012 Ima B. Musing