Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Tea & Chocolate
We tasted 6 different teas along side 6 scrumptious chocolates. I had paired tea and chocolates which I thought would coordinate best, and from previous experience expected to find how each chocolate enhanced each tea. We were delightfully surprised to find the tea enhanced the chocolate as much as the reverse!
One of the pairings, an intense orange infused dark was mated with our orange blossom oolong. The oolong is not exactly a flavored tea, but has subtle hints of orange from orange peel. When we sipped and nipped these side by side--WOW! The orange in the tea was so beautifully enhanced that we were all amazed. And then, upon tasting the chocolate again, the orange flavors positively resonated with each other. What an eye opener!
I'd experienced a similar reaction at the previous tasting where an intense dark was paired with a Keemun. I tasted the Keemun--yes, the familiar hint of ripe red grape with backrgound hints of cocao. But after the chocolate, with my next sip of Keemun, it was as if a whole bunch of grapes burst in my mouth! Simply put: scrumptious.
If you have never realized what wonderful mates tea and chocolate can be, you simply must try this enlightening experience for yourself. General rule of thumb: pair lighter chocolates with lighter teas, such as white chocolate with white tea, light milk chocolates with light greens, and darker chocolates with heavier black teas. You are sure to be pleasantly surprised.
I have to admit, we were all sporting a bit of caffeine buzz after all that chocolate and tea, supporting the idea that it was an eye opening experience in more ways than one!