Monday, 29 October 2012

Review and Give-Away: Adagio Tea Sets


Earl Grey Bravo

I am something of a tea addict. It goes beyond being British, because although I know that, along with complaining, sipping the hot stuff is one of our national pastimes, few people I know have a whole cupboard dedicated to tea. Admittedly, I keep a few other dry goods in there, but it's mostly loose leaf teas. I should actually keep the rice elsewhere, because recently when I cooked some for a friend, it had bergamot topnotes. I kept quiet about it, and I don't think he noticed, but I suspect I have too many Earls hanging round in there.

Must act soon.

It had never occurred to me to buy tea online until I was contacted by someone from Adagio Teas who asked if I'd like to try some of their range. I suspect that's because I tend to buy speciality teas by weight, from tea shops, where I can see, smell and touch the tea leaves before deciding which ones to buy. My colleagues will attest to this: I have bored countless many of them to tears doing so. What can I say? I am picky.

As a result, my first instinct was to turn down the offer, but having had a snoop around the company website, I quickly realised that Adagio take tea even more seriously than I do. So I did the right thing and agreed to try some. The good news is that you are going to get to as well. I asked if Adagio would allow me to give some tea away to readers of Delicious Delicious Delicious, and they've only gone and given me 5 (5! Count them!) sets to offer you. We'll get to how you can win one later. For now, let's check out the tea!


Choosing which ones to try was quite difficult. Adagio carry a huge range, and each tea has its own story, descriptions and a cool review feature which gives feedback from people who have bought and drunk the variety in question. I asked to try out three teas - the Earl Grey Bravo is what we'll be brewing up today. Check back later in the week to find out about the rest.

I have to say up front, before we even put the kettle on, how much I am impressed by the way these teas are packaged. People of the Internet: how annoying are those traditional, paper lined cellophane packets you find most loose leaf teas in? I cannot stand them! Fortunately, help is here: the heavy duty bags that Adagio use are resealable, which means that I can use my clothes pegs for hanging out wet laundry and keep my tea super-fresh as well. It might sound odd to talk about packaging, but as a tea drinker, this was one of the first things I noticed. The people who run this company obviously care about the products they sell and have thought about the end user.


Each packet of tea is also printed with recommended brewing times and temperatures for the contents, though so much of that is about personal preference anyway that, ever the rebel, I didn't pay much attention.


Earl Grey always reminds me of my friend Rish and Lucy. They drink it like it's going out of fashion, and they have a preferred brand. I can't wait to see what they make of the Earl Grey Bravo you see here. Because, honestly, if you'll forgive the pun, this is truly a stand-up-and-clap-worthy cup of tea. It's not just that it tastes wonderful (fresh, light and with a real zing; I really wouldn't add milk) and smells great (you get a real aroma of tea as well as bergamot, which is the whole point after all), but it's beautiful too. The tea is littered with blue cornflowers and pieces of orange peel. This is why I love loose leaf - it's so much more exciting than dumping a bag into a mug and adding hot water is.

I know a lot of people will say that loose leaf tea is fiddly and time consuming to prepare, and I can't really argue with that if you only have delicate chinaware. But Adagio also sent me one of their award winning ingenuiTEA teapots (and will be giving 5 of them away as well!), and it has changed my perspective entirely.


Full disclosure: I expected this to be gimicky and ineffective. But honestly, I know people who are now going to get one for Christmas. I like it that much.

Hopefully my dreadful pictures will illustrate why. You simply take the tea pot and add tea. Then pour over boiling water and wait until the tea is brewed to your taste; the pot is transparent so the tea's strength can be judged easily. Next, and here's the magic, place the pot onto your mug of choice and watch the tea filter through the fine mesh bottom. The leaves are left behind, can be emptied quickly and easily, and then you just pop the pot into the dishwasher.



Honestly, this pot is amazing. I use it at home and I've even brought it with me to work in my suitcase. I never thought I'd be brewing leaf tea in hotel rooms, but that's what I've been doing. It would be ideal for the office too. Or for camping. Or anywhere.

I'm sensing you might also want one. Well, as I said, Adagio are kindly giving away 5 starter sets comprising of 4 teas (details below), a glass mug and an ingenuiTEA teapot. The teas that are up for grabs are:

(Yes, they have a tea called Ooooh Darjeeling!)

If you do the maths, you can see this is a serious haul. For your chance to win a set, here's what you need to do:

  • Leave a comment on this post letting me know which tea you'd most like to try and why. Don't think you need to write an essay. This is just fun! I like silly answers just as much as serious ones.
  • If you prefer, leave the comment on the Delicious Delicious Delicious Facebook Page. You can like us as well! That's fine too.
  • Comments will close at midnight on Monday 5 November 2012. Winners will be selected at random shortly after.
  • Email entries not accepted. 
Check back to see some of the other teas I tried out later in the week!

22 comments:

  1. The Rooibos Vanilla sounds gorgeous! I'd love the chance to try more loose leaf teas. Thanks for the giveaway :)
    Helen x

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  2. Hi Peter
    Hope you are well!
    I'd most like to try their oolongs.
    I'm putting together a round up of new (to me) tea companies, so it would be great to try some of Adagio's range.
    Looks very appealing!

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  3. As much as I love Jasmine tea (and it is really hard to find a good one, not too bitter but still full of flavour) I'd love to try the Earl Grey one - I always try the Earl Grey first. Also your description sounds lovely and I want a cuppa right now. Cheers!

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  4. Oh my goodness, this giveaway sounds like a dream! I love tea, especially good black teas because they (can) have aroma, delicacy, and the wake-me-up kick! Of all the teas on the list, I'm dying to try the Earl Grey Bravo from the Black set. I love Earl Greys anyway, but after reading your description of the orange peel and cornflowers, all I can think is "I want I want I want I WANT!!"

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  5. Oooh, I'd love to try the chocolate black tea...mostly because it sounds totally cool and I've never had a chocolate flavored tea!

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  6. As a tea lover, this is a really exciting contest. Thank you! I'd love to try the oolong set. I've used the ingenuiteas pots before. They are awesome. They're particularly great for single serving ice teas. Double the amount of tea leaves you would use (so as to make a concentrate), brew, then release over a martini shaker filled with ice. Shake the martini shaker and strain your perfect, never overbrewed, ice tea into a large glass. Enjoy!

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  7. Hi Mr. P, I am hoping you mean the closing date is 5th November rather October. All the teas above sound truly scrumptious but the green teas make me want to dig out the tea pot and cups and saucers, go out to the garden and enjoy a cup in the winter sun. Bliss!

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    Replies
    1. Corrected! Thank you for your Eagle Eyes!! :)

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  8. I would like a taste of Ti Kaun Yin. As one of China's most beloved oolongs, her intriguing lingering floral aroma is enough to make anyone scream "Ooooh Darjeeling!" :)

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  9. I would love to try the Dragonwell green tea! I'm always looking for interesting green tea blends to try, and anything with dragon in its name must be good!

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  10. am i the first person to comment on this??
    these sound super delish, especially the herbal and white teas!! the one i'm most curious about is the white blueberry - mmm!

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  11. White peach and mango, blended together!! I love my IngenuiTea pot-- my brother gifted me one for Christmas a few years ago, and it is almost always in use!!!

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  12. White peach and mango, blended together! Also, I love my IngenuiTea pot!! Best Christmas gift ever.

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  13. Ti Kuan Yin sounds like a big hug in a cup OoooH! could do with a hug today

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  14. I won't tell you which one I'd like to try...but I will tell you which one I WILL TRY once my package comes in the mail! LOL The Black Chocolate will be my first cup. Can't wait to try out that new teapot. I want to say I'm just like you and addicted to teas. On my last trip to London I detoured in every little tea shop I came by and spent hours literally talking to each of the shop attendants and smelling all the awesome teas. It was amazing!

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  15. While I'd love to drink Ooooh Darjeeling just for the name alone, I have to say the white set sounds absolutely divine, both hot or cold.
    I never used to drink a lot of tea while I lived in the Netherlands, but coming to the UK I have to say it's one of many habits I've picked up.
    Any excuse for a cuppa!

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  16. Apricot green sounds really interesting. I'd love to try that. I'm not british though, so i'm not sure if i qualify for participating in a giveaway :)

    On another topic i seriously love this blog! It's one of the first i followed. Very good job on this :)

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  17. Morning! Well I'm in the mood for a little exoticism, so would love to try ti kuan yin. No clue what it'll be like but I love a little mystery! Thanks.

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  18. When I first moved to England I thought I'd hit the jackpot: a tea-lover moving to the promised land of tea -- it was a match made in heaven! That is, until I set out to re-stock my tea cupboard (OHYES I have one of those!) and was sorely disappointed... The tea bag is ubiquitous! It's an abomination! Loose leaf tea is the only way to go. So, rather than getting lost on the fashionable streets of London trying to ferret out the very best of loose-leaf tea the capital has to offer, I settled on the easy option: every time I go home to my frost-nipped Sweden, I bring pound after pound of the most beautifully scented loose leaf tea with me. (For survival purposes only, of course)

    I'd love to try the White Blueberry, since white teas otherwise tend to be sold in an unadulterated state. I'm ready for some excitement! (And I would love to see the look on my family's faces when I tell them this Christmas that I won't be filling my suitcase up with tea... I have been made fun of long enough!)

    ReplyDelete
  19. When I first moved to England I thought I'd hit the jackpot: a tea-lover moving to the promised land of tea -- it was a match made in heaven! That is, until I set out to re-stock my tea cupboard (OHYES I have one of those!) and was sorely disappointed... The tea bag is ubiquitous! It's an abomination! Loose leaf tea is the only way to go. So, rather than getting lost on the fashionable streets of London trying to ferret out the very best of loose-leaf tea the capital has to offer, I settled on the easy option: every time I go home to my frost-nipped Sweden, I bring pound after pound of the most beautifully scented loose leaf tea with me. (For survival purposes only, of course)

    I'd love to try the White Blueberry, since white teas otherwise tend to be sold in an unadulterated state. I'm ready for some excitement! (And I would love to see the look on my family's faces when I tell them this Christmas that I won't be filling my suitcase up with tea... I have been made fun of long enough!)

    ReplyDelete
  20. I would choose the green for sure but my daughter would beg for the red.
    Any color in the rainbow will do, we would love to try a new tea everyday if we could.

    ReplyDelete

That's what he said.

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