Shou Pu’erh and Cathay Pacific

1 No tags Permalink 0

14936416474_650ae311e1_cI love a brand collaboration that involves tea…

15371164087_eda3eb7f22_c…especially when it’s one of my favorite airlines and a tea company I adore.

Remember our visit to Red Blossom Tea Company* in San Francisco? (On another note, we are overdue for SF trip!)

15554496251_7fd047d60d_cCathay Pacific hired Red Blossom to create this customized tea package of a 2006 shou/cooked pu’erh.

15370549109_3e1d4f3e9d_cIt’s the Wild Leaf Lincang from Yunnan, China (where I was just last week…crazy how time passes).

15371038088_30b5e3c848_cIt’s got a deep, malty sweetness, and a finish that just keeps going.

*One of the owners recently from Red Blossom Tea just opened a new tea shop in SF called Song Tea. We tried some of their teas at Go Get Em Tiger in LA over the summer.

P.S. Unrelated, but a very lovely Sunday read ^-^

Notes from Hong Kong

11131908445_ac94aafa8d_cLittle notes as I type from the InterContinental Hong Kong.

I’ve been traveling in Japan, Taiwan, and China for the last five weeks. I love spending the last few days of each Asia trip in Hong Kong, holing up (warm bath, fluffy bathrobe, in for the night!) in a great hotel and taking care of life admin. Getting organized and reevaluating goals. Mapping out what’s next. It’s easier to do these things when I’m not in NYC or Honolulu…seeing things from a distance. I might travel for tea, hotels, and dessert, but also to rebalance ^-^

Screen Shot 2014-11-06 at 1.24.06 PM

1 | Super thank you to Alice and Kristy for this feature on A Standard of Living. You guys are amazing.

11883474053_590606ac6f_c2 | A few of my favorite local Honolulu restaurants on Condé Nast Traveler. Excited to go back home for the holidays ^-^

14500641440_a22fa5a44f_c3 | A must-read book on this history of pu’erh tea.

12975723553_cc579b0a9e_c4 | Nick and Andy of Eco-Cha in Taiwan (see you guys in spring!) launched an Indiegogo campaign to purchase Mr. Lin’s first winter harvest in Lugu, Taiwan (home of Dong Ding oolong). They’ve surpassed their funding goals, but a little extra never hurt.

15709800392_e8d56e310a_c5 | I’m good about not accumulating too much “stuff”…but these Kaikado tea caddies are beautiful.

Afternoon Tea | Ritz-Carlton Kyoto

15560841905_67048843c6_cOnce in a while I’ll come across a truly memorable afternoon tea.

15511614299_dbb3cccdeb_cIt’s rare when food, service, presentation, atmosphere, and the tea itself are perfectly aligned…

14940678283_7e497e754e_c…and when that happens…I am happy for days. Such was the case at the newly opened Ritz-Carlton Kyoto ^-^

15374237709_80610353c7_cThe property collaborated with Pierre Hermé for their classic tea set (when hotels do afternoon tea collaborations, it’s usually a limited edition run). There’s also a Pierre Hermé boutique in the property, so you can count on a fresh selection of sweets.

15375213360_8a2c7a677d_cThe tea list is split into multiple sections, but you want to focus on the Seasonal Teas. Four selection for autumn:

  •  Momijigari | black tea with apples, apricots, and autumn leaves
  •  Moonlight Osmanthus | black tea with osmanthus
  •  Chestnut | green tea and chestnuts
  •  El Nino | black tea and chocolate

We had the Moonlight Osmanthus (detailed post on osmanthus soon!) and Chestnut tea…both so full-flavored and delicate.

14940676513_5585684e03_cAnd then onto the savories!

15561677912_f9f62560b5_cFoie gras parfait with pears

15374836757_e8e6d906fd_cBeets, ricotta, and roast beef with lemon confit

15560849995_fd5044763c_cSalmon, sweet potato, sour cream with olive, and ikura

15374230539_1a074c8757_cScallop and eggplant with vanilla, ginger, and caviar

14940674493_85567a3b17_cMushroom tartlette

15558163981_33055a9020_cThe scones are baked by the Pierre Hermé team, one each of the raisin and carrement chocolat.

15558169181_fc9135a14f_cComes with clotted cream and a seasonal confit.

15375199430_a0a6b12207_cAre you ready for the cakes? This is the best part ^-^

They did a number of Pierre Hermé signatures in miniature:

  • Ibiza | pistachio dacquoise biscuit, orange mascarpone cream, orange marmalade, praline mousse, and nougatine
  • Plaisir Sucré | hazelnut dacquoise biscuit, praline crisps, milk chocolate ganache and chantilly
  • Ispahan | rose macaron, rose petal cream, raspberries, and lychee

15558166111_fc8e860ee1_cChocolate bonbons (ginger and dark chocolate) and macarons (lemon and vanilla).

15374228709_9e75916873_cFinishing with raspberry sorbet. Perfection ^-^

Snapshots from Tokyo

15371002298_a494654d1a_cA quick recap of moments, memories, and meals from Tokyo ^-^

14936406804_82167081f2_cStraight from Narita airport to Kohaku for turtle soup and taro with truffles…

15533420366_526f211d30_c…and six hours later…waking up for a Japanese breakfast at Mandarin Oriental Tokyo.

15505445479_d074d4de63_cWe met Mihoko (so happy to meet!) for lunch (wish you were there, Hanya ^-^) and spent the afternoon exploring…

15371492130_6572c25093_c…before afternoon tea back at the Mandarin

15371465020_5e245e5edf_c…and dinner at Sushisho Masa.

15371238730_e0030891a1_cMidnight cocktails at Bar High Five (my first time trying a Bloody Mary o_O)

15533147896_a3d7d29969_cThe next day we visited Omotesando Koffee for granitas, shakeratos and this…

15533145006_c4cfb83f53_c…hot baked custard (imagine an extra custard-y canelé in cube form).

15370838857_6c629dd833_cWe also came across a location of Doughnut Plant, so had to try an Uji matcha doughnut.

15554160091_5567448421_cEarly evening at New York Bar at the Park Hyatt…

15667508386_13dfa1c574_c…what a magical place ^-^

15557664482_5e89ed4a3c_cDinner at Sushi Shin…

14936051614_afb625e790_c…and more cocktails at Star Bar.

Next stop, Kyoto ^-^