I’m a weird tea drinker. Most of you will know I love my tea, but my habits come with some quirks. First of all, I really have to be in the mood for a cup of tea. I adore drinking it, but I usually won’t have it during the day because it relaxes me to the point where it’s all over. Secondly, I’m not a fan of green tea. I just never got over the whole ‘vegetable water’ thing. Thirdly, I can only drink my black tea with milk – I know this is wrong to some people, but that’s just how I like it. I won’t drink PG Tips, I only like Earl Grey as my every day tea of choice. Lastly I take my tea with coconut milk instead of cow’s milk and Sweet Freedom instead of sugar.
With these confessions out in the open, it’s time to get down to business. In around June a wonderful tea company called Teafields sent me a huge parcel filled with samples of their teas. I was overwhelmed. Ever since I’ve been promising them a blog review, and I feel terrible it’s taken me so long to get it done. BUT as previously said I have to be in the mood for a cuppa and I wanted to give these teas the attention they deserved. I will admit I didn’t get through all of them, as there was just one green tea that I haven’t sampled, mainly due to the fact I just don’t get on with green tea (but it’s the prettiest green tea I’ve ever seen!).
Anyway, click on the Teafields website and you’ll see this isn’t any ordinary tea company. It screams quality. They call themselves a British (yay!) boutique tea company and this pretty much sums them up. Not only do they have an amazing selection of tea, but they’re all hand picked and within the descriptions of the teas you can find out where they’re from, the altitude they were picked from and even the temperature you should brew their teas at. AND they’re beautiful. I have to say it was a joy to shoot the teas and now I get to share them with you!
So, here goes!
Royal English breakfast originates from Africa and India. It looks so pretty and I really enjoyed it. A smooth drink, I had mine with some eggs on toast one morning and thoroughly enjoyed it. Once brewed it was a beautiful golden colour. It has a very slight bitter edge to it (which I enjoyed!) so I had mine with some sweet freedom and a splash of coconut milk. This would be a perfect introduction to boutique teas for someone moving away from standard teabags.
Jun Chiyabari is exclusive to Teafields and is handpicked in the early hours of the morning in Nepal. It had a delicate flavour with earthy tones. Well worth a try, even if it’s simply for its decadence.
Jasmine Pearls are a scented green tea. Each pearl is hand rolled in China and this keeps their unique pearl shape. Brewed at 80c so as not to burn the flavour, this was the most pleasant green tea I’ve ever tasted. It was light, calming and very refreshing. Teafields also sent me a sample of their hand stitched tea bags with these pearls inside, photographed below. Look how beautiful they are, and Teafields are the first UK brand to have these teabags!
Imperial Gold black tea also came in these stunning little bags, and once brewed had a citrus-like edge to it. Refreshing and light, I drank this is coconut milk and Sweet Freedom. I really enjoyed this one, and it was an easy drink.
The most stunning of all the teas was the beautiful Flowery Earl Grey. I almost couldn’t brew it because it was so pretty. But I pulled myself together and got on with it. It didn’t disappoint. This Sri Lankan tea brewed beautifully creating a lovely delicate earl grey which would be suitable for every day drinking, but I would just save it for special occasions 🙂 It’s too good to spoil yourself on every day!
Empora Sencha frightened me a bit. Looking like blades of grass, I really didn’t know what to expect. This Japanese tea was brewed at 70c and created a tea with a roasted scent. The taste was fresh and refreshing and not so scary!
Darjeeling 2nd Flush (2nd flush meaning second harvest of the season) I’m actually drinking as I write this. It has a fresh, ‘dry’ taste which I really enjoy and has a pleasantly fragrant flavour…. BUT
…. Darjeeling 1st Flush was the winner of all the teas for me. This was an easy drink, flavourful and really took me to tea heaven. It seems I’m a darjeeling girl! Once brewed it was very very light in colour and once milk was added it was the palest tea I’d ever drunk, but it really came across with flavour and I just can’t get enough of it!
If you’re a tea fan, you should really be treating yourself to some of Teafields teas. Some of their exclusive options are on the expensive side, but the cost really does show in their flavour and quality. You could even buy some as a gift for a tea lover – it would really spoil them and they’d thank you for it. Oh and the guys at Teafields are the most friendly bunch, so hit them up on twitter @teafieldsteas.
This being my first venture into boutique teas, I’m so pleased I’ve had the opportunity to try (and photograph) these beautiful teas, and I feel I’ve learned a huge amount about their origins too.
Thank you Teafields for letting me sample your products, and sorry it’s taken me so long to share – it was worth the wait for me, I hope it was for you too!
Tea samples were sent to me, at no cost, for sample and review. All opinions are my own. All photographs are copyright Erin Mason Photography.