I’d known we’d want a black tea with hibiscus ever since we worked up Type O.
However, it didn’t seem particularly pressing at the time, especially given how obnoxious it was to work with our original supply of hibiscus.
There are a number of ingredients we’ve discovered that are somewhat weaponized. Whole dry hibiscus flowers are definitely on the list. It took us multiple tries to come up with a method that didn’t waste too much flower matter AND didn’t draw blood.
Yes. You read right on that last part. Didn’t draw blood. First experiments with breaking up hibiscus flowers I stabbed myself repeatedly on sharp bits. (Actually had to take a couple days away from working with tea waiting for hands to heal up.)
So… while I love hibiscus, and so does Mister Tea, I ended up avoiding using it in tea. Not consciously, really, but it did happen.
One of our suppliers eventually started offering hibiscus in smaller bits that were usable right out of the bag.
There was much rejoicing.
One of my ongoing projects at the moment is to expand our selection of – every sort of tea we use that isn’t our standard black tea or Russian Caravan. I decided to start out with the green teas and our white tea.
One morning I settle in to work on a green tea I’d scribbled notes down for – and after brewing the test cup, I’m wandering around, doing work things, mulling over the taste – trying to decide if the balance worked well, or if I needed to change the ratios in the tea to truly have a winner.
This process led me to think about the taste of rosehips… which led me to hibiscus, as I put it in a similar flavour category… which led to me remembering that we’d wanted a black tea with hibiscus – and it seemed really odd that we didn’t have it yet.
I hadn’t been intending on inventing more than the one tea that day, but the hibiscus black got stuck in my head and would not go away.
The first test blend was so visually striking, I knew it would need to be connected to a character with a particular sort of style.
Originally we were thinking of Rowena, and had some tea name ideas in that vein – but as the conversations on Twitter and between Mister Tea and I evolved – we realized Crowley had that particular sort of style.
And we miss him.
Mister Tea came up with ‘Crowley’s Kiss’ on the second or third day of name discussion, and we knew it was a lock.
Organic Ingredients: Fair Trade Black Tea, Hibiscus
Batch Size: 2.8 ounces, approximately 25-30 servings of tea
Options: Loose Tea (Sample, Bag, Tin), Teabags (Single, Sample, Bag)
*We do not recommend using dairy with teas containing hibiscus. Sometimes it will curdle.