Monday, January 31, 2011

Winter-time Black Teas

   I handle pain and illness much better than most people.  However, sometimes you have to admit defeat.  Announcing that I am under the weather is very hard for me, call it a pride issue.  My immune system can probably kick your immune system's ass, but the occasional cold is inevitable.  I haven't had a cold in years, but this season I've had 2 (this is my second.)  They don't put me out of commission for any serious length of time, but I do need to take at least one day where I just lay around.  Today will be that day, hopefully, even though I have already had a very productive morning.  On these days--really any lazy day--I love to watch copious amounts of Netflix Instant or Lord of the Rings and drink my body weight in hot tea.  So I thought it would be appropriate to share with you my favorite winter-time black teas that can be bought at any grocery store.  (I'll save the specialty loose teas for later!)

Twinings Earl Grey
Hands down, favorite tea EVER!  I have probably tried over 20 varieties of it.  I've had Earl Grey cheesecake and I have plans to make an Earl Grey creme brule.  But this is the tea that causes a divide in my family.  To bergamot or not?  I love the citrus-y notes and medium depth of flavor.  I could literally drink Earl Grey all day long.  Twining's is the best brand in the grocery store because the bergamot is not overpowering or off-tasting (like some brands... like maybe their oranges went a little south.)  Drink with a slice of lemon and a drizzle of honey.

Orange Spice Tea (sometimes called Christmas Tea)
I have a sneaking suspicion that Kroger's premium brand equivalent (Private Selection) is the exact same tea as Bigelow's Constant Comment.  This tea is rich and full flavored with orange rind, clove, and cinnamon.  So delicious and comforting in front of a fire.  This tea makes the holidays feel like they could last a little bit longer.  I like mine with a little honey and some cream.

Bigelow Vanilla Chai
I lived off this stuff in the month of November during my semester at LSU.  Chai was the fad of teas of a few years ago, but luckily people realized that is beautiful and the varieties haven't disappeared into oblivion.  I especially love the vanilla chai.  Bigelow adds more cardamom to this blend which works wonderfully with the vanilla.  If you like chai, you'll adore this tea!  A simple pour of cream is all you need.

Stash English Breakfast Tea
This is a bold tea with incredible depth of flavor that will get you started in the mornings!  It is the tea alternative of coffee.  There are many brands that make a great English Breakfast but for the regular grocery store, my preferences lean towards Stash.  No real reason, I just like it.  For me, this tea is a little too heavy for the summer months, but great for those chilly days when you just want to curl up with a book and a blanket.  I like to bust out one of my specialty honeys (Pepper, Orange Blossom, Wildflower?) when I have a mug of this tea.

If you have any suggestions on tea I would love to hear them!  I am always looking for new teas.  (Although, I seriously do not need to buy anymore, lol!)

Oh, and sorry.... pictues of Harry Potter food didn't happen.  =(  I will still share recipes though!


  1. I'm not a huge tea drinker but I'm trying to get into it a bit more - I'll have to try these!

    xoxo ~ Courtney

  2. I'm much more of a coffee drinker than a tea drinker, but I do love a cup of Lady Grey with a Proustian Madeleine.

  3. You & my fiance... Tea fiends, the lot! Have you ever tried rooibos (or anything marketed as 'African red tea,' for that matter)? It has a faint sweet fruitiness that's quite lovely.

    xoxo, Scarlett

  4. Hello Lauren,

    Thanks for your Constant Comment mention. Kroger's may try to copy our secret family recipe but they will never be 100% Constant Comment which is offered exclusively under the Bigelow name.

    But enjoy your tea and visit our website some time where we have over 100 flavors to choose from.


    Valorie for Bigelow Tea

  5. I would like to say that I do prefer Constant Comment over any other orange spice variety... sometimes there is a sale on another brand that is just too good to resist.


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