Author Topic: The Tea Thread  (Read 432225 times)  

Offline crebel

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Re: The Tea Thread
« Reply #7100 on: July 12, 2020, 04:27:03 pm »
That teapot is a beauty. Did you order it?

I did get that wished for teapot from DH for my birthday.  The look of it makes me happy.  The function is just okay - the top opening has a ledge on one side instead of a completely round hole, so my large infuser does not fit in.  This morning I used a smaller wire infuser, but that did not give the tea leaves enough swimming room and the brew was not as flavorful.  I'll try putting tea directly in the pot, then decanting through a strainer and back into the pot for serving, or self-made tea bags and see if that helps.  The spout is also a little long/tall for the height of the pot and requires a careful pour to not make a mess.

I wouldn't recommend it or buy it again because of the function, but I'm not sending it back and will continue to use it because of the form!

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    Offline Atunah

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7101 on: July 12, 2020, 05:38:11 pm »
    Och, darn. Its so hard to find the pots that combine both, function and look. I have a few I absolutely love looking at, but not really use. For some of the same reasons. Either I can't get the infuser in, or they are hard to clean, or they dribble. I have one with such a small opening that no infuser fits and when I put the leaves in without it, its  pain to get them back out after brewing as I can't stick my hand in. I try not to put all my leafs into the garbage disposal.

    One thing that does work is a tea sock. They are usually larger than the paper filters so let the tea expand. Look for also whats called Thai tea filters, they are similar. Nut milk bags are another option. Since they are all washable fabric, they work well. Boil them in hot water before using the first time. After use, just rinse them out with some non scented soap if needed. And if they get really gunky, just boil them again.

    This is one with a holder. Kind of like these. They come in different sizes.
    https://www.amazon.com/Reusable-Coffee-Traditional-Strainer-Dripper/dp/B07QMFQT54/
    « Last Edit: July 12, 2020, 05:40:09 pm by Atunah »

    Offline crebel

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7102 on: July 16, 2020, 05:31:52 am »
    This morning I forgot to set a timer on a 6-cup pot of Seven Sons puerh. I had added a couple of good-sized chunks and it probably brewed for 15-20 minutes.  Holy moly, it is dark as sin and delicious.  Tastes like I've added caramel.  YUM.  Thank goodness it is so forgiving to over-brewing!

    Offline Atunah

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7103 on: July 16, 2020, 07:44:02 am »
     ;D I need to get another one of those cakes. I had it before and it is really good. Its on my list for next order. Puerh is very vergiving. But I wonder about the caffeine content after a long steep. Googling tells me about 60-70 grams of caffeine in black puerh. More if steeped longer. 100 grams. And most can tolerate 400 grams of caffeine a day. Coffee has 95 grams. Or so they say.

    400 grams a day are for whippersnappers. We got this. We been training for that all our lives.  ;D

    Offline crebel

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7104 on: August 05, 2020, 05:01:20 pm »
    It was past time to refill all of my empty jars of tea from Gong Fu, so I placed an online order on Sunday (when they are closed).  I had an e-mail fairly early on Monday saying the package was ready to be shipped and that I should have it on Thursday.  It came yesterday (Tuesday) afternoon!  Have I ever mentioned how much I love the Gong Fu tea store and Mr. Mike, Mrs. Mike/Deb, and George who always take such good care of their customers?  ;D

    I now have fresh supplies of Cream Assam, Nandi Hills, Red Plum, The Himalayan, Wuyi Rock, Sticky Rice, and Milk Oolong. Yippee Skippy!!  As always, a distinct lean to black teas ...

    I also ordered a 2-oz bag of the Sun Moon Lake Hon Cha which I mentioned back in June.  I brewed a 6-cup pot of it this morning.  This is some yummy stuff.  Atunah, next time you order from them be sure to try it. Not a malty Assam, lighter but creamy and full-bodied.  I've read people saying a tea has a "sweet potato" finish, but I've never related to that as a tasting note.  This one does, to me, have an almost sweet potato aroma in the dry leaves and finish in the brewed taste.  Too expensive to be a daily drinker in my budget, but I will get a 2-oz bag any time I order.

    Thank goodness for tea to help keep me sane in these trying times.

    Offline Atunah

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7105 on: August 05, 2020, 07:38:22 pm »
    It was past time to refill all of my empty jars of tea from Gong Fu, so I placed an online order on Sunday (when they are closed).  I had an e-mail fairly early on Monday saying the package was ready to be shipped and that I should have it on Thursday.  It came yesterday (Tuesday) afternoon!  Have I ever mentioned how much I love the Gong Fu tea store and Mr. Mike, Mrs. Mike/Deb, and George who always take such good care of their customers?  ;D

    I now have fresh supplies of Cream Assam, Nandi Hills, Red Plum, The Himalayan, Wuyi Rock, Sticky Rice, and Milk Oolong. Yippee Skippy!!  As always, a distinct lean to black teas ...

    I also ordered a 2-oz bag of the Sun Moon Lake Hon Cha which I mentioned back in June.  I brewed a 6-cup pot of it this morning.  This is some yummy stuff.  Atunah, next time you order from them be sure to try it. Not a malty Assam, lighter but creamy and full-bodied.  I've read people saying a tea has a "sweet potato" finish, but I've never related to that as a tasting note.  This one does, to me, have an almost sweet potato aroma in the dry leaves and finish in the brewed taste.  Too expensive to be a daily drinker in my budget, but I will get a 2-oz bag any time I order.

    Thank goodness for tea to help keep me sane in these trying times.
    Oh don't worry, I have my list and I keep adding to it. I mean literally I have a notepad where I write down teas to order. So I don't forget. That way I can do the big orders at once, as you seemed to have done this time  ;D. Nice haul. Isn't it nice to have a set of "standards" and you know you like them and they are dependable and then add new things into the mix to try? I like the comfort of drinking a familiar tea.
    A lot of your gong fu standards have become mine too. I really need to order as I been longing for the milk oolong and theirs is the best I tried and none of the others I tried out over the years are quite the same. I also like the red plum which I got based on your recs. And a couple of others. We been drinking lots of tea with hubby working from home, he's drinking a lot more of course too.

    And we still love our hot water dispenser. Best thing I got. Put away my kettle and only use it now to make tea. Since really, most of what I drink needs boiling or close to boiling anyway. And if I need lower, I pour it in a measuring cup first. But I am more of a black/dark tea person anway.

    Offline Atunah

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7106 on: August 10, 2020, 11:51:50 am »
    So I have tea that just aren't my favorites as far as flavor goes, so they keep sitting on the shelf, while I grab the ones I really like. I have some christmas and fall type teas left and some others that just aren't what I gravitate towards. They are already mixed and flavored so mixing them with other stuff, doesn't really do anything to improve.

    I usually drink my teas all unsweetened and no milk. Same with coffee. But I do like a nice ice coffee sometimes with sugar free flavored syrups and heavy cream. No milk as it has too many carbs.
    I also been making cream sodas with unsweetened flavored sparkle water with a package of truvia and some heavy cream. Its like a threat. So I just tried some of those neglegted teas with a package of truvia and some cream and it actually turned out quite nice. A nice treat and I get to use up those teas.  ;D Having a snowman tea right now like that. Its 100 degrees outside and I am drinking snowman tea.  :-\.

    Got my house painted and I keep yelling at the birds when they drop some number 2 on it and the darn bugs, when they get stuck on there after it gets wet for some reason. Wipe wipe.  ;D. I wish it wasn't so hot and humid, I can't sit outside at all right now. I try to sit out and drink my hot teas. If it wasn't so humid, maybe I could handle it for a bit, but oy. Plus my back patio has no cover and its in full sun from morning to late afternoon. I have a pergola,but it has a slatted roof so still some sun going through. Plus the wood is really rotted and it gets a bit weird walking on it. We are planning to have it fixed, but it will be a big project as the bottom has to be completely redone and changed out. Ouch. Bit by bit. But I can sit there later in the evening. Its still in the 90's even late so not much relief.

    Looking forward to winter already when I'll be outside drinking tea and eating my low carb cookies.

    Offline crebel

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7107 on: August 10, 2020, 12:51:16 pm »
    I'm so glad your house painting was completed!  It might be less expensive to outright replace your pergola if the flooring is rotten, have you checked prices yet?  I've always thought it would be wonderful to have one of those roll-out canvas awnings for our deck as it is in full sun most of the day like your patio.  It is not, however, anywhere near to the top of the list for home improvements that I can work into the budget right now!

    I love the idea of turning your so-so teas into treats with sweetner and cream.  Of course you know I already do that with lots of my teas.  Even really good black teas which I drink regularly with nothing in them can be elevated to treat/dessert level that way.  Try it some time with sticky rice puerh - it turns into drinking warm rice pudding. :)

    Offline Atunah

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7108 on: August 10, 2020, 03:23:12 pm »
    Yeah, we been getting some quotes are are leaning towards either using a cement base so the rot won't happen again. Its sitting on the ground right now. Other option is using that stuff that isn't wood, forgot what its called on the base. We are trying to reuse the large cedar beams. They can be painting. They are on top.

    But all that stuff has to wait until a certain property in Oklahoma is finally sold. Been waiting for that lodestone to be gone for 20 years. I can't think of all the mortgage payment each month for that thing that went in the trash basically. But not mine, so I had no say. We finally have a biter and are getting close. It won't be much, but should cover a pergola redo and some credit card pay off.

    Next on list are windows. Other things that are gonna come up at some point is AC. Hopefully a few more years on that. Oh, and the fence. That really needs to be done sooner than later, but holy moly we have a lot of fence. One side , one on greenbelt I think its 190 feet.  :o And then the backside, 50 feet. Not worried about the other side as we have a double fence there with neighbors. Boards on both sides so it holds up a bit better. If that thing falls in on the greenbelt side, we are a free for all for deers, opossoms, skunks, cats, dogs, coyotes, you name it.  :-X

    Bit at a time. Things are still too uncertain this year to get into too much repairs. But we do need the pergola done. Its the thing we really want to use and enjoy. Since we have to stay home so much.

    Ohhh, sticky rice with cream. No clue why I haven't tried that yet. I shall do that tomorrow.  ;D
    « Last Edit: August 10, 2020, 03:25:16 pm by Atunah »

    Offline Atunah

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7109 on: August 12, 2020, 01:32:29 pm »
    I had to switch to herbal teas today. I got some nice ones from teagschwendner. Ayurveda line. Vata and Kapha are the ones I am drinking. Not feeling good today at all. I feel nauseous and kind of week. Hope its just something I ate or some other bug, cause you know  :-X :o

    Anywho, I started with some fresh grated ginger in hot water and truvia and that did help. Don't want to upset my stomach with caffeine so herbal it is today.
    I am having some sugar free low carb cookies I made.  ;D
    Aren't they pretty?


    Recipe is technically for keto shortbread cookies but works pretty good in the press I just got. Cookie press thingie. I got tired of rolling out the dough.
    So nice with tea in the afternoon though.

    Offline crebel

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7110 on: August 13, 2020, 07:28:39 am »
    Your cookies are beautiful!  I hope you are feeling better today, because  :-X :o

    Offline Atunah

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7111 on: August 13, 2020, 08:06:01 am »
    Thanks, I am better today, still a bit woozy in the innards.  :-X. So I hope it is just some kind of bug of sorts.

    You should have seen the cookies I made before I got the cookie press. They looked, um, interesting.  ;D I don't bake much at all and I don't have patience for fiddly things. So I knew I needed some automated thingie. Growing up my grandma had a thing you screw to the edge of the kitchen table and then turn and spritz cookie strips come out on the end. Those are the cookies we made most often during christmas. So they be strips with ripples and we'd dip the end in choco and then dry. We did the cut out shapes too, but those just were easier to deal with and we kids loved turning the thing. I never looked to see if they make something like that here. The one my grandma had also ground meat. It was that durable and old. Solid heavy metal of sorts.

    Here is the recipe for the dough for anyone that wonders. I use powdered swerve for the sweetener.
    https://mouthwateringmotivation.com/2020/07/08/the-best-keto-shortbread-cookies-recipe/

    Quote
    Keto Shortbread Cookies Recipe
    Serves: ~18 cookies
    Ingredients:
    3/4 cup salted butter, softened
    3/4 cup powdered monkfruit/erythritol sweetener (For this recipe I actually love using 6 tbsp swerve and 2 tbsp truvia as well)
    1 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
    1/4 tsp almond extract
    1 1/2 cups almond flour, 168g
    1/2 cup coconut flour, 56g
    1 tbsp arrowroot starch, 8g (or cornstarch is OK if you don't have it)
    1/2 tsp xanthan gum
    1/8 tsp baking powder
    1/8 tsp salt (1/4 tsp if using unsalted butter)
    Directions:
    Pre-heat oven to 325*F.
    In a large bowl, beat together your butter and sweetener until light and fluffy. Add your extracts and beat once more until combined.
    In another bowl, whisk together all of your dry ingredients including; almond flour, coconut flour, arrowroot starch, xanthan gum and salt.
    Pour the dry ingredients into the wet and stir well until the dough becomes thick and everything is incorporated together.
    Form your dough into a circle and then roll out between two sheets of parchment paper to the thickness you want your cookies (they won't change in much in the oven).
    Using a sharp knife or pizza cutter, cut the edges of the dough to form an even rectangle then cut smaller rectangles from the large one. (I cut my rectangles about 2 1/2 inches in length and 1 1/4 inches in width).
    Re-roll any dough scraps and repeat the process until all of the dough is used up. Place the formed rectangles on parchment-lined baking sheets and gently poke holes twice in each shortbread cookie using a fork.
    Bake the cookies for 10-12min or until they are just very lightly browned around the edges.
    Cool the cookies completely on their baking sheets before attempting to lift them. Enjoy The Best Keto Shortbread Cookies!
    \You can store these on the counter in an airtight container between layers of wax or parchment paper for up to 5 days OR place them in the freezer to keep them longer*.*

    Calories: 140kcal | Carbohydrates: 1.5g | Protein: 2.4g | Fat: 13.4g | Fiber: 2.1g (Per cookie)

    With the press it made about 37 cookies so the carbs and such are for 2 cookies in my case. Since original recipe is listed for 18 as its technically shortbread cookie dough.


    Offline Betty Blast

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7112 on: August 15, 2020, 11:54:11 am »
    Those cookies look tasty! Thanks for sharing the recipe. I have fall on the mind. Does anyone have favorite fall tea recommendations?

    Offline crebel

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7113 on: August 16, 2020, 09:07:48 am »
    My tea choices and consumption don't really change much between seasons, but I probably make various chai teas more often in the fall and winter.

    Offline Andra

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7114 on: August 17, 2020, 09:23:23 am »
    The last order I placed from Mighty Leaf in Canada for my Brazilian Fruit black tea included some of their Berry Hibiscus in gallon-sized tea bags.  I tried one on Friday and the bag tore as soon as the water hit it.  So I had to strain my tea into something else.  The second time I put the tea bag in the infuser insert for the pitcher.  That worked well - but of course, that bag didn't break.  Mighty Leaf is sending me a few more bags to make up for the defective one I received.
    In Texas I drink iced tea pretty much year-round.  I don't start thinking about fall and hot teas until we get a cold front.

    Offline Atunah

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7115 on: August 18, 2020, 09:12:50 am »
    Those cookies look tasty! Thanks for sharing the recipe. I have fall on the mind. Does anyone have favorite fall tea recommendations?
    I usually start restocking the fall teas and holiday teas starting in late fall. Its because I order those from teagschwendner and they are only available seasonally. Last year I started with some pumkin chai, autumn spice, hazelnut chocolate and cinnamon plum rooibus. All really great. Later I get all the winter type teas, xmas, sencha klaus, snowman. I might narrow it down a bit though next year as I had a wee bit too much.


    I drink them all year round though and hot. In Texas.  ;D

    Offline Betty Blast

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7116 on: August 22, 2020, 11:03:46 am »
    Chai tea is one my favorite drinks, but I can never get it to taste as good at home as in a coffee shop. With the virus it's a good time to experiment making it at home again.  I love Mighty Leaf tea, and hibiscus is one of my favorites. I've never tried Brazilian Fruit tea, I'll have to add it to my list. Wow, Atunah, that's a long list of holiday teas. I'll definitely have to add some of these to my list, hazelnut chocolate sounds intriguing. Thanks for the recommendations everyone. 

    Offline Atunah

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7117 on: August 22, 2020, 11:42:40 am »
    The hazelnut choco is really good. And comforting. I like it any time, but it does taste really nice on a rainy day, or in fall when the weather turns cooler. Elsewhere, as here its still hot as hades in fall. So I pretend its cool and rainy  ;D
    It uses roasted oolong as a base, which works great with the nut and choco flavor. I call it Nutella Tea. I think some reviewers called it that too. Can't officially call it that though of course on the Teagschwendner site. I like warm, creamy, spicy, chocolatey, herbaly teas over overly fruity/floral ones. When it comes to flavored ones. I drink a lot of non flavored teas in general.

    I never had chai at a place. I wouldn't even know where to got to get it. Haven't been to a coffee shop in some time as I moved to the other side of town and haven't found a new one yet. Outside of the starbucks of course. I haven't been in one of those in many years. How do they make it at the shops? Like a latte just with tea?

    Offline crebel

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7118 on: August 22, 2020, 01:00:11 pm »
    I used to be pretty addicted to Starbucks Chai lattes - hot or cold. I always ordered lattes, but I think you can get "Oprah Chai" just tea. They use a concentrated chai syrup (more concentrated than the Tazo or Oregon boxed concentrates).  Very sweet, very creamy.  It can be a huge calorie count.

    My order was always (for hot) 7-pumps (6 is the norm), soy, no water (otherwise they dilute the concentrate with hot water before adding hot frothed milk).  Of course you don't have to say "no water" when you ordered iced chai.  The soy milk (vanilla) makes a BIG difference in yumminess over any other milk choices, IMO.

    I am unable to recreate the taste of their concentrate at home - My perception is it's heavy on peppercorns, nice hit of cardamom and ginger, a little anise, a little clove, and not much cinnamon.  Any other shop where I've ordered a chai latte is a powdered mix which I am not fond of.

    There was a time when we were all trying the various Ahmad chai looseleaf blends.  I wasn't thrilled by any of them either, they all seemed heavy toward clove and cinnamon to me.  The tumeric blend was the most interesting, I thought, but I added extra Assam tea after the first time I made it - not enough "tea" taste.  Picky, aren't I?   :P

    Offline Atunah

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7119 on: August 22, 2020, 01:07:56 pm »
    Picky is our middle name. We hunt until we find the best of each different teas. Hence the large tea shelf I still have.  :-X

    I don't think I have ever had any Ahmad teas. Don't remember hearing about them. But this thread is long and my brain  keeps getting older  ;D

    There are huge variations in chai blends. Both cinnamon and clove can overpower any mix they are in. Especially cinnamon.
    I have made the traditional way before where you seep in a pan at the stove for certain time. I don't drink milk though, most of it is high in carb and when I buy the more filtered one with half carbs, I usually never finish. I wonder how many carbs soy milk has. I might try it with that. Using the chai teas I already have and making it on the stove. I'd add my own sweetener in in that case for the less carbs of course.

    Offline crebel

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7120 on: August 22, 2020, 05:41:20 pm »
    You have no idea how far back or how long I have searched through this thread for the Ahmad tea discussion ...

    I am an idiot, had to go look at a bag of chai I still have in the cupboard and it is Vahdam chai teas several of us were trying at one time and we were talking clear back in 2018. 

    Vahdam/Ahmad - close, right?  ::) :P

    Offline mlewis78

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7121 on: August 23, 2020, 12:57:25 am »
    Atunah, I want to try the chocolate hazelnut tea (decaf). I see some in the Stash brand. I use teabags. Would the Stash brand of it be good? I have not been drinking hot tea all summer. I want to get back to drinking herbal teas late at night to make me stop the eating of ginger chews and Werther's caramel candy. Something that tells me "it's time to stop eating and sucking on candy." (Even though I could manage to do both the candy and tea at the same time).

    I also see Republic of Tea in Red Velvet Cuppa Chocolate (no hazelnut):
    https://smile.amazon.com/REPUBLIC-TEA-Red-Velvet-Chocolate/dp/B01FRB0KO2/ref=sr_1_17?dchild=1&keywords=chocolate+hazelnut+tea&qid=1598169476&s=grocery&sr=1-17
    « Last Edit: August 23, 2020, 01:01:55 am by mlewis78 »
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    Offline Atunah

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7122 on: August 23, 2020, 10:57:39 am »
    You have no idea how far back or how long I have searched through this thread for the Ahmad tea discussion ...

    I am an idiot, had to go look at a bag of chai I still have in the cupboard and it is Vahdam chai teas several of us were trying at one time and we were talking clear back in 2018. 

    Vahdam/Ahmad - close, right?  ::) :P
    Ah yes, I tried most of Vahdam chais. They are good, but I stopped ordering from them. The last few orders the teas were very dusty and didn't taste as good. The mixes also looked different, some didn't have as much in or in another case it was most all spice and no actual tea in it. Their prices have gone up a bit too. I already have enough places to order teas though. Maybe I'll try them again down the line.

    Atunah, I want to try the chocolate hazelnut tea (decaf). I see some in the Stash brand. I use teabags. Would the Stash brand of it be good? I have not been drinking hot tea all summer. I want to get back to drinking herbal teas late at night to make me stop the eating of ginger chews and Werther's caramel candy. Something that tells me "it's time to stop eating and sucking on candy." (Even though I could manage to do both the candy and tea at the same time).

    I also see Republic of Tea in Red Velvet Cuppa Chocolate (no hazelnut):
    https://smile.amazon.com/REPUBLIC-TEA-Red-Velvet-Chocolate/dp/B01FRB0KO2/ref=sr_1_17?dchild=1&keywords=chocolate+hazelnut+tea&qid=1598169476&s=grocery&sr=1-17
    I only had the sticky rice from Stash tea and they don't carry that one anymore. Crebel used to order that too from Stash. I think that is how I was willing to try their version. Don't know why they stopped carrying it. I am looking at their hazelnut chocolate and it uses black tea as the base. I mean it sounds good, but can't say of course. Their ingredients are Decaffeinated black tea, natural chocolate flavor, natural hazelnut flavor, vanilla extract

    The Teagschwendner one has Ingredients: Tea blend, hazelnut brittle (sugar, hazelnuts), bits of cocoa, cocoa shells, flavor, cinnamon, vanilla bits.

    So the TG has actual brittle in it and pieces of the coco and things, rather than just flavor. But as long as it tastes good that is what matters. But I do like getting most of my flavored tea for that reason from TG. They often use good ingredients and actual bits. Gong-fu also has high quality flavored from the ones I got from them. Adagio for example I find hit or miss with flavored teas. Vahdam of course uses actual spices in their blends, but its mostly chai leaning.

    I am trying to think of other tea stores I have ordered from. Fussy allergy brain today. Ah, Harney's, have ordered from them in the past. But not in recent times.

    Werthers, I remember those sitting with my sister and having tea  ;D. Way back when, in a land far far away.

    Offline Andra

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7123 on: August 23, 2020, 03:55:49 pm »
    I still use tea bags for travel (well, not this year!). Stash is decent. I like several Harney's, some Republic of Tea, and my favorite herbal at the moment - Mighty Leaf.

    Offline CatherineM

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    Re: The Tea Thread
    « Reply #7124 on: August 27, 2020, 10:24:20 pm »
    Teabags don't do it for me.

    I do old Hall teapot brewing with loose leaf tea leaves. That's all I want
    to drink. Teabags make me think of what they swept up off the
    floor when they were done getting the real stuff.

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