Cab driver to J.D. Jameson” (Julie James, Practice Makes Perfect)
According to that cab driver from Julie James' book, I belong to the Sense and Sensibility category, as I do favour an Earl Grey tea above all, especially first thing in the morning. Then throughout the day I am open to the other types of tea. If you are a teaholic like me, you get excited seeing new varieties of tea in the shops. Twinings has launched a new range of loose leaf pyramid teas, and I was delighted to be asked to test a few samples of the new range.
The new range has attractive colourful packaging, like a collection of bright shawls at an ethnic market.
|Samples of the new Twinings range which I received for testing|
Moroccan Mint with Rose flavour Green tea is a mint-flavoured green tea. Rose flavour is less pronounced than mint, it is there, at the back of the palate, just a hint of rose. I would have liked a more distinct rose flavour, but overall it is an easy light tea, excellent at the end of a big meal.
Nutty Chocolate Flavour Assam has been inspired by tea and chocolate. It smells of chocolate truffles. When you have a sip, first you get a chocolatey taste, then a slight bitter aftertaste of tea. Aromatic, quite light, it might benefit from a dash of milk to smooth the bitter edge. Ingredients include: black tea, cocoa nibs, hazelnut flavouring.
Bollywood Chai Latte - this is a spicy tongue-tingling, aromatic full-bodied Assam combined with the traditional Indian spices. Ingredients: black tea, almond, spice and honey flavourings. It has a note of sweetness, which works well. I had it unadorned to test the flavours, but it will be great as a proper milky chai.
Jasmine Petals & Pearls Green tea is a delicate mix of green tea as well as jasmine and rose petals. It is exquisitely floral. One of my top choices from the eight new flavours I have tried. I find plain green tea quite boring, but make it flavoured, and I am hooked.
Apple & Elderflower Green tea reminds me of long summer days. Ingredients include: green tea, apple pieces, apple & elderflower flavourings. Apples and elderflower enhance the green tea, creating a refreshing and light brew.
The Full English Breakfast is a well rounded blend. It has a colour of dark golden amber and a well-rounded taste. Perfect for a wakey-wakey morning cuppa (though I'll stick to my favourite Earl Grey first thing in the morning).
After tasting all the six samples, I was thrilled to find out that our local Waitrose started stocking a new range of Twinings. I had to restrict myself to buying just three of the new varieties. According to some people in my family, I don't need any more tea, as I have enough supply to open my own tea room.
|Shelves in Waitrose|
Superfruity is a bright burst of colour and berry-licious flavours. It contains a whole compote of ingredients from fruit to vegetables, from berries to flowers. Here you will find hibiscus, rosehips, beetroot, blackcurrant, raspberry & blueberry flavourings, apple, blueberry, orange peel, elderberry and safflower. Zingy, zesty and flavourful, it is an essence of a summer in a cup. Excellent for the late afternoon or evening, when you want to avoid caffeine.
Whenever I find a new variety of Earl Grey, I just have to buy it. Having tried almost all Earl Greys from Twinings, I was curious to discover a Plummy Earl Grey. This is advertised as a light, floral tea, with rich, juicy plum and a dash of star anise. Ingredients include: black tea, star anise, bergamot and plum flavourings. When this tea is brewing, the aroma is unmistakably plummy. This is quite an enjoyable brew but perhaps not the best of the Twinings Earl Grey family. If I had to do a blind test, I would probably not call it an Earl Grey, despite the added bergamot. I think it will be excellent for poaching fruit and using as an ingredient in tea cakes.
Have you tried any of Twinings new teas? Which one is your favourite?
Disclosure: I received six teabags for the purposes of testing and reviewing. All opinions are mine.