Teavana has a lot of different varieties, but since you're used to tea from China,Teavana to you would probably be the McDonalds of tea brands.
About forty years ago I tried (and failed) to explain varietal black tea to people who had no idea what I was talking about. Most of the time I drink loose English Breakfast (as an English friend said, "tea should not be wrapped in toilet paper). But there are a number of others I like, Keemun comes to mind immediately. I use sugar but not milk.
Lipton is bland, rather like American beer after you've learned to like German beer.
A good black tea needs honey & milk!
I love a good tea. My parents have an amazing tearoom near them and I have some of the most delicious loose teas. There is nothing like a glorious, aromatic tea made with a proper infuser. I prefer varietal black teas as opposed to herbals. With sugar mostly but there is a particular tea prepared for the holiday season that is perfection with milk.
Oh btw...my late husband spent some time in China right before we got married and remarked on the quality and prolific nature of tea drinking. I only drink green tea with my Chinese. No sugar.
Hortensia, reading your post made me crave for tea. You write in such an engaging tone. : )
Back to the topic, I like tea and have lots of tea leaves, flavored teas, milk teas lying around at home but I'm just too lazy to prepare a drink.
My Chinese friends would always tell me to drink tea after each meal as it helps in digestion and losing weight. I think it really works for them because they never get fat although most of their food is oily..
Shirley, I looked up teavana -- what a big assortment of tea! They have the tea pearls like the ones I liked in China.
jgnat -- I bought some tea in china a long time ago that was called blooming tea. It was some kind of a nut-shaped thing, when it steeped in hot water it would open and an odd flower would be revealed. The doctors at the hospital where we trained told me it was for soothing a singer's throat before a performance. It didn't really have much of a taste but it was good for a sore throat.
Suraj Khan -- I had to look up bubble milk tea. We had some canned drinks somewhere that had those bubbles -- large balls of tapioca. A bit weird for me.
I'm on my second cup of Chamomile. I like Ginger tea. I usually have a root of Ginger in the freezer and I use a microplane to grate it really fine and pour boiling water on it, drink it that way with a little honey. Teavana tea employees are a pushy lot. I like the Youthberry tea. I'll buy some if they have it on sale the day after Xmas. Outrageous prices make me skeptical. I'm going to look for the Punjana. I had a supply of Chinese tea too, all gone now. Never tried the Indian Lipton. I didn't know it's origin.
Thank you for this thread, Hortensia!
I just made some tea to drink while I shared some thoughts. A friend came to Australia from Nanjing,
earlier this year, and he brought this as a gift. And I'm drinking it from my favourite cup, made from
da hong pao (hong=red) clay, in the famous yixing pottery works, inscribed on the side with a poem
about the river in Suzhou in Chinese characters.
Its quite beautiful - mei (may) which is the meaning of this character:
the color is reddish as in this teapot:
I bought it in the Suzhou museum shop, while on my last visit. It wan't cheap
but I fell in love with it when I saw it. Over years of use, the cup absorbs the
flavour of the tea.
When I drink from it, some wonderful memories come back to my mind.
The tea itself, Huangshan Maofeng tea, comes from near the Yellow mountain,
in Anhui Province.
The most famous of all of the Mao Feng Teas, Huangshan Mao Feng Tea has been produced since the mid Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). The tea is produced in Anhui Province near Huangshan (Yellow) Mountain. The mountain is truly one of the most spectacular places on earth. It is said that after visiting Huangshan Mountain, there is no point in visiting any other mountain. This combined with the wonderful Huangshan Mao Feng Tea make this a fantastic destination. The literal English translation for Mao Feng is Fur, or Hair Peak. The name derives from the small white hairs which cover the leaves, and the shape of the leaves, which resemble a mountain's peak. The best tea is picked in the early spring, before the Qing Ming Festival. The tea farmers pick only the bud and one leaf next to the bud. In Chinese it is said that the leaves resemble orchid buds which are just opening. The leaves of Maofeng tea have a light yellow color. Its liquid has a tint of apricot yellow. The teas fragrance and aroma are long lasting and the leaves can be brewed five or six times.
There's a legend attached to the tea:
According to legend, it was said that during the Ming Dynasty a young scholar fell and a beautiful women fell in. A local wealthy landowner saw the woman working in the fields and wanted her for himself. The land owner had much money and power and forced the girl's parents to make their daughter marry him. On the night before the wedding, the young woman escaped and snuck back to the house of the young scholar only to find that he had been killed by the landowner's cronies. She went to his grave and cried uncontrollably until she became the rain. The scholar's body became a tea tree. It is said that this is why the area where Huangshan Mao Feng Tea is grown is always moist and humid and that the tea trees are lush all year round.
I did Yum Cha with a very wealthy Chinese jw (in HK) who very kindly explained tea in Chinese culture. He said there were approx 300 different teas, all with medicinal properties. As we ate we were continuously given Jasmine tea. Actually you have to tap the top of your teapot when it is empty, as it is too noisey to get the attention of the wait staff! He told me the reason for this particular tea. It aids in digestion but most importantly, assists in getting rid of fats, so if a dish was a little greasy, I drank the tea. Yes it worked very well and very quickly.