Thursday, January 24, 2013

Put the kettle on for Robert Burns Birthday

January 25th is the birthday of Scotland's celebrated poet Robert Burns, 1759-1796.  You don't have to dish up haggis, neeps, or tatties to celebrate.  Just put the kettle on and brew up a pot of tea - grab a book of poetry (preferably Mr. Burns himself), pull up a chair and enjoy. 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Supplier Profile: Harney & Sons Fine Teas

Established in 1983 by John Harney and later joined by son's Mike and Paul, Harney & Sons is known for their fine teas and exclusive tea blends.  They pride themselves on accepting only "exceptional teas from the world of fine teas".  They travel to buy teas, and then blend and package them in the Northeast U.S.

We stock a number of Harney & Sons teas here at the Perennial Tea Room because we appreciate the quality and careful flavoring this company offers.  And items like their Tower of London tea sachets are presented in a "must have" purple tin.

With Valentines fast approaching we seasonally carry the Harney Valentine's  tea:  a black tea scented with chocolate and roses. 

During the winter holidays the Harney Holiday blend - black tea with vanilla and lightly spiced as well as the White Christmas tea -a not to be missed white tea with vanilla and cardamom are here.

All year round we stock Bangkok  (green tea with coconut, ginger, and lemongrass, Paris (black tea with vanilla, bergamot, and citrus), Florence (a delightful chocolate hazelnut scented black tea) and Soho (we serve this on the Savor Seattle Chocolate Tours that visit us - a  China Yunnan black scented with chocolate and coconut).

We're pleased to stock such quality teas and to work with this friendly, family owned company.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Baking with Bergamots

Bergamot season has come and gone at the Perennial Tea Room, and again, thanks to our friends at Ripe to You in California who now grow these.

Having Bergamots in our shop every January is a good way for customers to see and smell what is used to flavor a naturally scented Earl Grey, like our Earl Grey Extra. Of course we sell some to customers who would like to try using this unique fruit - but staff like Sue and Annie go bergamot berserk.  Of course I (Sue) only bought 3 this year, but Annie now has 15 to enjoy.

Two of my three bergamots yielded a lovely pound cake with the zest of 1 1/2 bergamots and 2 Tbs. of the juice in the batter.  The pound cake was topped with the juice of two bergamots and a cup of sugar for a citrusy sweet finish..  The remaining zest was sprinkled atop melted chocolate to make an Earl Grey Chocolate Bark.  One bergamot left to use for something tasty and delicious.

My house smelled like Earl Grey Heaven yesterday.

As for Annie's 15, she is going to zest one in her Shortbread batter, and make Bergamot Marmalade, and from there - who knows. 

A good reason to look forward to the dark rainy chill Seattle January days.

I think I'll go make myself a cup of Earl Grey.