Tuesday, August 14, 2012

TEA FOR TWOsday - EARL GREY CHALLENGE (Round 1)

TEA JOURNAL - Compliments of this weekend's trip to DAVIDsTEA on Bleecker and a fantastically strong craving for some Earl Grey tea, I have put these two deliciously different beauties up against one another in Round 1 of the Earl Grey Challenge.  One's a Green and one's a Black, but both are absolutely delicious blends that were chosen by scent alone to compete here this week.  Are you ready to meet the competitors?


ORGANIC COUNTESS OF SEVILLE (GREEN)
In this corner, steeping for 4-7 minutes at a mere 186 degrees, we have an organic green tea from the zhejiang province made with organic orange peel, organic bergamot oil, organic cornflowers, and orange oil... requiring 1 1/2 teaspoons per cup (minimum) for best flavor.  This tea has a cool aroma filled with the strong scent of the bergamot and orange oils while still holding true to that familiar green tea scent.  The scent of the oil is strong and a little sharp on the nostrils if you breathe in too deeply, but is light and cleanly orange once finished steeping.  The flavor is playful and warm and works out served warm as well as served as an iced tea.  For consistent tasting purposes, this tea has been served chilled.

ORGANIC CREAM OF EARL GREY (BLACK)
And in this corner, steeping a mere 4-6 minutes at a temperature of 208 degrees, we have a strong and full black tea, decorated tastefully with cornflowers, vanilla, bergamot oil, and other natural flavorings that will remain a mystery to us all.  With a warm, full aroma, calming and sweet, this little underdog smells like a french buttercream Yankee Candle... and if you breathe in more deeply, almost has a licorice smell... a black licorice smell with a hint of vanilla running through it... it is indeed, a creamy aroma.  This tea is multidimensional and offers layer upon layer of delicious aroma to take in the longer you inhale.  Coming into this competition with the help of some Kirkland Vanilla Soy Milk added into the mix, this flavor is so tremendous and shapely that it will have you smiling from ear to ear.  A very tough contender indeed!  This tea has also been served cold for consistent tasting purposes.

THE CHALLENGE...
 Offering a tasting of each to my coworkers, I have pitted these two contenders against one another in a battle of chilled awesomeness.  Amazingly enough, the results thus far have been split 50/50... but I am hoping for a tie breaker later today so that I can announce a winner to advance to the next round of the Earl Grey Challenge!

PARTICIPATE!
Okay, readers... I'm counting on YOU to help out on this challenge, too!  These two teas cost less than $7 total for an ounce of each (and can be purchased in even smaller quantities than that!) and will both prove to be wonderful additions to your tea collection... so order some online or drop by a location and try these two out for yourselves, then STOP BACK HERE and cast your vote to see your favorite advance!  Voting will end NEXT TUESDAY so you have plenty of time to participate!

TEACUPS & TASTEBUDS READY?  THEN MAY THE CHALLENGE BEGIN!!!

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