Whether you are a connoisseur of loose leaf tea, or a novice just beginning to explore different blends, you will appreciate the Kati Loose Tea System by Tea Forté ($15) as an easy way to brew one cup at a time. Kati is a streamlined, 12 ounce, double-walled ceramic tumbler that keeps the tea inside hot while the outside temperature remains comfortable to hold. It is available in three colors – white, green, and grass – and comes with a lid and stainless steel infuser. The infuser has a small handle and after the tea steeps I simply remove it and place it on the lid. There is no fuss, mess or dripping, and this is very convenient since I drink a lot of tea while I work. I’ve used my Kati cup every day since it arrived and I love it.
When using the Kati you can measure your leaves (I generally use 1½ teaspoons for a 12 ounce cup) or use Tea Forté’s Single Steeps Sampler ($12), a gift box with 15 pre-measured packets of organic, loose leaf tea. To use them pour the whole packet into the infuser, add hot water, and steep for several minutes. The sampler includes five blends (three of each): Earl Grey, Forté Breakfast, Ginger Lemongrass, and my favorites, Green Tango and Chamomile Citron.
Green Tango is organic green tea with mango. It features Chinese Jade Wing green tea with South African green honeybush and mango. The leaves smell like fresh fruit with a hint of the earthy scent of green tea. Once it’s brewed the pale orange potion evolves into a heady bouquet of mango perfume. The flavor is mellow in a pleasing way with a faint vegetal aftertaste of green tea that anchors the blend. Although it was definitely enjoyable on its own, I added a teaspoon of honey to enhance the sweetness, and that brought out the taste of the honeybush.
The big surprise for me was how much I enjoyed the Chamomile Citron. I am usually not a fan of chamomile, but Tea Forté’s blend of Egyptian flowers mixed with hibiscus, rose hips, peppermint, lemongrass, lemon verbena and licorice root yielded a pretty pink liquor that was calming, delicious and addictive. I knew after my first sip of the aromatic infusion that I had to have more, and that it would become a staple in my tea chest. This sweet and tart brew was wonderful unadorned, but I added a bit of rock sugar and it was outstanding.
Along with the items mentioned here, a visit to the Tea Forté website reveals a variety of gourmet teas, a selection of elegant but completely functional teaware (the Sontu Teapot for loose tea and the matching cups are gorgeous), and a section of gifts for all occasions; the wedding favors and tea infused truffles are just a few of the many that caught my eye. There are links for special offers, a Forté Rewards Program, and even a Tea Forté App. For more info stop by TeaForte.com.
Tea Forté was founded in 2003. Its luxury teas and accessories are sold through fine retailers, restaurants, hotels and spas around the world, as well as being available on their website at TeaForte.com. To facilitate this review Tea Forté provided me with a Kati Loose Tea System and samples of their teas. All photos in this post are ©Tea Forté .
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