Then I realized that I'd asked you do to something I'd never done myself!
Have you ever opened a tea bag? And why do they put tea in little paper bags?
|a pitiful, junky tea bag of nameless origin that I'd decided I would never set lip to|
I assumed tea bags existed for our convenience, so we could be done with cumbersome tea balls, floating leaves in our cups, strainers, and all the tedious paraphernalia of ancient tea time. How nice of those tea companies. But No! Of course, they use tea bags so that they can sell tea that they would otherwise never be able to pawn off on anyone. If you doubt this, cut open a tea bag.
It's true. It's tea dust.
Here are the three: teabag (left), Lipton loose tea (middle), Golden Tips tea (right)
Golden Tips tea:
I hope you can see why the bag is essential. That tea dust would end up throughout your tea pot and cup, even if you used a strainer, because the tea particles are so fine they would pass through any strainer. And do you notice the difference between the Lipton and the Golden Tips? Even the Lipton still has small particles that will muddle with your tea's clarity and flavor. But the Golden Tips is nearly all large pieces. This gives their tea a smooth, mellow, delicious flavor. The lack of "tea dust" in their tea not only keeps you from having a cloud of murky black particles in your pot (when the bag breaks); it dramatically improves the flavor.
So, there you go. Go cut open an old tea bag. Look at the pitiful stuff you've been drinking. And I'll point out something that Dasha wrote to me -- if you go into a really nice coffee shop, they'll have artisan coffees, whole bean ground (and sometimes roasted) right there on site, in many flavors. They cater to coffee connoisseurs. But what do they offer to tea connoisseurs? Teabags! It's true! You'll find a little selection of Tazo or Stash, or Celestial Seasons, but they'll all be in bags. And they're all tea dust. Dasha says this is true in Australia, and it's true in the U.S. also.
We must drink our tea at home, and order from Golden Tips or some other reputable tea company. It's the only way. Perhaps we should start a movement of tea shops? What think you?