I have just recently been lucky enough to experience a few days away in the winter sun. Our destination was Tenerife to an all-inclusive hotel in Costa Adeje which had all the facilities you could ever need including vast quantities of tea. What I didn’t realise until we arrived at our hotel was that it was primarily occupied by the British. This meant that there was lots of tea on offer and that my emergency teabags that I had packed stayed in the suitcase. I loved the fact that the hotel had a selection of Lipton teas placed on your table for breakfast and dinner. All you had to do was request a pot of hot water and fresh milk to accompany it. If I am honest I was a little disappointed that this was missing at lunchtime and if like me you wished to have a cup of tea after your meal you had to go to a bar separate from the restaurant.

At the hotel where we stayed there was also classic wooden tea chests with the various varieties of Lipton teas to choose from. These were placed at various bars around the hotel and you could just ask staff for whatever tea you wished to have. I was in tea heaven.

The first tea of choice for me just had to be earl grey. It wasn’t the easiest of the teas to find so when I did I grabbed a few teabags so that I didn’t miss out. On opening the package there was an aroma of black tea with bergamot intermingled with this. This didn’t change on my close up sniff test. I placed my teabag in my teacup and added the freshly boiled hot water to let the tea infuse with the hot water for the recommended brewing time. The tea infused with the hot water and turned to a medium brown colour. But what about the aroma? It predominantly smelt like a nice everyday black tea with only a hint of bergamot noted a little disappointing if I’m honest. On my close up sniff test the bergamot intensified a little but not much. On sipping the tea it tasted like a reasonable quality black tea with a faint hint of bergamot noted. On a positive note it was light and refreshing and worked well milk free. It might also be suited to those who like a weak strength earl grey tea.

Next I decided to try the peppermint tea. On opening the packet the teabag emitted a fairly strong aroma. This was slightly stringer than I had anticipated especially when compared to other teas that I have tried whilst abroad. This didn’t intensify on my close up sniff test. I placed my teabag into my teacup and added the freshly boiled hot water and infused as instructed. The water soon changed to the light brown/green colour. It didn’t take long for the aroma to develop once it had it was fairly strong. This didn’t change on the my famous close up sniff test. On sipping the tea the peppermint flavour was just like the aroma. It was spot on and just the right strength and highly refreshing perfect to be sipped in the sun by the pool. I even got that warm comforting sensation in my tummy that I get when I drink a nice mint tea. I really enjoyed this tea and lost count of amount of cups that I drunk.

As I really enjoyed the peppermint tea I decided to give the green mint a try. On opening the packet I have to admit to be a tad disappointed I wasn’t really greeted by any distinguishable aroma. I was hoping for a slightly grassy meadow that I associate with green tea. There was a hint of this on my famous close up sniff test, but it was quiet faint. As for the mint it simply just wasn’t present. I placed the teabag in my teacup and added my slightly cooled freshly boiled hot water. I left the tea to infuse with the hot water as instructed. The hot water soon changed to a light brown/green colour. The aroma of the tea became apparent as the tea infused with the hot water. It was a faint grassy aroma with subtle but stronger aroma of mint of noted. On sipping the tea I could taste both the delicate grassy and mint elements to this tea. This made a pleasant change to other green teas that I have tried which have had a stronger slightly bitter flavour. It was nice to experience a lighter green tea which had a subtle mint flavour. It was a nice refreshing delicate tea that somehow had a nice soothing and comforting effect as I drank it. I think that I may have drunk more of this than my beloved earl grey.

Onto the green tea. On opening the packet I was greeted by a subtle a faint aroma of a grassy meadow with very faint undertones of smokiness that I associate with green tea. This remained the same on my famous close up sniff test. I placed the teabag in my teacup and added my slightly cooled freshly boiled hot water. I left the tea to infuse with the hot water as instructed. The hot water soon changed to a light green/brown colour. The aroma from the tea intensified only slightly even on my close up sniff test. On sipping the tea I was able to taste the subtle grassiness with the smokiness element intermingled with this. This was slightly weaker compared to other green teas that I have tried. It resulted in a nice light and refreshing green tea that was perfect to enjoy by the pool.

Towards the end of our holiday the forest fruits tea caught my attention, so I just had to give it a try. On open ring the packet I have to admit to being pleasantly surprised. I was greeted by a delightful sweet summer berries aroma. On my famous close up sniff test this intensified and the summer berries became more apparent. I wasn’t really able to smell the black tea. I placed the teabag in my teacup and added the freshly boiled hot water. I left the tea to infuse with the hot water as instructed. The hot water soon changed to a medium brown colour. It didn’t take long for the aroma to develop it was predominantly strawberry with a hint of raspberry with a faint undertone of everyday black tea noted. On sipping the tea the favour was the reverse the tea tasted like an everyday black tea with a faint hint of summer berries intermingled with this. A little disappointing really because the flavour just didn’t match the aroma.

I had a lovely week relaxing in the winter sun and never thought that it would be possible to drink soo many cups of tea by the pool. I would love to return and leave this cold weather behind, maybe next year……..

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