Sunday, 7 February 2010

Surprising fact abut white tea (and no, it's not the antioxidants)

I've always been a huge fan of tea, whether it's 'builder's brew' (PGtips with milk and a hefty dose of sugar), Arabic mint tea or fancy loose leaf stuff. I tried to get into coffee briefly when all those coffee shops opened in the UK back in the 90s but the coffee was just bad and sitting outside in the rain on a 'continental style' pavement cafe with patio heaters just didn't do it for me. When I moved to Spain, where the coffee is pretty decent, I had another fleeting obsession with the brown beans but unfortunately I seemed to develop some of that curious stomach sensibility that's so common in Spain 'me ha sentado mal' (I could write reams about my Spanish friends and their delicate stomachs :-)) and drinking coffee lost some of its appeal. At some point it occurred to me that coffee simply made me jittery and nervous and gave me 'coffee breath' so I decided to call it a day. That's when I went back to my old friend tea; light, delicate, and according to all the medical and media hype, good for you too. While I was familiar with green and black teas I didn't know much about whites and was curious to try them as they contain more free-radical fighting anti-oxidants than any othe variety (meaning it could play a tiny part in the prevention of cancers and other ageing-related maladies). But white tea is sooo expensive, and to really benefit you need to drink quite a bit of it. However, the cost ceased to be an issue when I found out a little secret that most tea speciality tea shops fail to tell you - you can actually re-use fresh white tea leaves up to 3 times and you even get different flavours with each brew! And the same applies to many other quality loose leaf teas be they green black or Oolong. Needless to say I hastily made my way down to the lovely Tea Shop on c/Fuencarral and bought 100grams of white tea (of course they didn't tell me about the whole rebrewing thing). Will let you know how how I get on and if I suddenly revert to looking 18 again just from drinking white tea ;-)


Rob Innis said...

After 10 yrs in Spain I have to have my daily fix of coffee, but indoors I have become adventurous with drinking tea. There is a wonderful selection of teas in most Spanish supermarkets - at a very reasonable cost.
Can't relate to 'sensitive Spanish stomachs'? not what I see locally as they wind into food, alcohol,coffee, licquers etc etc

Nadya said...

Hi Rob, it seems that drinking tea and infusiones has become quite fashionable in Spain :-) Re the sensitive stomach thing, I have several Spanish friends who seem to have really sensitive stomachs and find even a bit of black pepper 'picante' and are ok as long as they're drinking proper coffee fro machine but feel really rough with nescafe (to be expected I perhaps) - funny that they're not affected by alcohol or eating at midnight though :-)

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