LA (AND BEYOND): THE BEST BOURBON TEA
By Nora Zelevansky / September 14th, 2009
Sometimes the one thing you've been looking for most fervently is right under your nose the whole time.
It's trite, but it's true. It's funny, but it's true . . . Still, that fact doesn't help you speed up the process of finding it. At least evidenced by my latest tea drama. Yeah. TEA DRAMA.
See, years and years ago (back when this blog wasn't even a LINT in my eye) I tasted this tea that I absolutely adored at a spa in Santa Monica. But when I asked them what tea I was drinking, they were shady about it for some reason. They claimed that they couldn't really tell me because it was a mish-mosh of random tea bags. But it tasted exactly the same every visit, so that seemed quite unlikely. For whatever reason, I didn't believe the hype.
Then, this past weekend, I attended a lovely baby shower fête for my friend L. with a sort of Tea Party theme (scones and finger sandwiches and all). With my first sip of tea, I knew! I'd finally found the tea. Naturally, I totally freaked out. I mean, I've been looking for this incredible stuff for like seven years! Though I'm sure the girls thought I was crazy, they explained to me that it was "Bourbon" tea from Chado Tea House. Chado Tea House, which is LITERALLY around the corner from my house. All this time, the tea was a short stroll away!
To make matters worse, R. (who was one of the baby shower hosts) explained that she had picked it up and had known about it for some time. So, one of my closest friends already knew the location of my precious tea, but just didn't know about my search!
See? TEA DRAMA.
Well, of course I ran over to Chado at my earliest convenience. The tea is in fact called Rooibos and, instead of being made from tea leaves, it's made from some sort of legume. That means it is naturally decaffeinated, which is also genius in my book. The very knowledgeable manager Katharine ("Spelled like Katharine Hepburn," she explained) told me all about this vanilla flavored Rooibos Blend sitch and then, when I told her I didn't have a way to steep loose tea, she suggested a very inexpensive cotton tea filter (better for this tea than the metal because there are no holes through which the tea can escape).
When I got home, I did what I was told: I added a heaping teaspoon and steeped for seven minutes (longer than the average tea obviously). And VOILA! I finally had my tea. Apparently, you can order it online too.
Now, if I could just discover all the other things in my life to which I am blind, but are right in front of my nose. Maybe if I learn to read tea leaves? I mean, of course, legumes.
xo – N.