My preference towards books and teas has developed a definite pattern.
Have you ever been so enamored with a book that it was a total inspiration to you — to try a new recipe — read another book by this author — to immediately share this book with others — be a happier person for what life has provided — or, as in my case, time and time again, to try a specific tea. But then I normally can relate a specific specialty tea to whatever book I am reading. “Tea Time is Enjoy A Book Time.”
There are definitely certain books whose inspiration remains with me beyond a cuppa of appropriately paired tea. For example, The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See. This is a book that I devoured twice for its poetry, plot and Pu’erh. So, obviously the tea best enjoyed during all my readings was Pu’erh. The dark robust earthiness of the tea was a natural pairing to the mystery of an endearing unknown bond between a mother and daughter with a mystical connection from a disc of Pu’erh.
The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane and Infused: Adventures in Tea (author - Henrietta Lovell) are similar in that their main characters are specialty teas but beyond that they differ in many ways —one is a novel while the other is a memoir from the life of a very enthusiastic tea specialist. Infused: Adventures in Tea impacted me in so many different ways that I have based several of my last blogs on it, its tea, and its author. Both have become an inspiration for me to work harder, do more, and reach higher — things that I was struggling with lately. To me the tea best paired with this book is the Rare Tea Company’s Chocolate tea, a fruity organic Grenadan cacao nibs blended with the rich maltiness of Malawi black tea. Like the book, this tea sounds like a “has been done” tea but the mouth feel and after taste of the tea are surprisingly pure chocolate without the added sugar. A marvelous surprise that satisfies and is desirous for more.
Now to the third and most recently discovered book — Lunch in Paris (A love story with recipes) by Elizabeth Bard. What could be more appealing than a book with a loving connection based on food taking in place in the country of passion to all foodies — Paris! I do like to consider myself a foodie; although, one that definitely wishes they had spent more time developing a palate. The book contains many memorable stories with a personal food connection for the author. The tea best associated with this book would be a Japanese Sencha for me. One with a delightful veggie freshness of spring while maintaining an abundance of umami to provide the buttery feel of French foods.
Beyond the tea connection I am seeing a definite connection to books written by, experienced by, and detailed by very strong woman. Woman who overcome the difficulties life sends their way to achieve satisfying accomplishments.
Perhaps, I am a feminist,
The Tea and Hat Lady