Monday, June 18, 2012

On Tea

My illusrious tea collection
and beloved red teapot.
I spend a lot of time in front of my computer these days, clacking away at my Masters thesis and my spine seems to curve in on itself because of the cold.  As soon as I have wrapped my fingers around a solid mug full of steaming tea, however, everything warms up and I feel cheered, comforted and energised, all at the same time.  The trick is to have a lot of flavours.  Here are some of my favourites (in no particular order: picking a favourite tea?  As my friend Karl once said, it would be like choosing a favourite child!)
1.)    Woolworths’ Green Tea.  Green tea is not everyone’s, well, cup of tea (I walked straight into that one).  It has a distinctly bitter, green taste.  I quite like it however, and until very recently, the Woolworths brand has been the cheapest.  I like to make a pot with two tea bags and I can get four cups of strong tea out of it.  Perfect for a morning when to get up out of your chair to make another cup is to lose your train of thought.

2.)    Twinings’ flavoured Green Tea(s).  I have never seen this in South Africa (so maybe it is a little unfair of me to write about it) but if you ever go to England or even if the most distant friend or relation is going, ask them to bring back some flavoured green tea.  Twinings is ridiculously expensive over here (for my student budget at any rate) but in England it is a very cheap and light gift to buy.  The green teas I tasted were flavoured with pear or cranberry or grapefruit flavours which may sound quite strange but are just perfect to take the bitter edge from your brew as well as add some subtle sweetness.

3.)    Freshpack Rooibos with added Ginsing.  I am not sure if I believe the hype about ginsing being good for energy, but what they don’t tell you on the tin is that this tea has strawberry granules in it, which makes a sweet rooibos flavour that little bit more sweetly fruity.  Delicious!

4.)    Laager Green Rooibos, Citrus and Ginger: This tea is something magical, not least because its aroma fills your cupboard with its invigorating smell.  It is very more-ish, so be prepared to return for another cup.

5.)    Five Roses Orange-flavoured Tea:  Another more-ish tea is this Ceylon tea with a hint of orange flavour.  My friends who usually have sugar in their tea go without when drinking this one, as the flavour also removes that edge without removing the comforting strength of good old traditional tea.  There is also a lemon version of this tea which only really comes into its own when a dash of honey is added.

6.)    Eve’s Honey and Ginger Tea (Extra-Strong): I am not sure this is strictly a tea, as it comes in box containing little sealed packets full of yellow granules that make your throat burn with ginger.  Only suitable for those ginger nuts out there...

7.)    Skimmelberg Buchu Tea: This is supposed to be a natural remedy of the San for a whole host of problems from constipation to cystitis.  Whatever it actually does, I really love having it first thing in the morning as it makes my insides feel refreshed somehow.  It’s difficult to describe the taste.  I suppose you just have to experience it for yourself...

8.)    Holotropic Pukka Chai: Again, I am not sure this is strictly a tea as it is pretty much some chai spices, milk powder and sugar but it is richly delicious.  I recently gave up all cocoa products that are not fair trade and this is an excellent substitute for Hot Chocolate or Milo.

And remember...


  1. "[Your] friend Karl"? It must be another one. I can't imagine having made a pseudo-affectionate comment about short people :)

    1. I actually asked you whether you were more a chips person or a chocolate person and that was your reply :D So just an analogy, no refernce to, ah, "short people"...