While spending several months living in Japan in 2006, I had to take an unfortunate break from my daily sightseeing. Struck down with a pesky Asian chest cold of some sort, I was relegated to the couch watching TV instead of exploring sites like the gardens surrounding the Imperial Palace or the bustling skyscraper-lined streets of Shinjuku.
Telling a Japanese friend of my illness, she instantly began extolling the healing powers of green tea, saying no matter what bug I’d contracted the tea would kick it out of my system, pronto. After her suggestion, I began to realize just how many Japanese people I had seen drinking green tea. Yes, the Starbucks location near my home in Tokyo was always busy, but I realized that so very, very many people also enjoyed the icy-cold version, carrying it with them wherever they went. Since it was the middle of a sweltering, humid August, I also opted for a bottle of iced green tea rather than a steaming mug.
Since that bottle of green tea, I’ve read more and more studies proclaiming how green tea, and even black and white tea, can help fight cancer and heart disease, and also aid in lowering cholesterol, burn fat, prevent diabetes and stroke, and even stave off dementia (See WebMD).
There have only been a few dissenting articles written about the ill effects of green tea. It seems in large quantities, more than 10 small cups a day, the tea can damage the kidneys or liver (See NewScientist.com). I don’t think it’s too likely the average person would indulge to that extreme, so the benefits proclaimed have truly become a welcome, tasty remedy.
I’d love to say that the green tea was the magic cure for my pesky illness, but sadly it wasn’t. I think I’ll chalk it up to my inferior American immune system not willing to adapt to my temporary Asian lifestyle.
Take time to savor the tea
These days I’m more privy to chai tea for it’s cinnamon and ginger flavors, but I recently had the opportunity to indulge in a variety of teas from The Cozy Tea Cart, a company that prides itself on providing bed and breakfasts with its line of specialty teas.
The Cozy Tea Cart sent a lovely sampler of their loose-leaf teas that my 13-year-old step-daughter and I decided to brew up recently. Always up for trying something new, Courtany was eager to not only try a cup, but also learn about the different flavorings and how exactly to steep the tea.
Our first flavor of our tea party was Evening in Missoula — an herbal blend of chamomile, papaya leaf, spearmint, raspberry, strawberry leaf, red clover, vanilla passion flower, rosehips, lemongrass, peppermint, star anise, lemon peel, and more. After enjoying a small cup of the deliciously aromatic tea and realizing this blend was for a more adult palate, we decided to try Nut-Tea Cookie as well.
This rooibos herbal tea was a hit! Described as full of nutty goodness with an intense aroma of fresh-baked peanut cookies, the tea is blended with roasted almonds, walnut, peanut, and hazelnut pieces with candied pineapple, mango and papaya pieces. Courtany and I both really enjoyed the flavor and the amazing scent that wafted throughout the kitchen. It honestly made me want to bake up, or at least nibble on, some fresh cookies.
After enjoying several cups of The Cozy Tea Cart tea, I know that innkeepers would be delighted to serve any of the dozens and dozens of tea flavors offered by this New Hampshire company to their guests.
For more information on The Cozy Tea Cart, contact owner Danielle Beaudette at www.TheCozyTeaCart.com