Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A Pure Leaf Moment

There are those moments in life that are truly pure. A quiet moment looking out over the misty mountains at dawn.

Hearing and seeing your baby laugh for the first time.

But a pure moment doesn't necessarily have to be a momentous or grand occasion. They can be simple things too, like reading a beautifully written sentence, or hearing a song that gives you goosebumps, or noticing the first tiny tomatoes on your first attempt of a vegetable garden (which has turned into a jungle, by the way).
Tame garden

Jungle garden
Tiny tomatoes
But I digress. In these pure moments, there is great joy and peacefulness. Maybe that's the reason I've been so drawn to single estate teas recently. Such pure leaves, allowed to be solely themselves, is a rather sublime thing.

The muse for such ponderings? Assam Hazelbank, from Whittard of Chelsea. I think I'm on something like Day 5 of complete obsession.

Pure heaven
Assams are often included in "Breakfast" tea blends, so it's no surprise I would enjoy any Assam. But this isn't just "any" Assam. It's from a " small and picturesque garden producing one of the world’s best teas. This tea was named after Hazel, the daughter of state official, Dr Mead." I love that description.

Smooth, full bodied, not a trace of bitterness. Even after steeping way too long, it simply gets stronger, not soapy as some teas can become.  The word that keeps popping in my mind whenever I take a sip is, "Pure."  And so... every day, I fill my tea cup again and again with these pure leaves. I can't stop. And, frankly, I don't want to.