PG Tips, well known for their tasty black tea blends, has come out with a green tea. I got to try some recently. Unfortunately, it was bagged, so I wasn’t sure how this was going to go. (Yes, I have tried their black tea and other bagged teas and liked their taste. So there was hope.)
Many tea drinkers like bagged tea. Let’s face it, bagged tea is convenient. Sadly, though, getting tea leaves into those little bags involves one of two options. Either the tea processor has to — gee, how do I put this delicately? — mangle those leaves (running them through a big, scary machine that chops the leaves into itty bitty pieces) or, when they have pulled out the best leaves (whole and pieces), take the dust and “fannings” left over and bag it (cheaper bagged teas like you get at the dollar store). In the first case, you can usually get a decent tasting tea (no, not nearly as good as a full leaf tea). In the second case, you get a so-so to downright awful tasting tea. At least, that has been my experience so far in my tea drinking life.
So, how is this bagged green tea from PG Tips made? Definitely, from chopped up tea leaves. I even cut open a bag to see for myself:
The pieces are large enough to be caught by a strainer. Not wanting to waste the tea, I tossed it loose in a 2-cup teapot, then cut open a second teabag and tossed its contents into that teapot, too. These are those oh-so-famous pyramid-shaped teabags PG Tips is known for. I further decided to go for two infusions, something I almost never do with bagged teas. So how did it go? Rather surprising, actually, in a good way.
First, the tea steeps fairly quickly. Hubby heated the water to 160˚F and poured it into the pot. I set the timer for 3 minutes, but smelled the tea after 2 minutes and decided to “decant” the tea then. I strained it into a measuring cup. The liquid was a deep golden with a mildly grassy aroma and flavor, and only a hint of astringency. Hubby and I sipped and “oohed” and “aahed.” Then, he heated more water and added it to the pot. I set the timer for another 2 minutes. The second infusion was lighter in color and flavor, but only slightly.
#1 is the first infusion, #2 is the second infusion:
The second infusion was also mildly grassy but with no astringency. The infusion might have been as strong as the first if we had let it steep 3 minutes. We still had about half of the first infusion left, so we decided to combine it with the second infusion. The result was an infusion that was a balance of the two. You don’t have to do this, though. Both infusions are very drinkable by themselves. In fact, as green teas go, this is one I would consider keeping on hand in my tea pantry and reaching for whenever I want a cuppa green tea. In other words, a basic, a staple.
One thing is for sure: it doesn’t last long. Before we knew it, hubby and I had each consumed a couple of cupfuls.
Okay, so it’s a bagged green tea from a big name tea company. But it really is good. Just cut open those teabags, dump the tea into the pot, steep, and enjoy!
A.C. is always rigorously testing teas and posting the results over on her blog, Little Yellow Teapot Tea Reviews!