White Iced Tea: Mint & Lime White Peony

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Crisp cucumber, cooling mint, and the zip of lime juice pair wonderfully with our White Peony white tea in this week’s refreshing iced tea recipe. This drink is elegant, light, and breezy and pairs well with hot summer nights and friends.

Mint & Lime White Peony Iced Tea

Ingredients:
– 2 cups water
– 6 tea bags of White Peony
1/4 cup lime juice
– 1/2 cup mint simple syrup (see ingredients below)
– 1/2 cup cucumber (chopped coarsely)
– 1 cup sparkling water
– ice

Mint Simple Syrup:
– 1/2 cup sugar- 1/2 cup water
– 1/2 cup packed mint leaves

Instructions:
1. Begin by boiling fresh, filtered water.
2. Place tea bags in heat safe measuring cup.
3. Pour 1 cup of boiled water over tea bags.
4. Steep tea for 3 minutes and then remove the tea bags.
5. Make simple syrup by boiling water and sugar together, stirring constantly to dissolve the sugar. Once dissolved, add mint leaves and stir. Set aside to cool.
6. Add lime juice and 1 cup of cool water to tea.
7. Strain mint leaves from simple syrup mixture.
8. In a pitcher or serving container add cucumber and simple syrup, muddle lightly.
9. Add lime juice and tea mixture to pitcher. Stir to combine.
10. Add ice to pitcher to chill.
11. Serve over ice with a lime wedge, cucumber slices, and mint as garnish.
Makes approximately 4 8oz servings.

June may be coming to an end, but be sure to check back in July for ice cold tea treats to keep you cool! Chai Tea Latte popsicles, anyone?

Top 5 Reasons to Drink Tea in 2016

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January is National Hot Tea Month, and what better way to start the New Year off right than with a rejuvenating cup of hot tea?

Here are our Top 5 Reasons to Drink Tea in 2016:

1. Tea helps soothe symptoms during winter cold season.Breathing Space_72dpi
According to the CDC, adult Americans combat an average of 2-3 colds per year. Supporting your immune system with a Wellness Tea* like  Breathing Space* or Throat Cozy* can help maintain healthy airways or soothe your throat.*

 

2. Avoid the afternoon energy slump.
Breakfast Blend 72dpiMillions of Americans experience the dreaded “3:00 slump” and reach for sugary beverages like soda or energy drinks, or big mugs of coffee, to combat their dip in energy. We recommend choosing a natural way to energize with a tea like Energy Boost*, a crisp, lively green tea blend that supports healthy energy levels and vitality.* Or, try Breakfast Blend from our Gourmet Line, for a robust black tea to enliven your afternoon.
3. Detox all year long with tea.
Beauty Detox_72dpiSure, detox diets are popular in January, when New Year’s resolutions are new and shiny, but what about a regular detox regime throughout the year? Simply Detox* and Beauty Detox* are specially formulated with herbs to aid liver function and promote clear skin, cleansing your body from the inside out.*
4. Consider your heart health.
Hibiscus Heart_72dpiWith Heart Month just around the corner in February, our new Hibiscus Heart Wellness Tea* helps support cardiovascular health with hibiscus flowers and hawthorn berry.*

 

 

5. Eating Clean? Be sure to drink clean too.

  • Choose Certified Organic. Even teas billed as “natural” can contain pesticides. Look for the USDA Organic logo on the package to ensure you are drinking the real thing.
  • Avoid GMOs in your food…and in your beverages. Look for the OrgGFGMONon-GMO Project Verified logo on the packaging to ensure there are no artificially manipulated ingredients in your tea, coffee or other beverages.
  • If you are watching your gluten intake, pay attention to sneaky ways gluten can enter your diet. Be sure to look for tea products with the GF logo indicating Gluten-Free certification.

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Valentine’s Day Tea & Chocolate Pairings by Relationship Stage

"Valentine's Day"Want something special for your sweetie this Valentine’s Day? Create a “mood” with some well-paired tea and chocolate! The right tea with the right chocolate might just get your significant other in the mood for love.

According to William Leaman, executive chef and owner of Bakery Nouveau, Seattle, “Carefully chosen chocolates can pair wonderfully with teas. They can share many of the same characteristics, such as floral or fruit aromas and varying levels of astringency from tannins. The key is in finding the right combination that offers either balanced flavor contrasts or reinforces a particular note. Paired correctly, a tea and chocolate combination can offer a greatly enhanced tasting experience.”

We have a few tantalizing combinations to suggest that are sure to impress your sweetie and created some playful suggestions as to what stage of a relationship might call for which kind of tea and chocolate pairing.

Crush – dark chocolate with fruit & nuts and Gourmet Earl Grey with Lavender

Light-headed, giddy, can’t get the object of your affection off your mind? Sounds like the distinct signs of a serious crush. Show them how you feel with dark chocolate with fruit and nuts paired with Gourmet Earl Grey with Lavender tea. The citrus from bergamot oil in Earl Grey compliments the sweet flavors from the fruit. The herbal nuance of lavender balances the acidity of the tea and chocolate while complimenting the earthiness of the nuts. This is a tantalizing combination for any “wooer” or “wooee.”

Sweet Romance – white chocolate paired with Whole Leaf Organics Jasmine Green

True white chocolate (made with real cocoa butter, sugar, milk and vanilla) pairs perfectly with tea scented with jasmine blossoms. Jasmine comes from the Persian “yasmin,” meaning gift from God. The ethereal nature of this floral green tea compliments the rich and creamy, yet delicate flavors of cocoa butter. This romantic combination of a sensuous tea and uncommon confection is a delicacy that is sure to get the attention of your Romeo and make a lasting impression on your Juliet.

Passionate New Love – lemon and white chocolate ganache and Gourmet Chai Spice Black Tea

Whether in love, or when pairing chocolate and tea, it’s important to share similarities while complimenting your differences. Like a new romance, a spiced tea like Chai offers exciting complex notes and flavors, while the lemon provides a refreshing contrasting simplicity that compliments the balance of spices. And the combination of the exotic spices is the perfect compliment to the flush of new love.

Steady Relationship – salted caramels in chocolate with Original Darjeeling

Salt, one of the most essential minerals, is prized for its ability to preserve the most precious provisions. Traditionally cherished above all other black teas, Darjeeling tea is often referred to as the Champagne of teas. Show your sweetie how much you value your enduring love by making an elegant toast with this classy combination. Darjeeling’s naturally bright fruit flavor and subtle floral aroma compliment the creamy caramel, chocolate and hint of salt.

Long-Term Love -75% cacao paired with Whole Leaf Organics Lychee White

True chocolate for a true love. We tend to crave stronger flavors as we get older and our palates become less sensitive. Dark chocolate with 75% or more cacao content offers a robust, satisfying indulgence. Dark chocolate has more tannins and higher acidity and yearns for the subtler flavors of white tea to help balance the stronger flavors. Lychee fruit adds a touch of sweetness and a silky compliment to the robust dark chocolate, making an enduring blend that’s strong and tender.

Turbulent Love – “Rocky Road” with Gunpowder Green

An olio of dark chocolate, nuts and fluffy marshmallow signifies the roller coaster element of some love affairs – sweet but with a salty, sassy, complex undertone. A little messy, if you will. Gunpowder Green Tea has a smoky flavor that pairs well with the salty and sweet combination of Rocky Road and smooths the experience.

For the tantalizing chocolate varieties suggested above contact Bakery Nouveau, or visit your local chocolatier.

What do you think of our pairings? Do you have a favorite tea & chocolate pairing you’d like to suggest? Send us your ideas!

Staff Favorites: Lychee White

One of the best things about working here at Choice Organic Teas is the sheer range of teas we get to try. There’s a tea here to fit every taste, and we drink them all. The spectrum of teas that we offer means that every employee has a different favorite. And like any tea drinker, we’re passionate about our favorites. So each month, we’re going to have one of us here at Choice Organic Teas talk a little about our favorites and what they mean to us.

This month we’re hearing from India Nagy, our Graphics Coordinator. India does fantastic work designing all our literature and new products, including her new favorite, our Lychee White. Here’s what she has to say about this great tea:

White teas aren’t usually what I first reach for on the shelf, but I’m kind of in love with our new Lychee White. The light body of the White seems to carry the delicate notes of the lychee flavor nicely.

The lychee is subtle and fragrant and not overly fruity and sweet like some teas, which seem to mask low quality tea with crazy fruit combinations. I prefer to keep things pretty simple, I drink my coffee black and my tea unadulterated. But sometimes it’s nice to mix things up, and I think this tea is different than anything else I’ve had.

I can also be kind of lazy about dealing with loose leaf, so I like using our biodegradable mesh bags. Much easier to deal with at my desk! Mmmm, think I might go make myself a cup right now…..