Saturday, August 31, 2013

Earl Grey Lavender by Revolution

Tealights and tea... a wonderful combination!

Seller Description: Revolution Tea's award-winning Earl Grey Lavender adds a unique twist to a popular favorite. Ceylon, Oolong and Darjeeling estate tea leaves are lightly flavored with Oil of Bergamot and combined with super blue lavender to create a wonderful, sweet tea. Enjoy Earl Grey Lavender as a morning pick-me-up or as a late afternoon treat.
Website: Earl Grey Lavender by Revolution
Sample source: Provided

A sachet of Earl Grey Lavender
Teaware: Noritake "Sterling Tide" teacup, 7oz capacity
Measured dry: 1 sachet
Water Temperature: Boiling
Steeping Time: 3 minutes
Additives: 2 teaspoons of raw sugar

Despite the caffeine I knew was loaded in every sip, I couldn't resist steeping a cup (or two!) of this tonight. We just finished our first week back with students, so I needed a little cup of calm... and the warmth of the tea was also a much-needed balm to my throat. The first week back always does a number on my vocal chords after a summer of casual conversation. I lit a couple tea lights and settled back to sooth and enjoy... or loaf and invite, if you've ever had Kim Campbell as a professor! One of her favorite poetry activities is - even now that she's teaching teachers and not middle school students - to have those in her charge physically interpret the line from Walt Whitman's "Song of Myself."

The contents of the sachet
Now the business of interpreting "I loafe and invite my soul" is usually fraught with reflection, meditation, or any number of things that speak to you as an individual. For me, it's calm and quiet and often best done in starlight.

I am so glad that I steeped up a cup of this tea, because it was the perfect counterpoint. Dry, it smells nearly entirely of lavender, and fresh lavender at that. No sour perfumey notes, just the serenity of a lovely fragrance, and I think that was the clincher this evening.

The box indicated a 3-4 minute steep time, and lately erring on the side of caution has been working well for me. There is a surprisingly good balance between the traditional Earl Grey flavor profile and the lavender. The black tea and bergamot slide to the front, while the lavender dances lightly in the background. Often I will encounter teas which are skewed one way or another, but this one actually lives up to its promise.

The infused leaves
I did open one of the sachets, and I was impressed with the beauty of the tea it contained. There is a world of difference between the fannings of a tea bag and the unbroken leaves of a sachet like this.

But the elephant in the room is the nylon sachet, which does give you the experience and quality of a loose leaf tea with the convenience of a tea bag. I hope in the future that Revolution will embrace biodegradable sachet material, or offer their teas as loose leaf. It is truly the only thing keeping me from completely enjoying this wonderful tea.

It is pretty unusual for me to enjoy a cup of Earl Grey at night, but since this is so much more soothing than brisk I just couldn't let my fingers walk past it to more nighttime-friendly teas.

Prominent Notes: Black tea blend and bergamot oil
Aftertaste: Fresh Lavender
Overall: A surprisingly tasty tea

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