Tea of the Week for July 30/Featured Reblend for July: Bananas! (Black Tea)
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Tea Description: I was inspired to reblend this one because I kept reading one of my Steepster friend's comments about wanting "MOAR Banana" in her banana flavored teas. (I don't think I need to name names, I think she knows who I'm talking about!) So I decided to do this reblend because this is one of the more memorable teas that Frank put out in his last months doing the 52Teas thing. At least, for me it was very memorable because like my Steepster friend, I'm a little bananas about banana teas! (Psst! Wanna read my review of this tea? Click here!)
Frank's description of this tea went like this:
Lots of people have commented on our banana tea blends in the past. We’ve used banana in a few blends inspired by banana pudding, bananas foster and even banana bread, but I thought this week we would really go bananas and just go with an all out banana tea. We’ve blended our Pettaiagala Extra Long Leaf OP black tea from Sri Lanka with real freeze-dried bananas and organic banana flavors, and this, my friends, is bananatacular! It’s bananaramic! It’s enough to leave you humming the Batman theme– “Nana nana nana nana nana nana… Batman!”
I managed to locate a Pettigala estate Ceylon similar to what was used in the original blend - it's a fairly mild black tea that works well with the banana which is a mellow flavor. A more robust tea would have obscured the sweet yet authentic banana notes - but this smooth Pettigala Ceylon allows the banana to do its thing while still offering a smooth black tea flavor in the background.
If you're bananas about banana flavored tea - you gotta try this one!
organic ingredients: single estate black tea, bananas & natural flavors
Yay! I AM IN LOVE WITH THIS TEA!
This is a tea that I'd been planning for a while, but since I use different tea suppliers than Frank did, it took me a little while to locate the right black tea base for it. Originally, I had planned to use a more substantial black tea as the base for this blend - but I realized that the banana notes were getting lost in the strong black tea notes - it just goes to show you that it REALLY does matter what teas you use as a base for a blend. This Pettigala is a medium bodied tea that is smooth and a bit lighter in flavor than my 'usual' black tea blend; it offers a really pleasant, smooth taste and provides a perfect platform for the flavor of banana to shine.
Because - even though banana IS one of my favorite flavors to utilize - it doesn't always come out quite as planned. I mean, consider for a moment the humble banana. It's a very smooth and almost creamy tasting fruit but it's also - when compared to other fruits - somewhat bland. It doesn't have what I'd call a particularly strong, aggressive flavor so if you're planning on creating a tea that's just BANANAS - you need to have a base that won't overwhelm the banana so that when it's time to sip - the banana is there loud and proud.
to brew: these leaves are rather long - so I don't know if conventional measuring tools (ie: the teaspoon from your utensil drawer) will do you much good with measuring this tea. Here, you'll want to utilize a scale, if you have one - or one of those nifty bamboo scoops . . . again, if you have one. If not, you can use a teaspoon, but again, I'm not sure how effective a tool it will be. 3g of tea to 12 ounces of hot water (near boiling: 205°F) and steep for 3 minutes. strain and allow to cool for about 10 minutes. enjoy!
This makes a fantastic iced tea!