Songs for Teatime!

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Part of Kat’s weekend tea ritual includes slowly sipping a good cup of tea while listening to music. Kat says taking some time to fill her senses with fragrant tea and her favorite music goes a long way at helping her feel peaceful and happy. No matter what craziness is going on during the weekend, she almost always finds a few minutes for this special ritual. Always the helpful teacup, I thought it would be fun to find her music that mentions tea. I’ve come up with a fun little playlist that would be perfect for a tea party, backyard summer BBQ, or of course a few moments for yourself.

  • Have A Cuppa Tea- The Kinks: This is a classic song from a classic British rock band! Pull out your English breakfast tea and get sipping to this. This song is from their 1971 album The Muswell Hillbillies. Kat’s mother adores The Kinks and her love of good British classic rock has influenced Kat’s music choices as well.
  • Tea For Two- Django Reinhardt & Stephane Grappelli: this is a lively, cheerful song to listen to on a Sunday morning. It’s jazzy, catchy, and you’ll be tapping your toes while you sip on your tea. I’d recommend a nice smooth, comforting Keemun tea to go with this. Kat likes to pair music from Django Reinhardt with Sunday brunch gatherings. It’s lovely to listen to, but also great in the background.

 

  • Tea For One- Led Zeppelin: This is a surprisingly jazzy yet mellow rock song, very good for savoring a cup and relaxing. It reminds me of sipping iced tea on a hot summer day. I’d pair it with a nice, citrusy iced tea.
  • Englishman in New York- Sting: If you follow tea folks through various social media sites, you’ll occasionally see someone posting the quote ‘I don’t drink coffee, I take tea my dear” which is from this famous song of his 1987 album …Nothing Like the Sun. This song also has a jazzy feel, and is great for relaxing with a British style strong cup of black tea with milk.

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  • Tea in the Sahara: – The Police: For those that really like Sting, he also sang about tea with The Police back in 1983 from their album Synchronicity. It’s got the classic Police 80s sound, and is perfect with a nuanced oolong tea. Lately Kat is loving the oolong tea from Wegmans. This tea is a little toasty, earthy, with a nutty finish. It reminds Kat of going to her mother’s favorite Chinese restaurant as a child. Mom would get a big pot of oolong tea and they’d share dumplings and noodles until they couldn’t eat another bite. With a full belly Kat would steal delicious sips of her mother’s tea and enjoy the fragrant brew. The Wegmans tea brings her right back to the restaurant, enjoying a special afternoon with her mom. It’s a tea that’s light enough for an afternoon sip, but complex enough for a meditative cup.
  • Everything Stops for Tea- Jack Buchanan- This is a delightful song from the 1940s on the joys of stopping a crazy day to enjoy a cup of tea. He sings about how much the British love their tea, and how it basically makes the day better. I couldn’t agree more! If you can find this lovely song, do give it a listen. It’s perfect with an afternoon sip of a hearty black, or Chinese green tea.

If you’re a Disney fan, I’m sure you are quite familiar with this one:

  • Be Our Guest- From Beauty and the Beast- How can I include a list of tea songs without a song that includes a singing teapot and teacup? Dearies, did you know tea is actually in the lyrics?

With dessert, she’ll want tea
And my dear that
’s fine with me
While the cups do their soft-shoein

I
ll be bubbling, I’ll be brewing
I
ll get warm, piping hot

See? I’d say this is one that you can drink your tea of choice and enjoy! This is a song that would be fun for a child’s tea party too! Break out the rooibos or other herbal teas and have a festive party!

Dearies, I hope you like my fun list of tea songs. I’m sure there are many, many more we could add to this list. Do you have any favorites? Do be sure to let me know! I’d love to keep my tea playlist growing.

Teas For National Orchid Day

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Dearies, April 16th was National Orchid Day. I bet you didn’t know that! I found out while examining the kitchen calendar. I love orchids, aren’t they just so beautiful? They may be challenging to grow, but their unique shape and vibrant colors are absolutely worth the effort! Kat actually has an orchid plant that she’s lovingly taken care of for years. It often blooms toward the end of the winter time, and it just brightens up the whole house. Just when Kat starts complaining that winter will never end, the plant gifts us with a burst of springtime color. Dearies, did you know that many oolong teas have a natural orchid aroma and flavor to them? You can bring the beauty of blooming orchids right to your cup.

In fact, there’s even an oolong tea that’s called ‘honey orchid’. The aroma and flavor comes directly from the leaves, and is not an added flavor. Mi Lan Xiang Dan Cong is literally honey orchid oolong tea. The orchid flavor and aroma is quite prominent. This tea is grown in the Phoenix mountain area which produces beautiful aromatic oolongs. The tea is fruity, honey sweet, and quite floral. A definite must if you haven’t tried it before.

Tieguanyin (Iron Goddess of Mercy) is one of my most favorite oolong teas, and it has a powerful floral aroma. One sip will transport you to a lush, exotic garden. A good quality oolong will leave your palate remembering that floral flavor for quite a long time.

You can also find oolong teas that have been scented with flowers to recreate that orchid scent. These are of course lovely to drink as well, especially if you are looking for a very strongly scented floral tea. One sip and you’ll imagine your house is filled with vases of gorgeous flowers.

Oolongs range in flavor and can be very light, similar to green teas or much more heavily roasted. I love that you can pick an oolong based on how you’re feeling. Do you want something light and floral with heavy orchid notes, or something more toasty and nutty? If you’d like to learn more about oolong teas, the best way is to taste as many as you can. Prepare them, taste, see what you like. I wrote a post all about oolong a little while back you can find it here.

Kat and I have decided that we love these oolong teas so much, we’re not going to just have them around this floral holiday. We’ll be toasting National Orchid Day all spring and summer long.

Teas To Welcome Spring

SpringTeas

Dearies, I’m just so tired of this cold weather, aren’t you? Just when I thought I couldn’t take any more of it, I noticed a few green shoots sprouting in the garden! Spring is ready to burst forth, and I can barely wait another minute! I’ve decided to round up a few lovely floral teas to properly welcome springtime. What could be better than looking at the budding flowers while sipping on a lovely floral tea? Bring a bouquet into your cup and the winter weather will feel lightyears away.

Jasmine tea is a perfect choice to melt away the frost. The sweet, delicate jasmine combined with grassy green tea will bring you right to a sunny meadow with the dainty white flowers. Close your eyes, breathe in the intoxicating floral aroma. You’ll feel as good as new!

Rose teas are also a wonderful choice. I adore Kat’s rose garden and the scent always uplifts. Sometimes she’ll set a little table in front of her trellis of roses and we’ll enjoy tea in the sunshine. A sip of rose tea will make you feel like you’re right in the garden.  I enjoy green teas scented with rose, and you can often find teas with the rose petals mixed right in. It’s beautiful to look at and to drink. It would also work well as a potpourri. I’ve also seen rose as a tisane, all on its own.

SpringTeaDorset

Chamomile is a springtime favorite for Kat. She has many different chamomile choices in her cupboard, and her newest favorite is called Cool Chamomile from British company Dorset Tea. Kat’s friend Jocelyn moved to England a few years ago and always sends her teas she can’t find in the states. This chamomile from Dorset is one of Jocelyn’s favorites and now Kat is obsessed with it as well. The soothing sweet chamomile is accented with tangy raspberry and lemongrass for a unique and delicious tea. The lemongrass makes me think of those bright green early spring shoots that are sprouting up all over the garden. This combination is bright, yet relaxing. Kat often has this tea in the evening since it’s herbal and won’t keep her awake. She also has been making it iced, as a refreshing sunny sip to keep those winter blues away. It’s the perfect tea to welcome spring!

 Springtime is also when the new harvests of teas start to arrive at your favorite tea shop. Be sure to ask for the spring green, oolong, white, and first flush Darjeeling teas. They will be fresh and vibrant, and perfect for your cup.

Pairing Tea And Pie

PieTea

You know I always look for reasons for celebration, and I’ve noticed that March 14th (3/14) is Pi Day! Yes, there is an entire day dedicated to celebrate the mathematical constant 3.14. Dearies, I’m more interested in tea and treats than mathematics so I’ve decided to celebrate with pie! Pie and tea, to be exact.

Let’s start off with sweet pies and teas. I like pairing a first flush Darjeeling with lighter tasting fruit pies such as peach, lemon, and strawberry. The earthy, grapey sweet muscatel notes in the tea work very nicely with these delicate fruit flavors. A light green tea such as sencha or nuttier dragonwell would also be a good choice. A lightly roasted oolong such as a Lishan would be a lovely choice. It is sweet, floral and a little bit grassy. These teas are light enough to let the delicate fruit flavors shine through, and their sweet and floral notes will complement the fruit.

For stronger fruits like blueberry, and cherry I like heavily roasted oolongs such as Tieguanyin and Da Hong Pao. The strong toasty notes, stone-fruit sweetness, even caramel notes compliment the pies and let the darker flavors come out. The fruit have bold flavors and need a stronger tea to compliment them. You could also try a nice Chinese black tea such as Dian Hong, which will be sweet, malty, with hints of dried fruit. The brightness of the tea will bring out the tart fruit notes.

You could also go for a savory pie! How about a shepherd’s pie with a dark puerh? The puerh will work well in cutting through that savory meaty goodness. It also helps with the digestion! Or I think a second flush Darjeeling would be lovely with a chicken pot-pie. It’s just the right amount of earthy, floral, and a little bit astringent to complement the chicken and veggies.

Instead of pairing teas with your pie, how about putting tea in the pie? I found this scrumptious recipe for Sweet Tea Lemon Chess Pie. This sweet, buttery, lemony tea-filled pie would be the perfect way to celebrate pi day! I’m printing this recipe out right now and leaving it on Kat’s desk. I’m not too subtle when it comes to hints, especially tea-related ones!

So my lovelies, will you be celebrating pi day with some pie and tea? I can’t think of a better reason to indulge. Can you?

Know Your Teaware: Gaiwan

gaiwan

Dearies we’ve talked a little bit about different teaware, and today I’m featuring a vessel that helps you brew your tea carefully, with attention and reverence for the tea leaves. One of the ways to get the full flavor out of full leaf tea is to use a gaiwan. If you are a tea enthusiast you’ve probably seen one of these vessels, and perhaps you own one yourself!

 A gaiwan is a bowl-shaped vessel with a lid and saucer. You put a large amount of leaves inside, and use short steeps of tea. You use the lid to carefully hold back the leaves as you pour out the tea into a pitcher, and then pour into cups. It’s a simple way to prepare tea, and extract the full flavor of the leaves. Kat likes using a gaiwan because it helps her get to really know the tea. You brew small batches with quick steeps, and re-steep many times over. By brewing this way you can see how the flavor of the tea changes with each steep, and watch the leaves open up and release all of their unique flavors.

 You can use just about any loose leaf tea with nice big leaves. Kat uses her gaiwan for everything from Chinese green and black teas, to puerh, and oolongs. It takes a little bit of practice to get used to brewing and pouring with a gaiwan. So be sure to use one that is inexpensive and sturdy for your first experience. Kat picked up an inexpensive thick ceramic gaiwan in her local Asian market for just a few dollars. It worked nicely as a practice vessel. She’s now graduated to one that’s slightly more delicate but she hasn’t purchased an expensive one as she still feels a bit clumsy with it. She also has a glass gaiwan that gets used all the time. It’s sturdy and you can watch the tea leaves change with each steep.

 The best way to learn how to use a gaiwan is practice. A visual aid is handy, and this video is a great introduction. Since the vessel is usually ceramic or glass, you don’t need to worry about using it for one particular tea, like a yixing teapot. You can simply clean it out and use with a different tea. Kat has started using a gaiwan to prepare small cups of tea for friends because it makes a delicious cup of tea but also is fun to watch! You get a little table side theatrics with your tea tasting.

 Kat likes to set up her tea table with flowers and a favorite tea pet (dearies, learn more about tea pets here!)This makes the gaiwan brewing process a bit more personal. Do you have a favorite gaiwan? What teas do you enjoy preparing with it?

Know Your Teaware: Yixing Clay Teapots

yixing

The last teapot we discussed is the brown betty. Today’s teapot also has a brown hue, but is very different! You may have seen these teapots in specialty tea shops and online. They are usually small, because they should be used with large amount of leaves in a small amount of water.

Yixing is a county in China, that has a special type of clay that cannot be found anywhere else. The clay has special minerals that make the teapots porous, so it absorbs the flavor of your tea. If you use one particular tea with your yixing teapot, it will ‘season’ the pot and develop a beautiful patina. It is thought that using one type of tea in a yixing will create a pot that produces an exceptionally nuanced cup of tea. The best teapots from Yixing will either be of purple stone clay (zisha) or clay made from yixing mud. They build up the essence of the tea you steep in it so you should only use one type of tea in the pot.

True yixing pots are very expensive because they are crafted by skilled artisans using true yixing clay. These days with a quick search you can find yixing teapots everywhere online. There are many that are faked, and also cheaply made. It’s of course absolutely fine to get a cheap yixing teapot, but beware if you are looking for an expensive handmade pot. There are many that are called handmade but are actually fake machine made pots. When you are buying online make sure it’s from a reputable source. If you are unsure, you shouldn’t purchase it. The best way is to examine the pot up close. Here are some important things to look for in a good yixing pot:

Check the lid: wiggle that lid around. It should fit perfectly and not move around. When you spin the lid around in the pot, it should feel smooth, and not stick or grind. It should also fit securely.

Check the inside: Look at the inside of the pot- does it look handmade? There should be evidence that it was made by hand and not through a machine or poured into a mold. You might notice slight fingerprints or dimples where fingers formed the pot. There are many good pots that are assembled with machine made pieces but finished by hand.  So try to keep an open (but critical) mind.

Check the color: Yixing pots can vary in color but they should never be shiny. If the color is too bright or shiny, it could be a painted or treated pot.

Because these pots change with every use, you can watch your pot evolve over the years. The color will slowly change, and the flavors it absorbs will enhance your tea. These pots are usually quite small, because they’re made for quick infusions with generous portions of leaves. This is the traditional Chinese gongfu way of tea preparation.

As I mentioned, you need to choose one type of tea to use in this teapot. This way you’ll properly season the pot and have a truly exceptional cup of tea. The best teas to use in a yixing are Puerh, certain oolongs, or black teas. You want to stay away from green and white teas in your yixing, the pot retains too much heat and could ruin the taste of your tea. If there is one type of oolong, puerh, or black tea that you love most, season your yixing with it, and the pot will be your teatime companion for years to come. There are many different ways to season a Yixing pot. This is the way that Kat seasoned her little pot, and she was very happy with the results.

Yixing pots date back to the 15th century! When Kat uses one of these pots she says she can feel the history in every special sip. Dearies do you use a Yixing teapot? Where did you get it? What tea do you steep in it? I’d love to learn more.

Behind the Leaf: Oolong Tea

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I think the first time Kat had an oolong tea was in a Chinese restaurant. She wasn’t very taken with it because it was a dusty bag of low grade oolong. But when a close friend brought back tea from her trip to China, she had a chance to taste a delicious roasted oolong. It was so different from the generic stuff she’d had in the past, she couldn’t believe it was in the same category. Oolong teas have a wide range of flavor and quality based on where it is grown and how it’s processed.

Oolong translates to Black Dragon (Wu Long) in Chinese. This supposedly refers to the black snakes that would sometime wind around the tea trees. These snakes were often referred to as black dragons! I try not to think about that. The tea originated in the Fujian province of China back in the 17th century. Oolong can usually be found in two main different leaf shapes- ball-shaped rolled leaves, and thin wiry leaves.

Oolongs have a wide range of flavors because they can be oxidized and roasted for varying amounts of time. Oolongs are considered semi-oxidized teas, and fall between green and black teas due to this level of oxidation. The oolongs that are closer to green tea have delicate floral notes. Oolongs that are closer to black tea are more woodsy, fruity and sweet.

There are many varieties of oolong produced in China and Taiwan, and it would take me ages to discuss them! Dearies, Kat will be home soon and I need to make sure I’m ready to create her next cup of tea, so I’m going to focus on a few types based on growing region.

In Southern Fujian, Ti Guan Yin, or Iron goddess of Mercy (named after the Chinese Goddess of Mercy) is one of the most popular types of Chinese oolong tea. The leaves are tightly rolled and will start to unfurl as you steep. This tea can have a range of flavors from floral to a bit vegetal and woodsy. It is a very popular type of oolong tea.

In Northern Fujian, Wuyi oolongs are produced. This tea is called ‘rock tea’, and it is grown in the Wuyi mountains of Fujian. These are heavily roasted teas, dark and woodsy. The leaves usually have a long ‘strip’ style, or slightly twisted shape and are not rolled. The rocky terrain in the growing region creates certain minerals in the soil and transform the flavor in the tea. Some of Kat’s favorite Wuyi oolongs are Da Hong Pao, and Rou Gui.

In Guangdong Province (Phoenix mountain), Dan Cong oolongs have a rich brown color and can be quite sweet and fruity. These teas usually have a medium to heavy roast.

Taiwan produces a few varieties of oolong. Tung Ting (Dong Ding) is the most well known and is floral, buttery, and fruity, yet delicate and sweet. Quite a pleasant tea.

These are just a few of the many wonderful oolongs to discover. The best way to learn more is to find as many different types as possible, and get tasting. Buying sample sizes is a more cost-effective way of trying these teas. Many tea shops have sample sizes available.

If you are using whole-leaf tea, the best way to get the full tasting experience is to use a large amount of leaf in a small teapot or gaiwan. Don’t forget to reuse those leaves! As I mentioned in a previous post, oolongs can be steeped numerous times and the flavor begins to change and develop with each steep.

Sips of these delicious teas will bring you to verdant mountain tea gardens coated in mist. Each steep of oolong has a new story to tell. What are some of your favorites?

Tea Apps

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Back when I had tea adventures with Char her steeps were timed with a clock or wristwatch, and she’d write her tasting notes in a little blue notebook. She’d never be without that notebook! It was worn and loved, filled with her tea tasting memories. Kat has a similar notebook for her own tea notes, but she’ll often forget to bring it with her when she goes out. I am a very helpful teacup, but I can’t always remind her to take it! I have so many things to focus on, like tea inventory, and keeping the soup pot away from the frying pan. Those two really like to bicker.

The other day Kat came home in a rush, all excited to tell me about a tea app for her smartphone she had just learned about. There was a tea-tasting at the local grocery store and the woman preparing the tea used an app on her phone to time the steep. Kat was excited and they chatted about various apps that can be used to steep, track the teas you drink, and record tea notes! This is a wonderful idea, especially for someone like Kat that is always with her phone, but rarely remembers that notebook.

Here are a few apps we’ve discovered. Some are free and others are paid:

Tea ($1.99) – This is an app that encompasses many different useful features. The app has a tea timer based on type of tea you are steeping and also a place to write notes and rate the tea. It also suggests the appropriate water temperature for the steep. If you don’t agree with the suggested time and temperature settings, you can add your own. It also has a ‘tea encyclopedia’ where you can look up information on various teas, where they are grown and processed, and get steeping tips. The app offers an interesting feature that tells you how much tea you have left in your package after each session, if you enter in how much you started with before your first steep.

Camellia Tea Timer (free)- This is a basic app that is simple yet effective. There are 7 preset types of teas with steeping times and temperatures (you can manually add more teas if you’d like to). You can edit the info on each tea if you don’t agree with the time/temp presets. You can’t make any notes, but it’s a handy app to have when you’re out and want a timer for your tea.

Aromatic– ($1.99) This app has many different teas to choose from and describes the growing regions with pictures and maps. You get a timer, and a helpful tea glossary but no room for tasting notes.

Tea Forte Tea Timer (free)- This one can be used with any tea, but is geared towards the brand’s own blends. Still it has a useful timer, and some fun cocktail recipes.

While Kat was searching for apps, she also found a few tea-themed games for her phone! If you’re looking for a little entertainment there is a game where you can plant, grow, process, and sell your own tea! It’s called Tea Firm: RePlanted (free). There is also My Tea Party (free), a game where you can plan your own tea party. I think I’ll have to give that one a try sometime. Although it would be strange to have someone serve tea to me! I like to do all of my own steeping.

Are there any helpful tea apps that aren’t listed here? I’d love to learn more about them! Do let us know in the comments.

 

Re-steeping Your Tea Leaves

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Tea isn’t just a delicious drink, it is also economical. Even the most expensive tea leaves seem a bit more reasonable when you realize those leaves can be used more than once. Dearies, don’t get rid of those leaves after one cup! You can get a few servings of tea with just one batch of leaves.

For whole leaf teas, you can get quite a few steeps out of those leaves. The color and flavor of the teas change after each steep. Many teas get lighter, but oolongs and pu-erhs will start to change drastically. New flavors will be introduced after a few cups. I love hearing Kat’s reaction as she goes for her 3rd or 4th steep of one of these teas. She is always amazed at how the flavors transform.

If you are using a bagged tea, whole-leaf bags are best to get more than one steep. Bags with small leaf bits will not do as well. When the leaves are cut into small pieces, the flavor is infused much quicker, so there is less to give in a second steep. But it never hurts to try and see what happens.

Black teas will lose the most flavor after a couple of steeps. But the larger the leaves, the more you’ll get out of them. Pu-erh teas are amazing for re-steeping. Some can get upwards of 20 steeps! Oolongs also hold up to many steeps and green teas can get a few as well. Basically the larger the leaf, the more life you’ll get out of them.

Kat and I always steep up a storm, and here are a few of our re-steeping tips:

-Be careful making that first serving of tea. You don’t want to over-steep the leaves! That will take away some of the power for the next infusion. To make sure you don’t over-steep your leaves, follow the suggested steep time and temperature for the tea, and use a timer.

-If you are using a teapot or cup, use a tea strainer for the leaves. That way you can take the leaves out once they are infused and stop that steeping process.

-You can also use a gaiwan, which is a traditional Chinese tea vessel. When brewing in a gaiwan you generally use more leaves, steep quickly, and empty the liquid out each time you infuse into a separate cup. If you’d like to learn more about using a gaiwan, you can check out this helpful guide.

-When you re-steep you may want to increase the brew time just a little bit with each steep. The leaves are losing their potency, and can use the extra infusion time.

It’s difficult to say exactly how many steeps you can get out of a particular tea. Taste is subjective, so just go with your palate. Don’t be afraid to try one more steep. If the brew still tastes good after a few infusions, go for one more!

Pairing Sweets With Tea

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Dearies, I’ve been studying our calendar in the kitchen and noticed there are two days in October dedicated to sweet treats! National Dessert Day (Oct. 14th) and National Chocolate Day (Oct. 28th). Throw in the candy-loving holiday of Halloween, and I think October should just be called Sweet Tooth Month!

These sweet celebrations reminded me of a trip I took with Char to Vienna. Such a beautiful, historic city, and gorgeous pastries of every size and flavor! Daydreaming of celebrations and Viennese pastry led me to an idea- wouldn’t it be fun to a have a tea and mini dessert party!? I think it’s the perfect excuse to have at least one tea and dessert get-together, so I mentioned it to Kat this morning. She of course agreed. We got right down to business and started thinking about the sweet treats to serve and what teas to pair with them.

When you are pairing teas with the sweets, there are two main directions you can go in- you can try to pair the sweets with teas that have similar flavor notes (floral, honey, fruity, spicy, nutty, etc). Or you could pair by strength- lighter desserts with lighter teas and rich desserts with bolder teas.

Kat and I have greatly enjoyed doing our ‘research’. Here are some flavor combinations we are dreaming (and drooling) over:

Dark chocolate desserts are strong with a slightly bitter sweetness. We enjoyed pairing these with a malty bold Assam that stood up to the strong flavor. A full bodied floral and sweet second flush Darjeeling also complimented the chocolate. My favorite is serving an Earl Grey with that dark chocolate dessert. The bergamot enhances the sweet bitterness beautifully. We figured this out when Kat brought home a box of artisanal chocolates a co-worker gave her as a thank you note. When she tried the dark chocolate early grey truffle, the flavors were singing on her tongue.

For a milk chocolate dessert, try a gentle and vegetal sencha green tea or a lightly roasted floral oolong. The flavor of the chocolate is a bit mellower, and the sweetness will pair well with the green tea. The floral and honey notes in the oolong are lovely with the milk chocolate.

For a super-rich dessert like cheesecake, go as bold as you can with your tea. Smoky flavors also work well, to cut through the richness. Try keemun, or lapsang souchong for strong flavors, a bit of astringency, and the smokiness. The layers of flavor will add new dimension to your dessert. Our favorite tea to pair with a decadent treat is an earthy, sweet pu-erh to cut through the richness and soothe the tummy.

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Since it is apple season, bake up an apple cake, or mini apple tarts and serve it with Darjeeling. The grapey fruit flavor of the Darjeeling will complement the apples quite nicely. The floral notes will make you feel as if you are sitting in an apple orchard!

For milder desserts a white tea would be lovely. For something nutty, try pairing with hojicha, a roasted green tea. Have a dessert with caramel? A medium-roasted oolong would pair nicely.

What would you serve and a tea and dessert party? The best way to decide is to get out there and get tasting!