If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know that I have many food loves, which include tacos, truffle fries, wine, and tea. I will intentionally seek out anywhere that promises to feed me one of these four things and have high standards for what these things should taste like. Today, I’m writing about a new update to my love for tea because I have just taken it to a whole new level. I don’t drink coffee or soda, so tea is pretty much my only nonalcoholic beverage that gives me any flavor outside of my usual carbonated water. I drink hot tea every day in the winter and iced tea every day in the summer. It’s delish. My mom and I love to visit all tea houses and shoppes, both in Indiana and abroad and if we can’t find one, we throw our own tea parties. We make scones and sandwiches and desserts and tell stories while drinking full pots of tea. We’re pretty good at this, BUT until this week, I had never actually blended MY OWN tea.
This is where HoiTEA ToiTEA comes in. They are a local tea shop located right down the road from the bungalow. I visited last year when they first opened, but they have made some major changes, so I had to go back for a second trip. The sweet space has room for a cafe, classes, party space, and retail shopping. The owners were so kind and invited the Indy Blog Society to take part in one of their tea blending classes. This two-hour tea blending class (usually $35) covers history of tea, brewing techniques, and guidance on how to compose a tasty blend. The class is set up with all the tools you might need including a scale, gloves, measuring spoon, funnel, etc and then has 20+ jars of different bases, florals, and spices to create a unique tea that is just right for you.
I started out with a simple mix of 1.5 ounces of Green Rooibos as a base mixed with .25 ounce of Bee Pollen and .25 ounce of Rose Petals. After I blended the three ingredients together, I was able to brew a trial cup of tea to make sure that I was satisfied with my blend. My end result tasted OK, but was a little bland, so our instructor recommended that I add .25 ounce of Peppermint and .25 ounce of Hibiscus. These additions helped my tea turn a pretty pink color and have a bit more obvious flavor. I was given a bag to take my blend home in, complete with room to write the “recipe” on the front. I am now welcoming all visitors who want to come over and share a pot of my very own personalized tea blend.
Overall thoughts? I was very impressed with how much our instructor knew about tea. The class felt very comprehensive (I’ve heard there’s even a longer option available for the REAL tea nerds out there) and I walked out feeling like I actually learned something. I enjoyed the hands-on nature of the class and felt it would be a great alternative for a girls night instead of the repetitive pottery painting, cake decorating, and flower arranging outings. I am happy with my final product and am excited to have something that will last a while in my cupboard and will be a conversation piece when I share with friends. You can check out HoiTEA ToiTEA’s schedule of events here (they have other fun classes too, like tea and pastry pairings!) or request a private class.
Now you know! Happy blending! Has anyone else blended their own tea? How did it turn out?
6283 N College Ave
Indianapolis, IN 46220
Saturday & Sunday: 9:30am–6:30pm