by Cassandra Vincent
Tea and chocolate – two things I love but would not have thought to actively pair together in complementary way. In the past I’ve experienced chocolate with coffee more often or with wine. It turns out tea is a great companion to decadent chocolate.
I went to a tasting event recently and the pairings were:
*Green pineapple blooming tea w/lotus and amaranth flowers– white chocolate covered coconut truffle
White champagne raspberry tea – milk chocolate covered raspberry ganache
Rooibos with peach and marigold flowers – dark chocolate ginger sea salt
**Mauritius black tea with milk and a little sugar – chocolate mousse in a white chocolate cup with strawberries
The first and last were my favourites. The blooming tea and paired chocolate was a great complementary set of tropical flavors. Biting into the chocolate and then sipping the warm tea and allowing it to melt the chocolate slowly was fantastic. Except for the Mauritius, none of the other teas were sweetened which made for an even better complement to my palate as it was not overly sweet – the tea did not compete with the chocolates for sweetness. The addition of the milk and the sugar in the Mauritius served to ease the bitterness of this full bodied tea and was a decadent finish with the mousse.
I can’t help but want to play with more chocolate and tea combos after this indulgence. Raising a cup to indulgence and hoping I inspired you to go and get something tasty. Life should be delicious. What are you waiting for? Go on and get yourself some!
Some ‘go deeper’ details:
*About blooming teas: Known by many names including blooming, blossoming, flowering, these are teas hand tied with flowers and sometimes flavoured with fruits as well. The tea used is usually of high quality and most often white, green or black. The shapes they are tied into vary from balls to slipper shapes to crescents to hearts and more. I’ve even seen one in the shape of a flame. When steeping these teas open up in the water releasing their flowers and creating beautiful shapes. They are great served in glass teapots to watch the opening. Also beautiful served in wine glasses.
** About St. Mauritius tea: The tea plants used to make this unique tea are grown between vanilla plants and are imbued with vanilla flavor and aroma just from proximity. The tea has no further flavouring during processing. It is a very broken leaf tea so that the water during steeping has a lot of surface area to work on resulting in a dark, strong brew quickly. It is a full bodied tea with a pleasant light vanilla aroma and flavor that is great with milk. Sweetener also brings out the vanilla notes.
The teas I had were from Chado tea room
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