Saturday, January 16, 2010

My New Teapot and Favorite Tea Spot

I rarely drink coffee, only if I get really groggy in the afternoon at work, which isn't all that rare, because I'm a night owl who has to get up about 4:50 to get to work by 6:00 am. So out of necessity I will drink coffee, but I am a tea lover. Not that stuff you get from the grocery store in bags that is probably scraped off the floor after the manufacturing process and tastes like, well, tea bag. I have bought half a dozen boxes of this stuff  when we travel, use one or two bags, then the remainder sits in the cupboard, rejected. I like loose teas and my fave spot to buy them is Treasures and Teas-102 5th Ave S. in Edmonds, WA.
For Christmas, Ron bought me this Primula tea pot and some Primula Green Tea with Jasmine "flowers". I've always used a metal mesh tea ball or tea infuser; this one is made of glass. The difference is immediately noticeable, using glass instead of metal, and far better.
Check Primula website for products. Another benefit of the glass infuser is that the tea can be made in the microwave, although I choose water boiled on the stove. Did you know you should boil the water (but do not overboil, as this depletes oxygen from the water), remove it from the heat for 30-60 seconds before adding to the teapot.Boiling water can burn the tea leaves and give tea a bitter taste.
According to the package, this tea is grown in the Fujian province in southeast China and hand-sewn into flowers by artisans there. When steaming hot water is poured over them, they open up into lovely flowers and produce a fragrant, tasty amber colored tea. Heavenly! Each tea flower can be used 2-3 times.

Back to the tea shop: I love their selection, rows of jars that you can open and take a sniff, and Carla, the owner, is friendly and knowledgeable and often gives me a couple samples with my purchase. She was delighted to know I was writing about the shop in my blog! My favorite teas are Market Spice (made popular as Pike Place Market Spice), Misty Thursday, Midnight in Missoula, and just so they don't all begin with M, Sassafrass, a very sassy citrus-licorice flavored tea.

They have a marvelous selection of traditional and quirky teapots. I have this kitty-cat one in lime green. I nearly bought a less whimsical one, but my best friend advised me to buy one that would put a smile on my face in the mornings! This hand-carved dragon teapot is made of stone, and quite heavy. Carla said its price would be around $500.00. I don't believe I'll be the one who owns it...


Anonymous said...

There is nothing like the discovery and exploration of a new tea shop!

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