The title of this post "Tea in the Library", sounds like a hint from the game of "Clue" doesn't it?
Last week, I went to my local libray...
and I had the most delightful time,
learning about tea & taste testing several different types.
We were asked to bring our own special teacup from which to sip & sample the tea.
I brought my pretty teacup with matching infuser & lid from TEAVANA
It was one of my birthday gifts a few years ago.
I just LOVE how it makes having a single cup of tea such a special experience.It says the Ume blossom on the cup is the beloved symbol of hope in Asian art.
There was a beautiful array of GORGEOUS Hall teapots, (highly collectable)
each with its own special clear glass warmer stand with a little candle inside.
The individual teabags had been filled by hand with various flavors of widely different teas.
There were also bowls of spices, like star anise to examine, smell & savor.
We learned how Jasmine tea made by allowing the tea leaves to lay in racks with another rack of jasmine flowers in between each layer. There is a fan moving the air about in the room until the tea master decides that the tea leaves have gotten enough aroma infused into them. Amazing!
This event was put on by Angela Strach-Gotthardt, creator & owner of *The Secret Tea Society*.
She is extremely knowledgable & was a delightful hostess, sharing tips on herbal & botantical teas as well as secrets to making a really good cup of tea.
She frequently holds a tea tasting "Salon" in her own lovely historic home in Hudson, OH, which once hid runaway slaves beneath its floor boards!
A description of a salon from her website:
"A Secret Tea Society salon is a special gathering for tea and conversation. We seek out and create sometimes minimal and sometimes highly embellished venues for the gathering of interesting and interested individuals to share tea and conversation about virtually any given topic. A historic home, a public venue, a private room, any beautiful space can serve as the backdrop for a morning, an afternoon or an evening of curated teas, delectable treats, and conversations that foster learning and understanding of the world and of each other. Those conversations may leave one with, perhaps, more questions than answers–and that is a wondrous thing."
I was totally in love with her wonderful collection of teapots!
I collected them myself for many years, until I ran out of room, but none of mine are as special as the ones she shared!
She & her assistants passed around little bowls, filled with loose tea, for us to smell & observe.
Some were delightful...others, not so much. ;-p Many smelled like perfume! Not what I thought I would care to drink.
There were glass pedistals filled with nuts & unusual teas...I wish I could remember the name of this one with the little white tips....perhaps it might have been "white tea"!
I wish I had thought to take notes.
These are just some of the DARLING teapots Angela brought to share.
I was PEA-GREEN with envy over her collection.
I was also tickled PINK to receive a little brown envelope, tied with a PINK ribbon,
filled with one of her special blends...Citrus Almond Herbal...DELISH!
The library had put out a cart with a selection of books on the topic of tea.
I wanted to check out each one!
Angela also talked about chilled tea, often infused with fruits & how refreshing it could be during the warmer months.
Angela is holding what she calls a "pop-up" store within the historic Brewster Mansion right on the square in Hudson, OH both this weekend & next.
Don't you just ADORE the little wooden teapots she uses to denote her location?
All the more noticable with their trailing ribbons blowing in the wind. So creative!
She suggested we put a slice of orange rind (without any of the white pith) into the cup, to make your tea even more special.
My sewing/smocking/quilting friend, Nicole visited shortly after the event & we tried it & it tastes divine! I'm going to save the peel from all my oranges & freeze the bits of rind for future use.
I wish each of you could stop by to share a cup of tea during this holiday season!