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Perfect for Fall: A Smashing Pumpkin Tea

October 1, 2010

Today’s Tea: Pumpkin Spice by the Boston Tea Company
Indulged in by: goodtea

Pumpkin Pie!It’s autumn, which means it’s also pumpkin and squash season here (a fact which my office is celebrating with an arrangement of colorful and strangely shaped gourds on the conference room table).  The weather lately has been cold and damp, too, but  that means it is now the perfect season to enjoy hot, rich teas again!

Today I decided to taste the Pumpkin Spice tea kindly provided to me by the Boston Tea Company.  I love pumpkin pie, so just the thought of having a tea to remind me of my favorite pie makes my mouth water. 

The Boston Tea Company continues to impress me with their high quality ingredients. Their flavored teas contain actual, flavorful fruits and herbs as ingredients, not just vague “natural” (or God forbid, “artificial”) flavors.  This Pumpkin Spice tea blend uses a black Ceylon–incidentally one of my favorite tea types–as the base. Tiny orange bits of what can only be pumpkin are mixed in, as are pale yellow sunflower petals, cloves, cinnamon, and other spices. As you would expect, it smells like pumpkin spice–warm, spicy, and quite appetizing.

The packet recommends steeping this tea in boiling water for 4-6 minutes. I steeped mine for 5 and found it a bit too bland for my tastes (though I have been accused of drinking my tea as if it were coffee), so I steeped it for another minute or so, which improved the flavor greatly. The infused tea is lighter on the tongue than I’d expect from the red wine-like Ceylons I usually drink, but the wonderful pumpkin spices certainly come through in the flavor and aroma. It reminds me of a toned-down chai or a nice winter blend like Mélange de Chamonix.

Still, as I sipped this fragrant but light tea, I knew something was missing. I added a bit of honey–sugar would work, too, I’m sure–and found that the sweetness brought out the spices a bit more. Then I added some milk to the sweetened tea. (I am currently drinking “milk” made from oats, so feel free to use your favorite kind of milk or milk substitute.) The next sip I took literally made me open my eyes with surprise: I could actually taste the pumpkin! Delicious!

Conclusion: A versatile, scrumptious tea. Try it straight for a light, very fragrant, and spicy black tea–and then try it with milk and sugar (or honey) for a rich, decadent, autumnal treat almost as good as actual pumpkin pie!

(Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.)

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