Forest Moon Spice (Organic Rosemary Sage Chai)

Small white bowl on a green textured stone table, filled with a blend of rosemary, chai, lemon balm, and chai spices.

The origin story for this tea starts in a place that has become a fairly common reason things get added to our array of teas.

Forest Moon Spice began with a survey.  Specifically, a survey for our Tea of the Month club.

I’ve spoken to our need for more herbal teas in a few of our prior tea posts – and how the realization of that need was triggered by discovering that people do not just turn to herbal tea for medicinal purposes.1

There are also people who want herbals just for flavour.  This may be driven for medical reasons – a need to eschew caffeine, or avoid tannins – or by a dislike of the flavour imparted by the leaves and twigs of the tea plant.2But whatever the reason, herbal teas just for enjoyment are definitely desired.

I have become rather fascinated with (and sometimes fixated on) the concept of them myself.3

The woman who first sparked my realization of this need also has a love of chais.  This tea was one of several spawned by her first survey.

It seemed potentially odd, at first, using savory cooking herbs as the flavours to build a tea around, but it turned out quite nicely, and the process of creating it expanded the range of possibilities for tea.4

It was created, tested, moved to the “needs a name” shelf, and then sat there for a disconcertingly long time.  Part of this was a flu that decimated me for the first part of the year, part of it was that our holiday rush extended through almost the entirety of spring, and part of it was the more recent health issues combined with a death in Mister Tea’s family.

It was a lifesaver during part of that time, as I needed to cut well back on my caffeine while I got food sorted out, and the medicinal aspects of this tasty chai were helpful on a number of levels, while the tastiness of it was a mental salve.

As I got myself pulled back together and started being able to work again, I took stock of a few things.  One of which was the “needs a name” shelf.  There were 22 teas on it.

It was more than full.  It was full enough that I couldn’t allow myself to play with anything new until we’d named some of them.

So I turned to Twitter.  Mister Tea and I have had immense amounts of fun with the brainstorming sessions that happen when we spin a tea out into the internet ether, sometimes with a direction attached to the name, sometimes no more than the tea and the taste profile of it.

The most obvious options for this one were out, as they are already in tea journals as references for other teas.

However, as the tea was discussed, Mister Tea said a thing that stuck with me, “It looks like a forest floor.”  There was something in the aesthetic of the image, the sprigs of rosemary, the shapes of the bits of sage and lemon balm, with the spices peeking through that had been fascinating me.  I’d kept coming back to the image of the tea, just to look at it, because it was oddly soothing.  One of those times he happened to be looking over my shoulder, and I expressed how I felt about it.  Which led to his statement.

Which made me start thinking about forests I have known – both the ones I have walked in in real-space, and the much wider array I have visited in other forms in the digital realm, or seen onscreen, or conjured in my mind based on magical words written by another human.

There have been so many that have been special to me.  Camping in the Colorado mountains, a weird little adventure in the Black Hills of South Dakota, a program two summers in the Adirondacks, and then there is the array from games.  Everfrost, Darnassus, the Misty Mountains,the various Shrouds – and a number of others where I can call the music up in my head, but do not immediately recall the name of the location.5  I’m going to set aside speaking to the myriad options from books, because if I begin listing them, this will turn into a marathon post.

None of the things that came to mind really seemed to fit, and it was similar with some of the suggestions offered up by the Twitterverse.6

When I’d first started wandering down the “forest floor” track there had been one name that had popped to mind as a jesting “funny, but we shouldn’t call it this” option.  “Ewok Woad.”

I loved Endor.  I loved the Ewoks.  There was something about them that made me very happy as a child.7The glimpses of them in the (now not canon) novels continued to do so for my older self.

As we discussed naming this tea, my mind just kept cycling back to Endor and the Ewoks.

Mister Tea offered “Forest Moon Spice” – and it felt right, and we kept it.

An array of bags and tea tins and a small paper packet, arrayed around a small white bowl full of a blend of spices and herbs.  The bags and tins are labeled "Forest Moon Spice."

Now for the basics:

Organic Ingredients:  Lemon Balm, Ginger, Sage, Cinnamon, Cardamom, and Rosemary

Batch Size:  3.2 ounces, approximately 90 grams, and will make at least 50 servings of tea

Options:  Loose Tea (Sample, Bag), Teabags (Single, Sample, Bag)

Purchasing:  Personal Shop, Etsy Store

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  1. Yeah.  I know.  Not rocket science.  Seems pretty obvious, really, once I think about it. 
  2. Strange, at least to tea-fixated people like Mister Tea and I, but it does happen.
  3. Mostly due to the realization that my caffeine consumption is something that has given medical professionals pause.  At least once blood has drained from the face of one I consulted, when I answered the “how much caffeine do you drink” question.  I’ve been working on this.  Not enough.  But it’s a process.
  4. One of the reasons I will almost always run with an idea once it settles in is that the weirder the idea, the more likely I am to learn something in the process of experimenting with it.  And even learning that something was a terrible idea is something that increases my overall skill with tea.
  5. In some cases because I didn’t play the game for long enough to have the maps and places lock down in my mind – not uncommon when we were wandering through MMORPGs, trying to find a good fit.  In others because I knew the route so well that names became less important.  One of my old habits was to station myself in a relatively safe spot where the environmental sounds and location music were comforting, and then not log out.  Was a way to help me sleep without inflicting my old sleep playlists on Mister Tea.  He did not feel that Nine Inch Nails (among others) counted as lullabies.)
  6. Though there are now books I’ve decided I need to read or reread.
  7. Not just in Return of the Jedi.  I am one of the few, the odd, the heretical – who actually LIKED the Ewok movie.  I will admit I only saw it once, and I was very young, but…

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