I have always been and always will be an avid coffee drinker. Anyone that knows me, knows I like my coffee to taste like dirt and pennies. Bitter, black and unforgiving…like my soul.
I remember having my first sip of coffee from my Dad when I was 10yrs old. I hated it, but I clearly wanted to be a grown up SO HARD so I forced myself to love it. Nothing like creating an expensive life time habit quite like self-inflicted Stockholms.
My Nana drank tea all the time. Lipton, the ones with the weird ceramic circus animals figurines. 2 sugars, splash of milk. I did not like tea. Because it tastes like old.
I drank coffee, like my Dad and the older kids at Dunks “Baaaw-bee, get me a fahk’n lahge fwench vanillah – extrah extrah! And a cruh-lah, kehd!”
It wasn’t until many moons later when I was on my own that tea was all the rage. Very trendy. I’d drink my $7 cup of coffee and scoff. ‘Pshh. Hippy. Drenk’n tree watah”
Once I opened my palate to other things besides coffee, hot pockets and Bud Light, I decided I’d dive in and try some tea. Mostly only when I was sick. It was the one thing I could hold down. Camomile Sleepy Time was my gateway drug.
I tried Tealuxe and Teavanna, but I was clearly out of place. Loose leaf tea? What am I, a caveman? I gotta boil some leaves and twigs and shit and drink it? Nah, I’m good.
Oolong? Green tea? Black tea? Roobiobiosi? Or whatever it is. See, I knew what chai was, ’cause they had it at Dunks. And it was wicked awwww-some. I did try other tea with flavors that mimicked coffee flavors. Vanilla, Caramel, Hazelnut etc.
But my obsession really took off when then when my roommate Jen moved in and introduced me to the wonderful world of loose leaf tea. At first I was confused “Jen, why do we have all our compost in jars in our cabinets?”
She was very patient with me. She explained the differences between the types of teas, the health benefits, what ‘steeping’ was, how much to use, german rock sugar, agave/honey/sugar types, where to buy good tea. Everything. She made me a few cups of rose hip tea, and something jasmine and a bunch of other things. And that was it, I was hooked. If she wasn’t patient with me and took her time to explain in detail and the benefits of it all, I doubt I’d be as into tea as I am now.
David’s Tea just opened near my office. If you’ve ever been there, it is just as daunting as other tea places, but the staff their are amazing and will explain everything for you. With over 250 different flavors, you won’t run out of things to try. Now I don’t work with David’s Tea nor am I getting paid to say any of this crap, but i’m just super into them. That’s it.
Now I know the difference between white, black, green (love), oolong, pu’reh, herbal, mate (my fave), rooibos etc. I know how much to use, how to steep, how to buy loose leaf elsewhere etc.
The greatest investment I made was a steeping mug for my office. Infuser, lid, mug. Ba’am. Done.
Now, don’t think I’m some sort of traitor. I will still have coffee every day for the rest of my life until I die. But instead of 30 cups, I just have one in the morning, then some tea. I like tea because it doesn’t leave me with ‘yucky tongue’ (coffee drinkers, you know what i’m talk’n bout). I can drink tea without dairy and very very minimal sweetener. Not as harsh on the teeth. Plus, for me at least, it de-bloats, makes my skin smoother and glowy and I feel like I smell better. Maybe that last part is in my head, but I’m fresh to death after I work out if I had some tea earlier.
Anyway, my latest fall tea flavors have been Pumpkin Chai and Mom’s Apple Pie.
“Ha-Ha. LOOK at me, Ma! Drenk’n tea like I’m frum Cambwidge or sumthin!!!”