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A Day in My Shoes
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Episode 11, Part 2 - A Day in My Shoes - Linda Villano - SerendipiTea

Monday, October 7th 2013 @ 12:00 AM

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A Day in My Shoes – Episode 11, Part 2 - Linda Villano, SerendipiTea


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Welcome to A Day in My Shoes – a blog and sometimes vlog as The Tea House Times publisher, Gail Gastelu, puts herself in another person’s shoes for the day – going behind the scenes in the tea industry!  If you are just joining us, go to the Archived entries in the left column to catch up - beginning with January 2013.  OR

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EPISODE 11, PART 2 – A DAY IN MY SHOES – LINDA VILLANO, SERENDIPITEA

BLENDING TEA AT SERENDIPITEA

The process of creating my first tea blend.

This is far too exciting! The Celebration Jasmine tea is ready - CLICK HERE!

 

I decided that the blend that I wanted to create would be celebratory for The Tea House Times 10 Year Anniversary and I would plan to give the tea as party favors when I celebrate with family sometime in December.  As mentioned in my previous post, I decided the tea base would be my personal favorite green tea, Jasmine Pearls.  Crazy or not, I was determined to make the best tea ever, even better.

 

In keeping with the roundness of the pearls, at first I thought about blending in a few dried blueberries.  Tried it, and it was - just --not right. I told Linda that I really love the beauty of those bright purple/blue cornflower petals, so perhaps we try that? I knew the flower petals would add beauty and color but no taste or fragrance, so should be a great choice as to not change the flavor or aroma of the Jasmine Pearls.  And, it was perfect! Those beautiful petals make me sing, but it was not enough to make me feel that the tea blend was complete.  Now you see at this point, quite a bit of time has already gone by to try things and change course and try something else, carefully weighing, adjusting, cupping and tasting along the way; while constantly writing down the weights of ingredients to create the final recipe. 

 

Since the blueberries did not feel right, I moved on to adding some pretty, round, red currants. But even just a few were too large and overpowered the look of the Jasmine Pearls. And besides that, once combined with the blue petals, it created a red white and blue mixture and that just was not the visual I was going for. So out came the currants and we were again left with pearls and petals.

 

At this point, Linda encouraged me to talk it through. Visually see and feel and taste and determine what should happen next.  As I flipped the pearls and beautiful petals about in the bowl, I proclaimed that it must be like confetti! A celebration calls for confetti! Right!? This special tea for The Tea House Times anniversary must be extra special. So I kept looking over the ingredients in the room and Linda said to keep going, stick with the excitement and determine what could go into my “confetti.” And then I spied rose petals. I knew the scent might detract from the Jasmine but thought if we used just a few, it might be OK.  And, believe it or not, it was more than OK.  I brewed up the sample, examined the steeped leaves and petals, took in the aroma and beauty of the liquor and suddenly realized the blend was perfection. That miniscule bit of rose added to the mixture brought a slight and very unexpected sweetness.  The first brew was slightly sweet with hints of rose aroma over the Jasmine aroma. The second and third brews were less rose and more of my beloved Jasmine Pearl taste that I enjoy daily. As you know, steep after steep teas will reveal a different character and this one does just that.

 

It took quite a bit of time to get the balance of ingredients just right and to record the recipe of the final blend.  I can now say that I have personally experienced the trial and error of creating a blend and the excitement and pride that goes along with it once the final result is achieved. 

 

That was it. I proclaimed the name to be Celebration Jasmine. I danced a little jig in Linda’s bending room as the excitement grew to the realization that I could not only use this tea for my party favors, but allow Linda to be exclusive supplier and distributor of the tea for everyone to enjoy year round. To add to this excitement was the realization that we had also created a tea blend entirely from all organic ingredients, resulting in the following description; Celebration Jasmine:  All-organic green tea blend including jasmine pearls, rose petals, and cornflower petals. A celebratory tea of extraordinary quality and taste for all occasions when only the best will do. An exclusive blend created by The Tea House Times in collaboration with SerendipiTea.

 

With Linda’s guidance and assistance, I will be offering sample tastings of Celebration Jasmine in The Tea House Times booth during the 2013 World Tea East in Atlanta, Georgia and the 2013 Coffee and Tea Festival in Philly/Oaks, PA. The tea will be available for purchase mid to end of October at SerendipiTea.com

 

More about Linda and SerendipiTea next time. . .

 

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