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Magical properties! It is said that Vanilla calms the nerves, lifts the spirits and improves the romantic aspect of one’s life. Vanilla is an extraordinary flavor, full of mystery and elusiveness that is often taken for granted. Undoubtedly one of life’s little secrets, which is also widely used in medicinal concoctions to make them more palatable. Thus a ‘magical’ flavoring agent, calming the mind and body! Did you know that vanilla is the only edible fruit of the orchid family. There are two types of vanilla that are used for commercial purposes – Bourbon and Tahitian. It is the worlds most labor intensive agricultural crop, taking up to three years after the vines are planted, before the first flowers appear. Vanilla has a long history of robbery and intrigue as it is very expensive and highly prized and in growing countries it is not uncommon for vanilla rustling to occur. As there are about 150 varieties of vanilla, it is certainly a flavoring agent that is suited to one’s personal tastes. You will enjoy this cup 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.