Since ‘ancient times’ the Chinese have known about the medicinal benefits of green tea – there are claims that drinking green tea can reduce the risk of developing certain cancers and it’s also supposed to be beneficial in aiding those with rheumatoid arthritis, high cholesterol levels and impaired immune functions.
It’s a diuretic, an astringent and a rich source of antioxidants that fight free radicals; it can aid weight loss, prevent dental cavities, prevent symptoms of colds and flu and may also be help treat genital warts… but I don't care about any of this – I drink it because it tastes good!
At least, the good stuff prepared correctly does!
You may be able to tell that I am ‘a bit’ of a tea snob. I rarely have tea when I’m dining out as so few places (even those with Michelin stars) serve high quality teas and even when they do, so few places know know how to prepare them.
My favourite tea and one that I stock up on when in Singapore (or have shipped to me between visits) is TWG’s Japanese Gyokuro Samurai (Order code: T800).
The largest in the world, TWG Tea’s collection numbers well over 1,000 different single-estate, fine harvests and exclusive tea blends from all of the tea-producing countries. Second only to water, tea is one of the most widely consumed beverages in the world.
TWG's may be my teas of choice at home but somehow they taste better when enjoyed at one of their Tea Salons, especially when followed by some of their macarons (I also have a weakness for macarons – see here).
As you would expect, TWG macarons are flavoured with their teas. On this visit I selected: Earl Grey Fortune & Chocolate; 1837 Black Tea & Blackcurrant; Lemon Bush Tea; Grand Wedding Tea, Passion Fruit & Coconut and Matcha Green Tea.
During my visits to Singapore I have visited all eight of TWG’s Tea Salons and Boutiques but it’s their ‘TWG Tea on the Bridge’ at Marina Bay Sands that is my favourite as I like to watch the boats going up and down on the faux canal.
On this visit I thought I’d treat myself and ordered a pot of beautifully subtle fresh, flowery Yellow Tea Buds from Szechwan, China (T600), one of their most rare and expensive harvests. (The only other occasion where I’ve had Yellow Tea was at The Fat Duck… it’s really quite special.) I bought 100g back with me that should see me through for a while.