High rolling

I seem to have an affinity to expensive things. Take this for example: today I was in Steeps, Calgary’s trendy tea house in the upscale Mount Royal Village building just off of 17th Ave. The tea I selected was one classified as “rare”, and hence I paid an extra dollar for the press pot of this “Iron Goddess Special” oolong tea. However, this tea was incredible. So good, I decided on buying some to take home. I checked out the price list, and it said for rare teas to ask for pricing. Gah. I asked the woman there, and she sort of rolled her eyes and said, “I’m going to have to check that for you…” I didn’t like the sound of that. Oh well, the small tin was only $18.50. About the same price as a very high quality pound of coffee. So I got some. It’s a crazy looking tea.

Intelligentsia carries it too. They say this about the tea:
“Also known as Ti Quan Yin. Our Iron Goddess of Mercy, hailing from Taiwan, has become one of the best-known and most treasured of all oolongs. Iron Goddess of Mercy offers a light golden infusion with a smooth body, and a sweet finish. Floral and slightly roasty flavors make this a complex and dynamic cup.”

Pretty good description if you ask me. I likened it to “consuming a garden”. Hence the floral notes. They are pretty dominant. And throughout the steeping process (you can repeatedly add water), it does get sweeter, kind of like maté. Anyways, that’s all for tonight.

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1 Response to “High rolling”


  1. 1 Neill September 5, 2006 at 8:45 am

    I stumbled across your blog looking for coffee websites for Edmonton and Calgary locations (in Edmonton at least, good coffee doesn’t seem to exist).
    Nice blog, and I really think your rants are well-deserved. When I ask my self-labeled coffee officionado friends for advice on finding good coffee here (a very very good roaster–maybe the only good roaster here– shut down this year) they invariably offer up Second Cup, Java Jive, and even Starbucks.
    I’ve been living in the most famous tea area of Japan for the past 2 years and let me tell you, what they sell here at “specialty” tea shops is often not “high quality,” “rare,” or expensive. Now that you know the tea you like, take a trip to Chinatown and I’m sure you will be able to find the same tea for a much lower price. The tea you bought is actually quite special, though. The leaves are hand rolled and (probably) fermented, which gives the tea its distinctive shape and rich flavor.


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49th Parallel El Salvador La Montaña
Excellent coffee for everyday drinking. Well expressed acidity and classic El Salvador profile.

Bulleit Bourbon
By far the best bourbon available in BC for the price. $35 for a bottle gets you the highest rye content bourbon on the market. Lots of spice and typical bourbon corn sweetness. Excellent on its own, but also makes a mean Old Fashioned. Better than Knob Creek in my books and pretty close to Woodford Reserve.

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