Get ready for some gushing: this is a long overdue love letter to the tart and sweet, juicy blackcurrant flavour and the empire of teas, Twinings of London! I know, I know. I’m either embarrassingly clueless or just really, really, REALLY late to the party. In this case, I’m not afraid to admit that I’m a little bit of both. People have most likely been sipping away on this wonderful tea for eons while I’m here just raving about it now! Twinings of London has been around for what seems like an eternity (I read they are celebrating 300+ years and counting, good lord!) and aside from passing by and throwing very brief glances at their tea boxes in some supermarkets, I had never bought a box to try until now and this newfound love makes me all smiley and excited! It’s such a surreal feeling, one of those, “where have you been all my life?!” or for that matter, “where the heck have I been?!” moments when you realize that you so totally could have been learning about it and enjoying it sooner.
The love didn’t just poof into existence in a day though. It all started with the Twinings Tassimo T-Discs I saw at work late last year. Then I happened upon a beautiful magazine ad of a Twinings tea collection on a bookshelf. A gorgeous, beautiful tea collection! And finally, my fellow FBCer Heather Mulholland of Tea With Me did me in when she told me about her trip to the actual Twinings Tea Shop in London when we met at FBC2013. And then she went ahead and did one better: she sent me a sample of a lavender Earl Grey she had purchased from the shop in London. Well, colour me freakin’ ecstatic and say hello to a new tea obsession! As mortifying as it is to admit that Twinings was never part of my foodie/tea world until I snapped out of my cluelessness this year, I like to look on the bright side of things: there are SO MANY delicious flavours to Ooo and ahhh over and try and by golly I have the rest of my life to try them!
My first official box? Their blackcurrant! Over the last year I have truly fallen head over heels for the blackcurrant flavour all over again. Not only do I adore Bobbette & Belle’s blackcurrant/cassis macarons, but it also makes me feel all warm and fuzzy because the flavour itself brings back childhood memories.
When I was little, I couldn’t get enough of the Ribena blackcurrant juice drink my parents used to get from the Chinese supermarkets. I would feel so grown up lifting those heavy bottles all by myself, pouring some into a glass and diluting it with drinking water so it wouldn’t be too thick and concentrated. It was my favourite drink growing up and I would always enjoy it with my dad by my side as he loved it just as much as I did. Some kids thrive on milk. Others get a little addicted to soda. And then there are those who are more than content with juice boxes. Me? Ribean blackcurrant juice all the way, baby. For me, this is the love of tea and the nostalgia of my childhood all wrapped into one sweet and charming Twinings of London box and you can bet it will always be close to my heart well after the tea pouches are gone.
And for those of you who are wondering where this sweet little box came from, it came from one amazing supermarket chock full of European foods and goodies, a food emporium I’ll be posting about tomorrow. Stay tuned for my upcoming post on the European foodie powerhouse in town known as Yummy Market!