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Satsuma. For the Japanese, the name of this juicy melt in your mouth little orange conjures up images of a Japan long past, a world of Samurai, Geisha, and Emperors. Satsuma, you see, was the name of what is now known as Kagoshima Prefecture on the southern tip of Kyushu Island. This ancient kingdom is where the Satsuma, (Latin: Citrus reticulata,) sometimes referred to as the Satsuma Mandarin, or Satsuma Tangerine, is thought to have originated. Beloved by the people who inhabit the region, the little fruit has been celebrated in Japanese song and story time and time again. Sometime during the 1300's a Japanese poet penned these words describing their flavor.
Oh satsuma, some say you can be quite bitter,
not I, no I know the truth
In sooth you are sweeter than your citric cousins
Your juice is the sweetest nectar.
True to these words, the flesh of the Satsuma is indeed sweeter than many other varieties of citrus. It is this sweetness, underlying the astringent character of our high grown Ceylon that makes this blend really stand out. Brewed hot or cold, this is one tea that will have you reaching for pen and paper!What type of tea
What type of tea do we use, how do we flavor the tea and why do we use natural flavors?
- We only use high grown teas from the top 3 tea growing regions of Sri Lanka - Nuwara Eliya, Dimbula and Uva. These three high-grown districts produce flavorful teas that have classic ‘Ceylon’ tea character which is noted by floral bouquet and flavor notes, touches of mild astringency, bright coppery color and, most importantly - perfect for use as the base tea of our flavored teas. (We have tested teas from various other origins around the world as base stock for our flavored teas, but none of these teas made the grade.) Dimbula and the western estates of Nuwara Eliya have a major quality peak during Jan/Feb, whereas Uva and the eastern estates of Nuwara Eliya have their peak in July/Aug. This ‘dual peak period’ allow us to buy the best for our flavored tea blends several times during the year, ensuring top quality and freshness.
- We use flavoring oils not crystals to give the tea drinker an olfactory holiday before indulging in a liquid tea treat.
- We specify natural flavors. High quality tea tastes good and natural flavors do not mask the natural taste of the high grown Ceylon tea. (The norm for many making flavored tea is to use overpowering artificial flavors, which can be used to hide lower quality tea). Natural flavors do not leave an aftertaste giving the tea a clean and true character. It should be noted that natural flavors tend to be somewhat ‘soft ‘ and the flavors slightly muted, but for many this is a refreshing change and one of the desired attributes of our naturally flavored teas.