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8 Treasures Tea (Carrefour Blend)

Got a couple of packets of this by way of visiting relatives from China earlier this month. The instructions were pretty basic about steeping all the ingredients in a small cup of water. After a good peer at the little packet filled with fruits and nuts, I decided to throw caution to the wind and steep one pack of ingredients in about half a teapot of water instead.

On initial sniff, the tea has a very light, almost imperceptibly mild floral scent, with a stronger note of dried apple. The actual flavour is predominantly that of dried apple. Unfortunately, in spite of the presence of chrysanthemum (contributing to the mild floral scent), boxthorn berries, a whole dried longan, orange peel and nuts, none of these flavours were particularly present.

I admit I might have overdiluted the whole mix, but I was rather surprised at just how strongly the apples came through, even after a second steep (adding hot water to a little of the first batch). Steeped it for 10 minutes the second time. It's grown darker, and the apple scent is much stronger. Sniffing a bit of chrysanthemum as an undertone, and there's also a hint of red date. The flavour has developed a stronger taste of berries, and a slight hint of sourishness, I think from the orange peel and flowers. This aftertaste is similar to that of chamomile tea, arguably, one of my least favourite flavours.

The keyword is mild. It is a very mild tea. I would say the overall effect is almost like partaking of a very weak guava tea. I was quite disappointed, as 8 Treasures Tea is usually rather more complex.

I'm not very fond of dried apples in my tea, being heathen and fond of citruses, or a tinge of bitterness. The blends of 8 Treasures Tea I'm more familiar with are a lot more robust, usually containing ginseng and black tea, as opposed to the tiny amount of green tea and strong fruit-based flavours present in this mix. It's a pleasant enough tea to rinse the palate with, but not particularly something I'd like to drink too much of though I should probably attempt this again, following instructions this time, just to confirm my verdict here.

Ingredients: Green Tea, Chrysanthemum Flowers, Dried Longan, Dried Apple, Mandarin Orange Peel, Hawthorn Berries, Boxthorn Berries, Red Dates, Rock Sugar


Aug. 29th, 2006 01:57 pm (UTC)
I've made my own herbal teas from things grown in my garden, but haven't expanded to adding spices or fruits. I'd love to hear what you come up with.

And, btw and most importantly, congratulations on your writer-in-residence award! I toast you with a cup of jasmine green tea.
Aug. 29th, 2006 02:21 pm (UTC)
Fresh herbal teas from the garden are definitely very nice to have. Our own wee patch at the moment is mostly citrus and mint, so that limits us a bit. Most of the herbs we grow otherwise are better suited for cooking rather than tisanes.

I'll keep you updated on my hunt for 8 Treasures Tea blends. The next time I end up in an Asian grocery, I should try to obtain the ingredients. My favourite 8 Treasures was actually made as a boxed drink by a soft drink company in Malaysia, but they discontinued this line. Wished I'd jotted down their ingredients beforehand.

Thanks, about the writer-in-residence! I toast you with hot chocolate right back. :)

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