Hot Tea, Cold

The past week has been surprising warm. Hot, even. These are the days that iced tea is most appealing, and I have been brewing batch after batch. I don’t like drinking plain water, so I make iced tea the old fashioned way, using cold water, a window sill, and time. This dispenses any bitterness, and insures that I drink the required amount of fluid each day. An adequate amount of fluid reduces the threat of wrinkles, or so I have been told. I don’t even care if it’s true or not. It could be. I am not taking any chances. 

The obvious teas that ice well are the black teas, and the herbals. So I am avoiding them. Instead, I am making iced green teas, and whites, with some refreshing and light flavors. 

Japanese green tea produces a tangy iced tea. I use Sen Cha, from Sugimoto Tea, which is sold at Uwajimaya, an Asian specialty supermarket in Seattle. The taste is refreshing, the same sort of feeling I get from something citrusy. It perks up the mouth, and your brain says, “hey, what’s this?” Doesn’t it?

Iced Sen Cha is very different from hot Sen Cha, like two entirely different teas. The other tea that surprises me, cold, is Chado Tea Room’s White Champagne Raspberry. Delicate when hot, it seems to pick up flavor when cold. It smells like summer, and a trip to the lake. 

Now we are having a cold, miserable, rainy day, and I am opting for Snow Lotus’s Honey Orchid Black tea. Dry, the huge, dark leaves smell like, well, honey, and brewed, it has a sweet and almost nutty taste. It’s a tea that can be steeped many times, and still retain a smooth taste and mouthfeel as I wait for the rest of summer.  

You can sample these teas at the NorthWest Tea Festival, Oct 4th & 5th, at Fischer Pavilion at Seattle Center. Or anytime before, for that matter. 

Come, taste and experiment with teas you know, and some you don’t.