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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Review: The English Tea Store’s White Eagle Long Life Tea

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The Subject: White Eagle Long Life Tea from The English Tea Store.


Water temperature: 180° F
Steeping time: 3 minutes (Don’t oversteep!)

Tea type: White
Scents, flavorings, etc.: N/A
Aroma, dry: Freshly harvested alfalfa
Aroma in the cup, plain: Pale alfalfa
Taste, plain: Full feeling in mouth, buttery (similar to lemongrass herbal), dried alfalfa, peachy/apricotty
Aroma in the cup, enhanced: N/A
Taste, enhanced: N/A

2nd Infusion: Same color, slightly more delicate taste

Someone said he didn’t like this tea but, ever true to my goal of objective assessments, I set that opinion aside as hubby and I embarked on another tea tasting adventure (with the help of the Little Yellow Teapot).

Since this is a white tea, we treated it with kid gloves, that is, water heated to no more than 180° F, and a steeping time of no more than 3 minutes. The leaf pieces are large and unfolded nicely floating loose in the teapot.

The tea “liquor” is pale yellow but full of flavors. Since white tea is made from immature leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant, I was a bit surprised at the complexity of the tastes that greeted us. However, some of them are probably the result of how the leaves were processed.

What greeted our noses first and foremost was the smell of freshly harvested alfalfa. Having lived in rural areas, this was a fragrance well-known to us both. The taste goes beyond that, though. There is a fullness and buttery quality similar to a lemongrass we tried awhile ago. Hubby even detected a bit of fruitiness that is like apricots or peaches (he says it’s hard to tell which). There is also some astringency and tanginess, but no bitterness. The second infusion was about the same in taste with a slightly lighter “liquor.

Hubby thinks this tea would a great one to have with steak or lamb. Might have something to do with alfalfa being a common feed for cattle and sheep.

Definitely an occasional tea. You could try it chilled, but I’m not sure that the delicate yet complex flavors would come through cold.

We couldn’t go to 5 teapots on this one, since there were quite a few stem pieces, probably contributing to the “tang”.

Disclaimer: This tea was provided by the company named. However, the rating of the tea and any opinions concerning it are always strictly objective.

1 comment:

  1. I find that white teas have some of most complex tastes. They seem to be multilayered. White teas also make great iced teas. In fact, I am drinking some right now :)


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