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Tea

Tea Discovery | Tea Trunk

Sometime last week my friend Roanna called to tell me that she’d heard about a tea tasting event that was happening soon – would I be interested in going? A big part of me wanted to make up an excuse & not go because I’m so lazy (plus it was very rainy & halfway across the city). But nothing can keep me away from tea (& the company of a good friend just makes it better!) so I went.
And this wasn’t just your ordinary tea tasting either – Snigdha Manchanda, certified tea sommelier had just launched her gourmet tea label, Tea Trunk & was going to introduce us to the six varieties they currently stock.
Snigdha has always studied under a Japanese tea master in Sri Lanka back in 2011 & tea trunk has been around in a different form since then. She then returned home & started to conduct private events & workshops. But since the teas were sourced in very small amounts from various estates, they weren’t available for purchase, until now that is.
The Tea Trunk e-store officially opened for business earlier this month with 6 signature blends – Rose Oolong, Vanilla, Ginger, Lemon, White Moon and Black Tea.
I’m am (& have always been) a sucker for cute packaging. I absolutely loved these tins with cute elephant illustrations.The teas are all loose leaf but for convenience sake they’re packed in tea bags. Not your regular, garden variety tea bags, though. These are transparent so you can see the leaves inside & pyramid shaped to allow it to better infuse. They also are 100% tea leaves (along with completely natural additions according to flavor) – no dust!
Snigdha was warm & friendly & it’s was obvious that she knew what she was talking about. She dispensed quite a few useful tips that I’ve included in this post.
Infusing the lemon green tea – Always remember to pour the hot water over the tea bag & not the other way around. We Indians are used to ‘cooking’ the tea but it’s pretty much murder. Milk isn’t advised for most of these, although you can definitely sweeten according to taste.
Did you know that for something to be called natural in India, it just needs to have 1% natural content? Well as I mentioned earlier, tea trunk is 100% natural & doesn’t contain artificial flavors of any kind. The lemon tea has dried lemon zest, the vanilla tea has real bits of vanilla bean, the rose oolong tea has dried rose petals. The absolutely antithesis of the strong, artificially flavoured teas I’ve been buying from Goa, the tea trunk teas are much more subtle, which I think makes for a much more pleasurable brewing + drinking  experience.Each tea bag can be used twice (great for sharing!) & each tin comes with precise brewing + pairing instructions much like an old favorite DAVIDsTEA. Green Tea shouldn’t be infused at very high temperatures if you don’t want it to be bitter. After the water is done boiling, wait 30 seconds – 1 minute before infusing (that how I wing it, at least. If you want more precision, use a thermometer). Vanilla Tea tastes lovely with dessert, especially cakes & pies.
All of the teas used in these blends have been sourced from India itself, with Snigdha making many trips & tasting hundreds of teas to make the perfect one.
Lastly, Tea Trunk’s offerings are definitely on the pricier side but I think all the care + the best ingredients are enough to justify the price, especially if like Snigdha you see tea as less of a commodity & more of a lifestyle product.
Tea Trunk is available for sale on their e-store, they’re also on facebook & twitter. Snigdha even has a blog. Read Roanna’s take on the tea tasting session (along with some pretty photos) on her blog Jupiter Skye.

Magali Vaz

Magali Vaz

Founder, Blogger in Chief
I love tea, makeup, cats & travel (in no particular order, really). I founded this blog back in 2009 & I also make videos & vlogs on YouTube - come say hi! Twitter is usually the easiest way to get in touch with me - @magali_c
  • Roanna Fernandes

    This was especially a nice session for me because I know so little about teas! I’m glad we went together because you certainly know more. I love that you mentioned all the tips Snigdha suggested (espec. the cooking thing – how true is that! + the pouring of warm water over the tea bag bit to let the flavour infuse better), she really was quite warm a person. 😀 (I was wondering about the whole measuring temp. bit when I followed the instructions on my tea bag and I was wishing I had those nifty measuring meter devices bakers use but I totally didn’t think to use a thermometer. I’m dumb! Haha.)

    • My tea obsession started sometime last year & like most obsessions I’ve read incessantly, hence the random knowledge. I’m not even sure about whether what I know is actually right, so I avoid dispensing any info, for most part. Snigdha was inspiring to be about, & definitely very warm (& bubbly? Or is that too cheesy? But she was sweet + cheery). My mom told me to tell you, please don’t use a regular medical thermometer as it doesn’t go that high, it’ll burst & you’ll have mercury everywhere. My aunt did that in our home many years ago, she used one of my mom’s thermometers to check the chocolate fudge. Thermometer shattered & it all had to be thrown out, I think it permanently scarred my mom 😛
      A candy thermometer or meat thermometer should work fine.

  • Roanna Fernandes

    P.S. I think I am developing a tea accessory fetish, like you! Now, I want that tea tin from The Home Label, a set of glass tea cups and saucers (and white glossy ceramic ones, but both dainty and petite), a tea-cosy and what-not! 🙁 :-/

    • I know the feeling. I feel very strongly attracted to that tea tin from the home label, the only thing that’s stopping me is that it’s a bit pricey & I’m telling myself I don’t need it & can’t really justify the purchase. A part of me is secretly hoping it goes out of stock soon so the temptation will go away, I’m so weak. 🙁

  • Roanna Fernandes

    This was especially a nice session for me because I know so little about teas! I'm glad we went together because you certainly know more. I love that you mentioned all the tips Snigdha suggested (espec. the cooking thing – how true is that! + the pouring of warm water over the tea bag bit to let the flavour infuse better), she really was quite warm a person. 😀 (I was wondering about the whole measuring temp. bit when I followed the instructions on my tea bag and I was wishing I had those nifty measuring meter devices bakers use but I totally didn't think to use a thermometer. I'm dumb! Haha.)

  • Roanna Fernandes

    P.S. I think I am developing a tea accessory fetish, like you! Now, I want that tea tin from The Home Label, a set of glass tea cups and saucers (and white glossy ceramic ones, but both dainty and petite), a tea-cosy and what-not! 🙁 :-/

  • My tea obsession started sometime last year & like most obsessions I've read incessantly, hence the random knowledge. I'm not even sure about whether what I know is actually right, so I avoid dispensing any info, for most part. Snigdha was inspiring to be about, & definitely very warm (& bubbly? Or is that too cheesy? But she was sweet + cheery). My mom told me to tell you, please don't use a regular medical thermometer as it doesn't go that high, it'll burst & you'll have mercury everywhere. My aunt did that in our home many years ago, she used one of my mom's thermometers to check the chocolate fudge. Thermometer shattered & it all had to be thrown out, I think it permanently scarred my mom 😛
    A candy thermometer or meat thermometer should work fine.

  • I know the feeling. I feel very strongly attracted to that tea tin from the home label, the only thing that's stopping me is that it's a bit pricey & I'm telling myself I don't need it & can't really justify the purchase. A part of me is secretly hoping it goes out of stock soon so the temptation will go away, I'm so weak. 🙁

  • Vivienne Z

    These look so good! I especially adore the elephant on the packaging. I wonder what moon white tea is. Did you try that one? If only they weren’t pricey…I’m hoping someone will gift me some of these, they look really good!

  • Vivienne Z

    These look so good! I especially adore the elephant on the packaging. I wonder what moon white tea is. Did you try that one? If only they weren't pricey…I'm hoping someone will gift me some of these, they look really good!

  • Oh dear that sounds sooo good. Do you mean that you should always pour water over the bag?? In that case I’ve been doing it wrong my whole life!

    • Haha yes Angie. I didn’t know that until recently too, in India we tend to drink a lot of black tea (chai-style, with milk) but we always boil the tea, apparently that’s a no-no… I live & learn!

  • Angie v Ek

    Oh dear that sounds sooo good. Do you mean that you should always pour water over the bag?? In that case I've been doing it wrong my whole life!

  • Haha yes Angie. I didn't know that until recently too, in India we tend to drink a lot of black tea (chai-style, with milk) but we always boil the tea, apparently that's a no-no… I live & learn!