TEA INFORMATION AND BREWING TIPS
Most black teas are graded according to leaf or particle size. Orange Pekoe (OP) pronounced 'Peck-o', is a whole leaf tea. Orange Pekoe has nothing to do with oranges or orange flavor, which is a common misunderstanding. Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe (TGFOP) is the top grade. When harvested during the slow growth periods, these young buds have a golden tip, hence the grade 'Flowery'. When these tips are in abundance the terms 'Tippy and Golden' are also attached. Occasionally the number '1' or '2' may be placed at the end of the letters to designate better grades among similar teas. Similarly the letter 'F' may appear before the TGFOP to designate a 'finer' grade and the letters 'SF' designates a grade of 'super fine.' Thus a tea graded as 'SFTGFOP1' is a Super Fine Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe - grade 1. The next grade below Orange Pekoe is called Broken Orange Pekoe (BOP) which designates a broken leaf. The tea grade which is even smaller than BOP is the PF, for Pekoe Fanning. The lowest grade of tea available is the PD, Pekoe Dust.
At The English Rose, our Darjeeling Second Flush SFTGFOP1, Poobong Estate is truly the champagne of teas! This single-estate tea is hand-picked from the second growth of new leaves on the tea bushes lining beautiful slopes of the Poobong Tea Estate. This tea is considered by tea experts to be one of the finest loose teas in the world. We are proud to serve this tea and urge our customer to try it at least once. Your tea tasting experience at The English Rose includes a bottomless pot of this fine tea or any other tea of your choosing.
For those of you that would prefer something different, we suggest our Lovers' Leap Tea. This Estate tea from Sri Lanka is a classic orange pekoe grade Ceylon black tea that is great all day long and very smooth.
Another stunning tea is our Nilgiri Frost, Burnside Estate. The Nilgiri region of India is producing exquisite teas. This full-bodied tea is picked in January when a light frost has appeared on the tender young leaves. It is highly recommended by Norwood Pratt, legendary tea expert.
If you are not in the mood for a black tea, perhaps you would consider a green tea. We offer several varieties. Our Lung Ching is a classic green Chinese tea from the village of Dragon Well. The flat green leaves produce a clear yellowish green liquor with a slightly sweet after taste. Prized for four unique qualities: jade color, vegetative aroma, mellow chestnutty flavor, and singular shape.
Gunpowder Green is one of the world's best-known Chinese green teas with excellent health benefits. This hand-rolled leaf appears as small grey-green pellets which brew a pale, bright green liquor with a delicate flavor. Perhaps your desires tend toward white teas. If so, then try our Darjeeling White. It is a very rare single-estate tea from the Poobong Estate. This delicate tea is perfectly composed of the first two leaves and bud of the tea bush. It is light in caffeine and a perfect choice for the true tea connoisseur!
Occasionally, The English Rose will offer special white teas such as our White Tea with Mango. This Bai Mudan China white tea includes a refreshing addition of mango. This blend makes a great cold tea as well as hot with lots of antioxidants! We also offer many non-caffeine herbals and infusions. Blueberry Infusion is a delicious blend of dried blueberries and fruit. This has been one of our most popular fruit infusions this year. It contains no tea leaf and no caffeine, but is loaded with antioxidants!
Our Strawberry-Kiwi infusion is composed entirely of dried strawberries, kiwi, and other fruits. This makes a beautiful ruby red cup with an enticing aroma, also excellent iced. This is the perfect drink for a child's tea - no tea leaves or caffeine. Another popular infusion is Ginger-Orange. This delicious and refreshing herbal is fast becoming one our best-sellers! It contains ginger, orange peel and lemon grass and is great for an upset tummy and with no caffeine. Drink it hot or cold!
We also recommend that you try our Chamomile Infusion. This is a pure herbal infusion, composed of only perfectly formed chamomile flowers with a deep, rich flavor. The ultimate relaxing drink at the end of a busy day. The English Rose purchases the finest loose teas from renowned tea importers. The only tea served that is not a fine loose tea is Typhoo. We have learned that some of our British customers have fond memories of this tea. Even though Typhoo is not considered a fine loose tea, we buy it in bulk and brew it the same way as our finer teas. Since most aficionados of this tea prefer a stronger brew we now brew the Typhoo for a longer period of time.
Our average tea stocking level is in excess of 300 pounds. In most cases, we will have your tea choice in stock. Lisa and our servers are all well versed in the teas offered and are pleased to make recommendations that will match your taste in tea and brewing method.
Whatever your preference in tea flavor or brewing time, simply ask your gracious server and we can either advise you or follow your suggestions to enhance your tea experience. Our standard brewing method is to place the proper amount of fine loose tea into a one-time use infuser called a T-Sacs®. The T-Sac is an unbleached paper bag imported from Germany, specially formulated to allow the tea leaves to steep and yet not allow any particles into the tea. This provides for an outstanding brewed flavor and unparalleled color. We brew the tea based on normal time guidelines. At the end of the brewing period, we remove the tea to stop the brewing process so that your tea does not turn bitter toward the end of the pot. However, for any customer that enjoys a stronger pot of tea, we are pleased to accommodate by either adding more tea and/or increasing the brew time. Please inform your server at the time of your order of your brewing preference.