Friday, May 9, 2014

Teasenz: Snow Chrysanthemum Flower Tea, A Tea Review

My day started kinda gloomy for me, I had a much dreaded dentist appointment in the afternoon and the thought of it was making me cranky. I was expecting to go back and find out I had more work to be done, that some new problem had arisen thanks to my wacky immune system, but no! I was given a clean bill of mouth health! Combine that with my 'Sistah from anothah Mothah' buying my leftover jewelry supplies meaning I could finally get the new travel gaiwan set I have been dreaming of for months means I actually had a surprisingly good day.

Today's tea from Teasenz is of the floral variety, Snow Chrysanthemum Tea or Xue Ju Hua Cha. This is a fancy type of Chrysanthemum, not the usual fluffy white flowers I am used to, these are a beautiful blend of golden petals and amber 'disks' (which are actually a cluster of tiny flowers, an interesting quirk of composite flowers) that are quite small and delicate. Grown only on the Kunlun Mountains, this flower is lauded for its health benefits thanks to having 18 amino acids, pretty cool little flowers! The aroma is a strange yet not unpleasant blend of strawflowers, dill weed, cocoa, fresh flowers, caramel, and raw honey. It is really complex, I found myself sniffing the flowers for quite a while just trying to pick out all the notes and see how they blend together.

Steeping the tea changes the flower's aroma to more herbaceous and dill like, with notes of strawflower. There are still delicate notes of sweetness, but they are mostly overshadowed by the other notes. The bright red liquid has captured all the sweetness! With a blend of caramel and cocoa, there are only hints of dill and strawflower.

I am drinking this tea hot, as I usually do, but I am astounded by how cooling the tea is. If I didn't know that is an affect of chrysanthemum tea (in Traditional Chinese Medicine, chrysanthemum tea is recommended for people with too much heat) I would be thinking that the snow themed name was putting ideas into my head. This tea is surprisingly rich for a floral tea, there are flavor notes of dill and sage with a nice kick of strawflowers. This fades to sweet caramel and apricots that leaves a lingering sweetness. I gave this tea a second steep and had the same result, it is very enjoyable...and as someone who is usually not the biggest fan of chrysanthemum tea, I consider that a win. I did run into one little hiccup while drinking this tea, it had some very grainy sand-like sediment that was made for some unpleasant dregs. Teasenz website does not mention rinsing, but after doing a little research on the Snow Chrysanthemum I saw quite a few recommendations for rinsing, so that should take care of any sediment. Other than that, this tea gets my seal of approval!
Second steeping :)

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