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Recommend me some tea!

EclecticGrooveEclecticGroove Registered User regular
edited May 2009 in Help / Advice Forum
Since "tea" is too short to use to search here.. can't really do much with it.

I picked up some Stash green tea at the store to try.. and while it's not horrible, it's certainly nothing special.

I'd really like a nice green tea with good flavor to drink hot without adding anything too it.

If there's other suggestions for a good tea to try (other than green) please feel free.

EclecticGroove on

Posts

  • TL DRTL DR Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    What are you looking for? Yerba mate is my go-to hot beverage now, but I'm in it primarily for the psychoactive chemicals. Doesn't taste bad though. Earthy.

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  • JasconiusJasconius sword criminal Flo-ridaRegistered User regular
    edited May 2009
    I like Darjeeling, and if you get a good brand it is very drinkable without sugar, etc. It's one of the first teas I discovered that I actually preferred to drink without sugar.

    I don't have a brand recommendation, at the moment, however.

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  • supabeastsupabeast Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Find a Chinese/Asian market/grocer and buy it by the pound. Chrysanthemum is great. For a nice cheap black tea I like Sea Dyke brand.

  • CorvusCorvus Caw? VancouverRegistered User regular
    edited May 2009
    A few things. Loose leaf is better than bags, but bags are more convenient/quicker. I use bags when I'm in a rush or at work. If I have more time, loose leaf is the way to go.

    I don't drink coffee, but Tetley Orange Pekoe is my standard hot mug of caffeine. Twinning's Earl Grey is also good, and available in loose leaf in tins. Try some chai. Stash makes a double-spiced chai that I like. For green teas, you might want to try hitting up your local asian grocery stores, if you have any.

    Also, many people seem to have the misconception that green tea does not have caffeine. This is not the case, at all.

    Just something to keep in mind!

  • zilozilo Registered User
    edited May 2009
    Seconding Twinings Earl Grey. You can get loose leaves in 100g, 200g, or 500g tins from their website.

    Also every time you make a cup you get to say "Tea. Earl Grey. Hot."

  • xeviqxeviq Registered User
    edited May 2009
    Stash is meh.
    Tazo bags are pretty good.

    S'all I got

  • NightDragonNightDragon Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    supabeast wrote: »
    Find a Chinese/Asian market/grocer and buy it by the pound. Chrysanthemum is great. For a nice cheap black tea I like Sea Dyke brand.

    Yes, Chrysanthemum is quite tasty. Personally, I'm also a fan of Lipton's Mint Green tea, and I find it's quite enjoyable without any sugar.

    I'm not sure if you're anywhere near any of their stores, but Ten Ren has some really tasty teas. Whenever I visit NYC I stop by their shop in Chinatown and pick some up.

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  • Forbe!Forbe! Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    For one of my favorite herbal teas, and one that is great to drink with a sore throat is licorice/fennel tea.

    Traditional medicinals makes one called 'Throat Coat' and it is amazing. Naturally sweet, with a wonderful lingering aftertaste/aroma.

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  • KakodaimonosKakodaimonos Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    What didn't you like about the Stash green tea? Flavorwise, that is?

    If you found a little too grassy, you might like an oolong, which is a type of tea that's kinda in between a green tea and a black tea. It's not as raw as the green teas, but it isn't as heavy as the black teas.

    Just getting the bagged stuff from the grocery store is going to get you fair to middling quality at best. Finding an actual tea shop that has it loose is the way to get some good quality tea. You can also tell by smelling the tea leaves. They should have a fairly fragrant aroma, with green tea having the faintest aroma, even before you steep them in the water. If they don't smell, that means the tea is rather old.

    I like Upton Tea if you're looking for an online shop. They mainly specialize in Indian teas, so more blacks and Darjeelings. http://www.uptontea.com/shopcart/home.asp

    Or if you are really interested in Japanese green tea: http://www.zencha.net/

  • Judge-ZJudge-Z Teacher, for Great Justice Upstate NYRegistered User regular
    edited May 2009
    I buy all my tea from Adagio. The price is pretty good, they have a ton of great flavors, and even a tea kettle that gets the water to just the right temperature for whatever type of tea you are drinking (most people use water that's too hot for green tea, for example, which makes it more bitter). The fruit infused stuff - which has actual chunks of freeze-dried fruit - is also really, really good iced. Has helped me cut down on my sugar intake big time. The 8 ounce tins last forever, and keep the tea fresh. They're reusable as food canisters as well.

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  • CorvusCorvus Caw? VancouverRegistered User regular
    edited May 2009
    One other thing, I find cream in tea is awful, use milk instead. And I much prefer a small amount of honey to sugar.

  • The_Glad_HatterThe_Glad_Hatter Rogue Jpeg Jockey Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Forbe! wrote: »
    Traditional medicinals makes one called 'Throat Coat' and it is amazing

    :winky:

    also; third'ing Twinnings ear grey. The bags are descent, and but the loose tea is amazing. For me, that was the first non-standard-black tea that i really started appreciating as having a deeper taste.

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  • eric.eric. __BANNED USERS
    edited May 2009
    What are you looking for? Yerba mate is my go-to hot beverage now, but I'm in it primarily for the psychoactive chemicals. Doesn't taste bad though. Earthy.

    whats it do

  • EWomEWom Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    If there is a "Good Food Store" in your town go there. They have a loose tea section in their bulk food section (where you get gronala and flour that isn't packaged etc.) and buy that shit. Loose tea is amazingly different then packaged tea in my experience. Make sure you buy a good teaball to hold it though too, I prefer the mesh wire looking ones to the regular egg-shape with holes, as lots of teas have particles too small to stay contained in that egg type one.

    When you see the prices you're heart will probably stop. It's not hard to find a good green tea there that goes for $45 per pound. But don't worry, unless you smoke a lot of weed, and know this kind of shit, you can load a baggy full and it's like, $2.00. Dried loose leaves, as it turns out, don't weigh a lot. In fact I don't even think they can fit a pound of the stuff in the glass containers they use to keep it in.

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  • JansonJanson Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Judge-Z wrote: »
    I buy all my tea from Adagio. The price is pretty good, they have a ton of great flavors, and even a tea kettle that gets the water to just the right temperature for whatever type of tea you are drinking (most people use water that's too hot for green tea, for example, which makes it more bitter). The fruit infused stuff - which has actual chunks of freeze-dried fruit - is also really, really good iced. Has helped me cut down on my sugar intake big time. The 8 ounce tins last forever, and keep the tea fresh. They're reusable as food canisters as well.

    We have an adagio kettle, and it really is pretty good for getting the correct temperature.

    I also really like several of their teas, particularly the ginger peach black tea and white monkey if you want a very mild and non-bitter green tea that won't keep you up before bed. But get a few samplers - they're very cheap and they seem to last forever!

    http://www.teavana.com is also worth checking out; they have some very sweet but tasty mate teas and they have good suggestions for teas to mix. The best I've found so far is http://www.redblossomtea.com/ - their blossoming jasmine tea smells lovely and they also stock chrysanthemum.

    I've moved from using teabags to using loose tea exclusively; in addition to the better flavour it's nice to control the quantity you use, and using a little tea-ball isn't such a big deal.

    I'd also get used to drinking tea without milk or sugar, if you do so. It'll be healthier and, really, for loose-leaf teas it simply isn't needed.

    EDIT: Seriously, get samplers, at least then you'll get a feel for the variety of tea you like; and then you can try similar varieties from different stores.

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  • CycloneRangerCycloneRanger Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    As has been said, get loose tea, not the stuff in bags. It's cheaper for a given quality of tea. I like Earl Grey and Darjeeling. Oolong tea is... different. Sometimes it's great, sometimes it's not. I don't buy the fruity stuff; if it contains anything other than tea leaves and maybe oil of bergamot (which is what makes Earl Grey different from ordinary black tea), I'll pass.

    For green tea, I usually buy whatever gunpowder blend my local tea shop carries. "Gunpowder" in this case doesn't refer to a location or particular type of green tea, but to tea leaves that have been rolled into little balls. It costs about $4.25 for a quarter of a pound here; certainly much cheaper than coffee. There are all kinds of wacky and expensive green teas out there, though, and you can drop as much as you like there.

    Also, I don't add sugar unless I'm making iced tea (iced gunpowder tea with fresh mint and sugar is nice in the summer) or I fuck up and leave the tea steeping for half an hour or something. You may like it, though. Some people also put milk in their black tea, but I find that unpleasant.

    [Edit: Actually, Wikipedia does seem to indicate that "Gunpowder Tea" refers to a specific province in China. I'm not sure all the stuff that's sold as such is really from that province, though, nor do I think it really matters. As far as I can tell it's usually used to describe a processing technique.]

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  • Rhan9Rhan9 Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    I've yet to taste a genuinely good(IMO) green tea. At best, they're "meh" as far as flavor goes. I don't have much experience with them though, so I'll leave green tea recommendations to someone else.

    Jasmine teas tend to be delicious, as long as they're not the crappiest you can find.

    Chai is excellent, and you can make your own blend, although it's quite work intensive to brew, so buying ready blends should work out. Made well, Chai is absolutely delicious.

    Good quality white tea tends to be somewhat costly, but it's totally worth it. The taste is quite mild, but usually very delicious.

    One particular type that you might want to try is rooibos. Technically, it's not tea, but neither is yerba maté, so there you go. Rooibos tastes very good, and the flavor is quite soft. It's also difficult to mess up, as you can't really steep it too long and make it annoyingly bitter as with most teas. It also contains no caffeine, so you can drink it before going to sleep if that's an issue, and it's absolutely brilliant for your body, as it contains a load of minerals, vitamins and all that hippie shit.

    Overall, speciality tea shops are your best bet.

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  • taliosfalcontaliosfalcon Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    My absolute favorite green tea is japanese gyokuro, first flush sencha comes in a close second.

    As for chinese green tea (which is what most people think of when they think green tea, although japanese is much better imho :P) dragonwell is the best you can get imo, but it can be a bit pricey. gunpowder like cyclone mentioned and chun mee make great daily drinks thought, very good taste for their price.

    Like many people have mentioned, loose leaf is the only way to go, and never, EVER add anything to green tea D:

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  • HypatiaHypatia Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    I'm a big fan of jasmine, especially if you get the higher quality stuff.

  • TL DRTL DR Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    eric. wrote: »
    What are you looking for? Yerba mate is my go-to hot beverage now, but I'm in it primarily for the psychoactive chemicals. Doesn't taste bad though. Earthy.

    whats it do

    The caffeine content comes with other xanthines, notably theophylline and theobromine. The result is a tempering of the caffeine buzz, allowing avoidance of the jitters, anxiety, and other effects of overconsumption without losing much of the energy boost.

    edit:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lNlV1cQ3I4M

    The preparation and consumption ritual is also interesting!

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  • TinuzTinuz Registered User
    edited May 2009
    You have to try Genmaicha at some point. It is green tea with toasted brown rice, it adds a delicious flavor to the tea.

    Slightly off-topic, get a good tea cup. One that drinks pleasantly, it the right size, handles well...I don't know if there is any flavor benefit to it, like a good wine glass, but it improves the experience and enjoyment.,

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  • TheungryTheungry Registered User
    edited May 2009
    Unsolicited but highly related advice: the way you prepare green tea is significant in what flavor/experience you get.

    Unlike black tea, you don't just pour boiling water, steep and drink.

    1: water temp should not be boiling or recently boiling. You want to use water that is hot to touch, but not steaming.

    2: cover while steeping. If you have saucers, invert them over the tea cup.

    3: Don't over steep. 2 to 3 minutes is a max, but higher quality tea actually needs less time. Some teas can steep for 10-15 minutes. Green tea is not one of them. High quality green teas may only need to steep for 30-45 seconds

    For more sepcific info: [URL=]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Green_tea#Brewing[/URL]

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  • EggyToastEggyToast Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    I like Oolong tea because it's light without the "green" taste of green tea. I usually add just a pinch of sugar to helpl bring out the sweet flavor.

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  • HypatiaHypatia Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Oh, I should have mentioned I third/fourth Adagio teas, one of the really nice things they do is they'll throw in samplers of other teas that they carry when you order from them so that you get a chance to try stuff out without buying :D

  • EWomEWom Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    I am intrigued by Yerba Mate.

    However, I've got a question about it. Do you "need" to go through that huge preparation to get the energy effects of it, or can you brew it up like any normal tea? Tea in hot/warm water, steeping for a bit, then removed.

    I'm currently still battling a horrible energy drink/pop addiction that's rotting out my teeth, and turning to tea as my substitute of choice. Drinking all kinds of tea, and they are delicious, but very few touch my caffeine addiction, and it seems like Yerba Mate may.

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  • CokebotleCokebotle 穴掘りの Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    I have no idea what it might be in English, but if you can find "Genmai-cha", it's probably my favorite right now. It's green tea with roasted brown rice. Wikipedia says it's the same name, though, but your best bet may be an Asian import store, unfortunately.

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  • AgentflitAgentflit Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Cokebotle wrote: »
    I have no idea what it might be in English, but if you can find "Genmai-cha", it's probably my favorite right now. It's green tea with roasted brown rice. Wikipedia says it's the same name, though, but your best bet may be an Asian import store, unfortunately.

    I like this tea too, it's a little like drinking popcorn. I've bought it from adagio and my local tea shop.

    Online tea shops are great and cheap but if there's a real store nearby you can ask to smell different teas so you only buy what you like (Plus the satisfaction of helping support a local business). I discovered Silver Needle this way, my favorite tea!

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