Saturday Morning Tea

Good morning, dear tea friends! I had a wonderful trip to NJ and NYC last weekend, visiting my elderly relatives and then taking in the sights of the city.

The 9-11 Memorial was a very sobering place. The day we went there it poured rain and it felt like the sky was weeping for all those souls who lost their lives on that tragic day. It was very sad but I’m really glad I went there. Ok, on to tea…

This morning’s tea is a special treat from the Arya Estate in the Darjeeling district of northeastern India. Called Arya Estate Ruby 2nd Flush, it truly is a “gem” of a tea!

As you can see, the leaves of this tea are much larger than an average Darjeeling. They are plucked from specially grown clonal tea bushes and carefully processed by hand to ensure their leaf remains intact and the flavor is developed. As I’ve mentioned before, the term “clonal” means that this tea came from tea plants grown from the cuttings from other tea plants of superior stock.

I used twice the amount of tea I usually spoon into my glass teapot and steeped the leaves for a little over 3 minutes in boiling point water (212F).

It is said that the Arya Estate was started by a group of Buddhist monks who carefully developed their tea plants from some seeds brought over from China. I love the stories and history about tea, don’t you? It gives more depth to my tea experience.

The beautiful, amber-colored tea liquor glows like a jewel in my glass teapot. As I gently lift the lid, a strong fruity, pineapple aroma delights my senses.

This pineapple quality follows through into the flavor, along with notes of muscatel and other tropical fruit. It is very smooth with the characteristic second flush rich body and a sweetness that lingers in the finish. Yum! This tea would stand up well to milk but I recommend drinking it straight to enjoy the fruity ambrosia.

Today is my grandkids’ birthday party. They are two years apart but their birthdates are 2 days apart so it’s a party for the both of them – a “Princess and Pirate” party. What fun!

Thanks for joining me for a cup of tea and I’ll see you next week!

“Write it on your heart that every day is the best day of the year.”

~Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Saturday Morning Tea

I know that I’ve mentioned this before but if someone asked me the question – what’s your favorite tea? – I would have to be honest and admit it. Darjeelings have a special place in my heart. What is it about them, you might ask, that puts them at the top of my list? Well, there are so many wonderful characteristics but I would have to say that it’s their fragrance that transports me to another place. A quiet, calm place. To me, tea is more than just its flavor. It is an experience and a Darjeeling definitely fulfills that for me.

So, without further ado, this morning’s tea is a Darjeeling from the Arya estate and is called Ruby. A gem of a cuppa, for sure.

As you can see, the leaves are much larger than an average Darjeeling. They are plucked from specially grown clonal tea bushes and carefully processed by hand to ensure their leaf remains intact and the flavor is developed.

I used twice the amount of tea I usually spoon into my glass teapot and steeped the leaves for 3 1/2 minutes in boiling point water.

Just think – this leaf started its life in another part of this world. A land of towering, majestic mountains and a climate that nurtures its careful growth into something unique that produces a delicious brew.

It is said that the Arya estate was started by a group of Buddhist monks who carefully developed their tea plants from some seeds brought over from China. I reviewed another Arya Ruby several years ago on a snowy day in early spring. You can read that review here.

A customer told me this past week that he loves Darjeelings for their beautiful amber color. I agree!

A pronounced fruity, grape aroma wafts up as I pour my first cup.

The fruitiness carries on into the flavor with rich notes of muscatel. This tea is a second flush harvest, picked in the summertime. With each sip, I’m transported to a warm, sunny time where swollen, ripe fruit are just ready to be picked. Mmmmm…

Today I’m attending a holiday concert where a good friend is performing with her harp. I can’t think of anything better to get into the spirit of the season than to close my eyes and settle into the lovely angelic strains of harp music.

What are you doing to get into the spirit of this holiday season?

“Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.” ~Francis P. Church