Tea blends call for both art and science, the coming together of flavors and combinations that surprise and please. Breakthrough tea combinations are almost always a result of hours of labour and careful refining and the best custom tea blends must produce teas with pronounced personalities. And there’s always the surprise element when the teas themselves mix to produce something unexpected. Maybe in texture or flavour, brought on by the topography of the estate or the vagaries of the season. Maybe a casual consumer will not always perceive these changes but a seasoned tea drinker will likely appreciate the roller‐coaster ride in every last sip.
Tea itself is easily influenced by the flavours and aromas it encounters and that’s partly why there are so very many blends out on market today. Not only can you blend different varieties of tea, but you can also pack the tea with herbs and spices that add immeasurably to the flavour of the final brew. Of course, it takes some time and patience to run down the clock and let the transfer of aromas happen but the end result can be truly remarkable.
With blending tea, what you add is critical ‐ whether or not the tea is oxidized, where it’s from, the season of harvest. And then, the addition of spices, herbs, dried fruits, and flowers can lead to several possible combinations. Do look for blends that use natural products in place of artificial flavorings.