Sunday, October 5, 2008

Blind Tasting Tea


Quite a few years ago, Tea Drinker, (aka my husband) told me he knew exactly what he wanted to do with his life: study tea and open an on-line loose leaf tea company. I warmed to the idea, mainly, because tea, beyond Lipton, was something that the both of us knew little about! Why go with something safe and obvious, and pursue winemaking in Napa Valley? Way too predictable for us!

As he dove into learning about tea, I continued my education with wine. We approached tea the same way we approached my wine studies- surround your self by all things tea/wine, and do lots of blind tastings. Blind tastings take away any preconceived notions about what you are sampling, and help you fine tune your palate. In case you’re wondering, we do not wear blind-folds, and spin each other around, nor do we stab at the air trying to find the tea cup. Sounds like a great game after a night of drinking wine, though.

We sample teas that are sent to us by our distributors and taste without knowledge of supplier, price, and grade. We have a basic scoring system giving points for color, aroma, flavor, and finish. We usually taste by variety- all green, black, or etc, and focus on a region. I can guarantee you that the Tea Drinker has personally selected all of your DTL teas, primarily as a result from these blind tastings. Recently, we tasted nine different Darjeeling teas. And Drink the Leaf Selimbong Estate came in first place. We also found another Darjeeling tea from a single estate that will be added soon. So, remember trust your palate- always look for balance in life, wine, and tea. It’s the key!

2 comments:

Cory said...

New to the "teadrinker's" scene. Any recommendations to get me started?

I think i tend to like somewhat minty flavors/aromas but am willing to try/taste anything twice.

Tree said...

Hi Cory,
A great minty herbal tea is the Peppermint. Very popular. Have fun