Long-time readers of the blog – or anyone who has ever talked to me on social media or in real life – knows that I drink an insane amount of tea. I drink it when I’m cold, and I drink it when I’m hot. I drink it in the morning, and I drink it before I go to bed. You get the idea. I’ve never liked coffee (in my defence, I did my best to like it), even though I experimented with dozens of different flavours and blends.
And oddly enough, it runs in my family. None of us really like coffee, so I grew up with people who start and end the day with a nice cuppa – and it kind of became a ritual for me too. It’s my go-to drink whenever I want to curl up with a warm blanket and a good book, and I can’t imagine life and my reading routine any other way.
And since people are always curious what my favourite tea is or which blend in particular I would recommend to someone who is still quite new to the (wonderful) world of teas, I decided to dedicate today’s post to some of my favourite drinks. So, if you need a hot mug of tea to accompany your next read, here are my top 4 favourite teas I would definitely recommend!
1) Kir Royale
I discovered this infusion about six or seven years ago, and it’s been one of my favourites ever since. Kir Royale is a gorgeous mix of berries, sweet apple, and mango, with a gentle hint of strawberry and cream. I particularly like this on dark autumn and winter nights, when the rain is lashing against the window and you’re curled up under a warm blanket. It’s has a really comforting, fruity taste, and I absolutely love it.
2) Green tea
Green tea is another one of my favourites, and something I usually save for the morning or early afternoon. There are dozens of different flavours to choose from and although I’ve tried quite a few, I’m still experimenting with it.
Two flavours that I love and would definitely recommend, though, are jasmine and strawberry. Both of these go really well with the natural flavour of green tea (especially jasmine) and I drink both regularly.
The one thing I need to mention here, however, is that you need to be careful with it. I know it doesn’t seem as strong as black tea and you might think leaving that teabag (or loose leaves) in for another two minutes won’t hurt, but I wouldn’t recommend it.
I used to make this mistake a lot when I was experimenting with different flavours, and I had to learn this the hard way. Overbrewing green tea will make it taste quite strong and bitter, and because it contains caffeine just like any other tea (except for infusions), if you make it too strong and drink it too late at night, you’ll be having problems falling asleep.
So if you do try it, don’t leave your teabag in for more than 2-3 minutes. Or if you’re looking for an even lighter taste, try a gyokuro instead. Gyokuro is the main ingredient of the fine matcha green tea powder, and has a bright yet silky and very subtle taste.
3) White tea
White tea, for me at least, is quite similar to green tea (although white tea is slightly gentler and sweeter) and again, there are so many different flavours that I’m still trying to find the best one. The two I enjoyed the most so far were plain, unflavoured white tea, and white tea with cherry flavour – both are brilliant.
It has slightly less caffeine than green tea, but the same rule applies to brewing times: try not to leave it in for too long or the tea will be too strong and bitter. As an added bonus, white tea is supposed to help you lower your cholesterol, reduce the risk of cancer and enhance weight loss as well.
Elderflower is kind of a family favourite for us, and my mum picks the flowers and makes the tea herself every year. (Elderflower cordial is also delicious, by the way, especially in summer!) However, for some odd reason I find it quite hard to find this here in the UK and I still don’t know why. I’ve seen it as an infusion, usually mixed with something else – e.g. Elderflower and Apple – but that’s not the same.
If you can find some, try elderflower on its own, with some honey and a slice of lemon or a little bit of lemon juice – it really is a lovely drink. And as a plus, because it’s caffeine-free, you can drink it right before going to bed as well!
Have you tried any of these yet? What are your favourite bedtime drinks?