Tea of the Week for February 13, 2017: Maple Forest! (A Shou Mei/Houjicha Blend)
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Tea Description: I've made a few different teas with this blend of Houjicha and Shou Mei thus far, but I think this one may just be my favorite. when I first tasted the combination of Shou Mei and Houjicha together, I imagined that maple would be a perfect choice to flavor the tea base. The woodsy flavor of the blend pairs seamlessly with the sweet, delightful maple notes.
This is sweet and maple-y with a nice, toasty background flavor. Slightly earthy, warm, woodsy. Absolutely perfect for this time of year when it seems that the winter will never end - if this is what I'll be drinking all winter long - then bring it on!
organic ingredients:roasted green tea, white tea, calendula petals and natural flavors.
You know, I was a little reluctant to order more Shou Mei tea because I decided that hey, you know what? I prefer Bai Mu Dan, so why even bother with Shou Mei? So most of the white tea reblends that I made after the first couple that I crafted with Shou Mei I switched up to Bai Mu Dan and I was a lot happier. But a tea friend suggested to me that I try combining Houjicha and Shou Mei together so I decided to give it a try. And you know what? I'm glad I did because I love this combination! The two teas together work very nicely.
The Houjicha softens the strong earthy notes of the Shou Mei and lets the soft sweetness of the white tea shine through while the Shou Mei lightens up the Houjicha's strong roasty-toasty flavor that can sometimes be a tad too aggressive and what you're left with is something that's lightly toasted, sweet, and smooth. Woodsy without being too earthy. Just really nice to sip!
And this woodsy combination works so well with the maple which shouldn't be a surprise, right? I mean, maple ... woodsy ... you get the connection, right? I'm really thrilled with how this turned out. If you like maple, you're sure to love this!
To brew: I recommend using 1 1/2 teaspoons of tea to 12 ounces of water heated to 180˚F and let steep for 3 1/2 minutes. Strain and let cool for at least 5 minutes - but don't let this one cool too long because I really think that the roasty-toasty-ness is best enjoyed as a hot drink!