Saturday, September 22, 2007

More Jasmine Tea

I firmly believe that if some is good, more is better. Accordingly, since I liked the Fujian Butterfly Label jasmine tea that I wrote about a couple of days ago, it seemed prudent to buy some more. From a quick perusal of the interweb, it appears that there are two major varieties of jasmine tea: the regular kind, which is just plain old pouchang tea with jasmine blossoms interspersed in it, and the kind pictured to the right. Each of those little balls is called a dragon pearl, and each one is apparently hand-balled and is composed the same mixture of tea and jasmine petals. A number of different sources sell them, but they're rather expensive. I'm willing to shell out decent money for tea, but not without trying it first. Therefore, I went to Central Market to see what they had. They had two different options: one from the Republic of Tea at $160 per pound and one from Rishi Tea at $58 a pound. Shockingly enough, I chose the Rishi Tea version and bought about an ounce.

There is no doubt that this version of jasmine tea has a more potent jasmine aroma than the Fujian Butterfly that I tried earlier this week. That's to be expected since the Rishi is fresh and the Fujian is not and since it seems highly unlikely that the Fujian sells for $58 a pound. However, the problem with the Rishi version is that it's all aroma. It doesn't have much body, and there's not a whole lot of flavor there. Maybe that's due to the fact that the Rishi appears to be made from green tea instead of pouchang tea, I don't know. But it was disappointing.

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