Having the blues doesn’t always have to be a negative thing… Welcome to the very first week of my month long Oh CANADA series! Originally, I had an entirely different tea picked out to review from Lemon Lily, but when I was introduced to this vibrant herbal blend a couple months back, it only seemed right to switch things up a bit. Lemon Lily is a tea company based right here in Toronto, founded over 5 years ago, boasting a catalogue of 200+ tea blends that are 100% all-natural, GMO free and certified organic! The amount of yellow used in their branding is a definite mood booster. But today, the focus is not on yellow, but the colour blue. A tea as unique as Blue Chai deserves to be talked about!
The white tin that Blue Chai is packaged in is slim, freshly sealed, and labeled efficiently. The gorgeous, deep blue butterfly pea flowers are the first thing my eyes land on once the tin is open. They easily make up 90% of the tea, followed by moderate-sized slices of dried ginger and bits of cinnamon bark. The listed ingredients are (certified organic): butterfly pea flower, ginger, cinnamon, and cardamom. Personally I’m not sure of what butterfly pea flowers are supposed to smell like, but otherwise I can detect each of the warming spices in this blend. If I didn’t know any better, I would have pegged this for a standard chai, based off of smell alone.
Lemon Lily considers two teaspoons brewed in 100°C (212°F) water for 4-6 minutes to be the “perfect steep”. For just over six minutes, I steeped Blue Chai in boiling water.
At this time, the shade of blue that is sitting in my cup is absolutely stunning, almost unbelievable that it was produced naturally. It’s such a deep blue that I can no longer see the bottom of my mug. I would say it’s comparable to an indigo or a dark ocean blue. The aroma of the steeped tea is super earthy, with a hint of lingering “spice”. The cinnamon and cardamom are subdued, compared to the ginger. I really love the way these three spices come together to create that distinctly familiar chai flavour, without the need for a base of black (or even green) tea to back it up. Blue Chai is smooth tasting and incredibly flavourful; I feel no need to sweeten it whatsoever. But on the other hand, I do like to add a splash of milk in from time to time. The creaminess helps to give the tea a bit more dimension, and of course, there’s a new hue of blue to ooh and aah over.
Blue Chai wholeheartedly embodies its namesake, from start to finish. Not only is it a caffeine-free alternative to a traditional chai tea, it’s a downright fun sipping experience! I don’t own very many teas with butterfly pea flower as a predominant component, but I’m glad to have discovered this one. I highly recommend that you try Blue Chai as a latte, you won’t regret it!
Have you experienced the wonders of butterfly pea flower? Sound off in the comments below!
Join me next week for a post featuring a rare tea straight out of Kenya!
Until we steep again…