Thursday, December 2, 2010
Jolly good Royal Air Force tea
Continuing in presents vein here's a terrific gift for any buffer or tea lover of your acquaintance: a tin of Royal Air Force Tea. It's selected and packaged by the enterprising Henrietta Lovell of the Rare Tea Company inspired by a marvellous video she made for the Guardian.
As you'd expect it's a full-bodied black tea of backbone and character (no namby-pamby green tea for our chaps) but manages to be wonderfully fragrant and subtle as well. A million miles from the standard builders brew.
According to Henrietta's website it's blended from teas from the Makaibari Estate in Darjeeling and Satemwa Estate on Thyolo Mountain in Malawi. You can see the fine big leaves once you've strained the tea.
I also learnt from the enclosed leaflet that you shouldn't refill the pot once you've poured the tea but leave the leaves dry and then heat a freshly-filled kettle to just below boiling point and re-infuse them. They can be used at least twice which makes the purchase price of £5 for 50g less costly than it might otherwise appear (though 10% of the price you pay goes to the RAF Association Wings Appeal)
She also supplies refill boxes which means you can not only buy it as a gift but keep some for yourself. How could you not when it's "Calming in times of national peril and fortifying when courage is required"? And jolly refreshing to boot.