Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Simply spoon the leaves into your infuser, add water to the brim of your pot , and allow to steep. When you have an infusion of the desired strength, simply pour your tea and enjoy. When it’s time to clean up, just remove the infuser from the pot (nested in the rim), empty into a bin, and rinse out. No tea leaves in your drink, no mess in your sink, just wonderful fresh tea. Bee House teapots are designed to be filled to the brim, and emptied when the 1st serving round is completed, so we suggest that you consider a smaller pot than you might normally use, to ensure that your leaves are not left in water to stew in your infuser.
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Sunday, November 8, 2009
At the suggestion of our new friends we've tweaked our list a little. There's a new sliding price structure that takes into account quantities purchased. And we've added two Super Traditional Tea Bags for convenience. Although in the past I've held forth about revolting tea bags, and many are, it is possible to match the blend to the bag and to the occasion. We reckon we've got it just right for our Breakfast Choice and Earl Grey Choice teas. We've used good quality teas, no rubbish, sweepings or bitter cheap teas.
For other selections for your shop we recommend the loose teas brewed in a traditional pot. One with a tea strainer in the spout is ideal, and there is no reason why one of our Super tea bags cannot also be brewed in this pot.
At the top end of our catering rage are Fine & Noble pyramid tea bag. The range is specially selected by tea experts using only the finest teas from the “old” tea-growing world. They are manufactured using the more traditional “orthodox” method rather than on the CTC machines more commonly used on today’s tea bags. The quality of these teas, combined with the free-flow nylon pyramid bag, result in a slow release of flavour and character . Many imitations now on the market. These are the real thing, filled with the finest teas.
I urge you to try these extraordinary products.
Friday, October 23, 2009
Monday, October 19, 2009
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Monday, August 31, 2009
Friday, August 21, 2009
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Monday, July 27, 2009
Sunday, July 26, 2009
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Friday, July 24, 2009
Our current favourite Estates, in alphabetical order are Badamtan, Castleton, Gopaldhra, Makaibari, Margaret's Hope, Okayti, Puttabong, Rohini, Tumsong. These are to be found over all the flushes, including Mid-Season and Autumnal.
Our choice for the First Flush 2009, is Giddapahar, a super greenish tea with lots of grassy flavour.
The Flushes (Harvests)
1st Flush is harvested in mid-March following spring rains, and has a gentle, very light colour, aroma, and mild astringency.
2nd Flush: The production of the world renowned “summer tea” is produced from the month of May. The Second Flush results from the luscious, moist and juicy leaves characterized by very enticing facade with a turquoise, purplish bloom and a touch of shimmering shiny apex (buds). The infused leaves are more vivid in its colour and appearance than that of spring. It is characterized by mature and a mellow brew. It is during this period that the famous "Muscatel" flavour becomes pronounced. This period expresses a full bodied aroma with its infused leaves of bright copper or purplish tinge.
Mid Flush: Harvested between 2nd Flush and the Autumnal tea, the leaves are less withered thus more oxidised. If well-chosen (ours are) they represent excellent value for money.
Autumnal Flush: In the months of October and November the “Autumnal quality” makes its prominence felt. The liquor imparts a delicate, yet a silvery and glimmering character and the appearance lends a light brownish tinge or gentle copper glow. This tea has a delightfully distinct feature and taste completely differs from that of Spring and the Summer Flush. The infused tea has a golden coppery hue with an aromatic and fresh fragrance.
I look forward to your early visit.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Friday, June 5, 2009
Black teas of Yunnan Province
This week I'm extolling the virtues of the black teas of Yunnan Province in Southwest China. We stock three delicious varieties – they're all complex, rich and malty. Our newest listing is the Black Needle tea. It has a wonderful gold liquor and an intriguing buttery character. Don't miss out on these three teas.
Sencha Fukuya and a legendary Gyokuru Asahi
I've also been persuaded by two Japanese sisters, who buy Darjeeling teas from us, to list two of their favourite teas from back home. Guided and converted by them, we now stock a Sencha Fukuya and a legendary Gyokuru Asahi. A new experience for me, but that pronounced vegetal taste is now becoming essential, at least once a day in my life. I think you'll like them.
Friday, May 29, 2009
Fine and Noble – Pyramid tea bagsDear Friends, I'm really surprised at myself speaking so enthusiastically about teabags, but Fine and Noble Pyramid bags are something special. Not only do they contain whole leaf teas of the highest quality and the construction of the bags allows the best infusion of the leaves.Fine & Noble pyramid bags really satisfy the gourmet palate. They deliver elegance, flavour, tradition and enjoyment whilst containing all the goodness for which tea is becoming well known – flavournoids, polyphenols, tannis, vitamins and minerals. The range is specially selected by tea experts using only the finest teas from the “old” tea growing world – China, India and Sri-Lanka. They are manufactured using the more traditional “orthodox(1)” method rather than on the CTC(2) machines more commonly used on today’s tea bags. The quality of these teas, combined with the free-flow nylon pyramid bag, result in a slow release of flavour and character that is impossible to match with an every day tea bag. To appreciate the full flavour and quality of these teas, it is advisable to allow at least three/four minutes for brewing.
High Teas now stock the entire range of Fine and Noble teas, which includes some caffeine-free infusions.Give them a go – you won't be disappointed. Best wishes Tony Marks
(1) Orthodox ManufactureAfter selectively picking (often by hand) tea leaves. The leaves are allowed to wither, reducing their water content and making them soft and pliable. Once withered, the leaves are gently rolled to break down the cellular structure, beginning the oxidation process. This method is used for fine whole leaf teas.
(2) CTC ManufactureIn the Crush-Tear-Curl process, tea leaves are plucked and withered. After they are withered the tea leaves are passed through a series of cylindrical rollers that crush, tear and roll the tea leaves into tiny, irregular balls. CTC tea is used primarily in mass-market teabags. Given the small particle size, CTC tea has a greater surface area ratio than whole leaf tea, causing it to brew quickly and generally have a thicker body with more astringency.
Friday, February 6, 2009
What is Pu-erh Tea?
Pu-erh tea has become really popular in the West, in all its forms. It is a tea lovers favourite and is often described with terms such as rich and earthy or ripe and mellow, some would even say old tasting in, a complimentary sense.
The fast growing interest in this wonderful product has persuaded us to put together a few really good examples for you to try. In time we will expand the representation of Pu-erh teas on the list.
Pu-erh is a tea that is purposely left to age, and like a fine wine the older it gets the more prized it becomes. It's not uncommon for Pu-erhs to be many years old, usually between 1 and 5 but much older is possible, and each year that passes will only fortify its character and further mellow its flavour.
The journey from unfermented leaf to Pu-erh Tea is a remarkable one as it bears no resemblance to the methods used for making Green Tea. The leaves are withered in a similar way to Green Tea, but before all the moisture has gone they are piled into heaps to allow bacterium to react. A thin layer of mould will often develop and this is wholeheartedly encouraged as it benefits the overall character and flavour of the tea.
Pu-erh is then formed into bricks or cakes, gently wrapped in paper, and stored outside on racks to age. The final stage ensures the Pu-erh bricks mature to the full as they are then stored underground, and this is where they can lay for many years to mellow and evolve.
The medicinal benefits of Pu-erh are not without substance either, as according to scientific research it helps reduce cholesterol, increase metabolism and aids in digestion, especially that of fatty foods. Pu-erh has been highly regarded in Traditional Chinese Medicine for many years, maybe the health benefits are in the abundant microbial activity, in which case it's similar to other living foods we hold in high regard, such as live yoghurt for example.
Pu-erh gets its name from its birthplace, therefore the small county of Pu-erh in China's Yunnan Province can be thought of as its true home, and to this day Yunnan Province is still a major producer of these exceptional teas.
Today Pu-erh teas can be purchased as loose tea, and as small and larger cakes and larger cakes of compressed teas.
Brewing pu-erh tea:
- When the bricks are extremely tightly pressed it is best to use a strong knife to carefully pry out some leaves. The technique that works best is to insert the knife into the edge of the brick and then gently work it up and down until the tea loosens and falls off.
- Add about 3-4 grams per serving of tea (the amount depends upon type of pu-erh) to your teapot.
- Add hot boiling water at a full rolling boil.
- Steep for 2-3 minutes. Once the tea seems ready, give it a stir and then pour and taste. If necessary, adjust the steeping time for a stronger taste.
Thursday, February 5, 2009
Following its enormous surge in popularity thanks to positive publicity surrounding the numerous health benefits of herbal and fruit tisanes, we just had to investigate.
The first indisputable fact that we soon established is that there is a vast array of delectable flavours available to consumers. Apart from the suggested health benefits, they are just plain delicious.
what are tisanes?
Tisanes look like tea and are brewed in boiling water like tea – yet they do not come from the Camellia Sinensis bush, the plant from which all teas are made.
Instead, tisanes are made from mixtures of dried leaves, seeds, grasses, nuts, barks, fruits, flowers or other botanicals that give them their taste and contribute to an array of folk and researched-based herbal tea benefits.
Here are some of the suggested herbal tea benefits when consumed on a daily basis.
- Achieve a more calm, relaxed state of mind
- Support heart health
- Aid with stomach and digestive problems
- Provide cleansing properties for the body
- Promote energy and wellness
We were principally looking for delightful, sometimes complex beverages, that give real pleasure. They certainly do not contain the dreaded caffeine.
We have sourced our tisanes from two celebrated sources of the finest tisanes available. The herbal teas tend to come from one supplier and the fruit infusions from another specialist.
From conservative "only the real thing will do" tea drinkers, we're now convinced that there is an important place for tisanes in our range, and hope you will share our pleasure.
Please let us have your feedback.