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I have long considered myself a gourmet, and considered a big part of my life's work to be experiencing every taste sensation that I can. I love tasting fine wines, breads, cheeses, roasts of coffee, and exquisite dishes from around the world. I have actually taken entire vacations simply to taste a region's cuisine. One area where I had not explored sufficiently until recently, however, was spiced tea. I did not know it, but there was a whole world of sensation that was continuing to elude me while I was drinking my simple Earl Grey for breakfast.
When most people think about spiced tea, they actually think about spiced chai tea, but few people really understand the full potential of this drink. It might seem strange to you, but although I bought some rather expensive food, I still drank my tea brewed from the tea bags you get from the grocery store until a few months ago. I was bored to tears by spiced teas – and most other teas for that matter – and never explored the possibilities. Then one of my friends brewed me a cup of gourmet chai spiced tea. I was literally blown away!
It was like nothing I had ever tasted before. It was a little bit peppery, but also had a vague cleansing ginger aroma to it. It was warm and sweet, but also hard to sharp. In short, it was complex – more complex, in fact, than some of the finest wines that I have yet taste it. I knew that there was something to this. I had to delve into spiced teas more deeply.
What most spiced tea fans fail to realize is that tea itself is unlimited. There are only so many things, of course, you can do with tea leaves, but once you move into the realm of herbal tea, you can brew almost anything. I have an almost encyclopedic knowledge of spice names and herbal lore, and soon I was adding anything and everything to hot water to create the perfect spiced tea sensations. I would mix my concoctions both with and without tea leaves, and achieve some fantastic results. Not to brag, but I was off once offered a hundred dollars for one of my tea recipes. Needless to say, I declined the offer. The ironic thing is that I would have given it away for free, but seeing how much people treasured my secrets, I decided to keep them secret.
Miniature Tea Set
Sun Tea Jar
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