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The Benefits of Drinking Tea: Body, Mind and Soul- Thursday, March 30, 2017

Why do we drink tea? For some, it’s a means to unwind, for others, it’s a vehicle for health: to keep the body healthy, to maintain mental focus, and the list goes on. No matter which way you look at it, the benefits of drinking tea reach much farther than you’d first expect. Physically and mentally, tea continues to be a positive force in the world today. While the uses of tea have varied over the years, the benefits remain timeless. 

Loose Leaf Tea

10 Physical Benefits of Drinking Tea:

  • Anti-Aging Qualities
  • UV protection
  • Increases Muscle Endurance/Metabolism
  • Lowers Blood Pressure/Cholesterol
  • Strengthen Teeth/Bones
  • Anti-Inflammatory
  • Immune System Boost/Cold Relief
  • Hydration
  • Improves Digestive Heath
  • Freshens Breath

7 Mental Benefits of Drinking Tea:

  • Stress Relief
  • Fights Anxiety/Depression
  • Sleep Aid
  • Energy Boost
  • Increased Mental Alertness
  • Boosts Memory
  • Mental Clarity

The Types of Tea and What Makes Them Unique

Hot Tea in a Cup

How can you tell which tea is right for you? 

The answer to this is determined by your preferences: ultimately, which flavor profile and experience are you seeking? 

While all tea comes from the same plant, not all tea tastes the same. Just like any fine wine, tea flavor profiles will vary based on the following conditions of the Camellia sinensis plant: the type of soil, the weather conditions, the upkeep, the neighboring plants, all leading to the way the leaves are processed. 

The Oxidation of Tea and Endless Flavor Possibilities

From white, to green, to oolong, to black, to pu’erh, the way your tea leaves are processed will predict which tea ends up in your cup.

The biggest game-changer is the oxidation and/or fermentation of the leaves—how long tea leaves are allowed to be exposed to oxygen and microbes once they’ve been harvested from the tea plants.

The longer the leaves are exposed to oxygen, the darker the leaves become, resulting in deeper flavors.  Tea masters use many different methods to create and control oxidation:

  • Speed Up/Start Oxidation
    • Rolling
    • Shaping
    • crushing
  • Slow Down/Stop Oxidation:
    • Steaming
    • Firing
    • Roasting

Fermentation, as done with pu’erh tea, takes oxidation a step further. A solid-state fermentation over long periods of time (sometimes years) allows for the molds, bacteria and yeasts on the harvested leaves of the tea plant to create an end product with truly unique flavor profiles. 

Getting to Know the Loose Leaf Teas You Drink

Tea Leaves

Black Loose Leaf Tea

To get the boldness of Black Tea, the Camellia sinensis leaves are fully oxidized before being heat-processed and dried. The longer exposure to oxygen creates the deep brown to black coloring of the leaf and gives the tea its stronger, full-bodied flavor profiles. 

Common Flavor Profiles

What you’ll taste: bold, rich, malty, herbaceous, spicy, savory, sweet, bitter, smooth, smoky, earthy, nutty, metallic, citrus, caramel, leather, fruity, honey.

Types of Black Tea

Green Loose Leaf Tea

Green Tea results from the instant heating of the leaves after harvest—by pan firing or steaming—then immediately starting to dry the leaves. This process prevents the leaves from oxidizing too much, allowing the tea to maintain a green leaf with refreshing flavors.

Common Flavor Profiles

What you’ll taste: grassy, earthy, mellow, sweet, vegetal, seaweed-like, spinach, basil, lettuce, lush, wheat grass, citrus, herbaceous.

Types of Green Tea

Oolong Loose Leaf Tea

Oolong Tea leaves are partially oxidized, and can vary depending on the tea master in charge. Because of this process variation, the overall oxidation of Oolong teas will range from 8% to 80%—resulting in flavor profiles that fall anywhere between light green tea (less oxidized) to full-bodied black tea (more oxidized).

Common Flavor Profiles              

What you’ll taste: sweet, woodsy, fruity, berry, peach, honey, mineral rock, floral, melon, orchid, herbaceous, hearty, grassy, toasty, intense, pungent.

Types of Oolong Tea

  • Big Red Robe
  • Tie Guan Yin
  • Oolong Formosa
  • Shui Xian
  • Dancong
  • Pouchong
  • Ali Shan

White Loose Leaf Tea

White Tea gets its soft flavors and aromas from the minimal processing the leaves undergo. As soon as the buds are plucked, they are set out to wither and air dry in the sun (or a carefully controlled environment). This natural drying process decreases the overall oxidation, allowing the white tea to maintain a mostly delicate leaf.

Common Flavor Profiles

What you’ll taste: floral, grassy, honey, fruity, melon, apricot, vanilla, chocolate, citrus, herby, mild, subtle, sweet, green beans, vegetal, snow pea, spicy, peachy, ginger, cloves, pepper, cucumber, biscuit.

Types of White Tea

  • Bai Hao Yin Zhen (Silver Needle)
  • Bai Mudan (White Peony)
  • Monkey Picked White Tea
  • Darjeeling White Tea

Pu’erh Tea

Tea masters ensure the Pu’erh Tea’s soft, woodsy quality through the fermentation of the tea leaves after being oxidized, dried, and rolled. Its gradual fermentation and maturation with time ensures a soothing, unique flavor profile that cannot be matched by other teas.

Common Flavor Profiles

What you’ll taste: earthy, woodsy, mushrooms, herbs, leather, hay, tobacco, musty antique store, barnyard, damp forest, dates, sweet.

Types of Pu’erh Tea

  • Raw (Sheng)
  • Ripened (Shou) Pu'erh

Herbal Loose Leaf Tea

Most herbal teas are a mix of leaves, flowers, seeds, roots, and bark that come together to create a tea-like drink. But some herbal teas add essential oils, or other elements of herbs, to tea leaves to infuse flavors and aromas.

Common Flavor Profiles

What you’ll taste: sage, lemon, rose, chamomile, mint, rosemary, lavender, peppermint, savory, marjoram, calendula, floral, sweet, honey, fruity.

(Some of the Many) Types of Herbal Tea

Get to Know Your Tea with Colonel De

For anyone, be they first-time tea drinkers or seasoned tea enthusiasts, it’s important to explore your options and taste the possibilities. Get to know your teas. Search for new flavor profiles. Be adventurous. From its origins in Eastern Asia to its influence in today’s world, tea is a cornerstone of life as we know it: refreshing, unifying, and timeless. And, while there are many benefits to drinking tea, the most important benefit of all is its flavor.

At Colonel De, we uphold the importance of what it means to enjoy a moment: from the first sip, to the first bite. No matter the tea you drink, it’s all about the experience you’re searching for.

What do you want your day to taste like? Explore today.

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Cajun Game Day Snacks and Dinners- Thursday, October 13, 2016

Football season is here and what comes to mind during football more than FOOD. Chicken wings, popcorn, pasta, dips, and more!  Nothing makes all of your favorite game day snacks and meals taste better than Colonel De’s Cajun blackening season. It’s a nice blend of smoky Cajun flavors with a little kick of heat to it.

Cajun Game Day Snacks

A football favorite in households across the USA is chicken wings.  Season up some Cajun rubbed wings for the perfect football game snack.  It’s great to sprinkle the seasoning on top of dips for that extra little kick, your popcorn for an after dinner snack, and it’s also the perfect blend for all kinds of dinners you can make any night for the family.

Colonel De's Cajun Blackening Seasoning

Incorporate Cajun Into A Meal

You can add Colonel De’s Cajun blackening seasoning to:

  • Pasta dishes (perhaps spaghetti in a Cajun cream sauce)
  • Seafood (great with salmon!)
  • Chicken (wings, as mentioned above)
  • Sausage (which can be mixed with that Cajun pasta dish above)
  • Anything else that comes to mind!

If you buy our cajun blackening seasoning or any of Colonel De’s herbs and spices,  make sure you keep the bottle when it’s all gone, because you can bring it back in and get refill for a discounted price!

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Jim Dandy Family BBQ Spot- Tuesday, February 9, 2016

At Colonel De we love great BBQ, and Jim Dandy's has some of the best in town.  We've teamed up with Founder Jim Emig to pair fresch choice meats and gourmet herbs and spices, to make that happen!  See the full spot, below.

Transcript:

Hi I'm with Colonel De of Colonel De's Herbs and Spices.  De what do you get when you combine the worlds greatest spices, yours, with fresh choice meats?  Gosh I don't know Jim what do you get?  You get Jim Dandy BBQ.  We have a brisket and two tri-tips, how did you spice these?  Well on the brisket we put a little bit of cowboy rub, and on the tri-tips we have a wonderful mixture of garlic and it just tastes fantastic.  Come visit us at JimdandyBBQ.com.  Ooh yes it's good.

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Mulling Spot- Monday, February 8, 2016

In this spot, Storm Bennett and Colonel De discuss Mulling at Hagedorn Appliances.  Mulling allows you to take extra flavor from spices and infuse them into ale, cider or wine.  This can really warm you up on a cool winter night, and we think it will be something you can enjoy for years to come!  See the video below.

Transcript:

Hi i'm Storm Bennett with Colonel De.  We're talking about his spices at Hagedorn Appliances and Mulling right, what is that?  Mulling, it's a way of taking some extra flavors from your spices and infusing them in either cider, ale or wine.  It adds a wonderful warmth, and on a cold winters day there's nothing better to warm your soul than some mulled wine, cider or ale.  Get mulled right now, at colonelde.com.

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Chili Spot- Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Do you like Chili?  So do we!  You can make so many different kinds of chili with a variety of spice levels and flavors.  Colonel De has all of the herbs, spices and learning tools you could ever need to make great chili, right on his website!

See all of the products De has from chili flakes, to chili powder and even whole chili's, here.

In the below spot, you'll find De talking with Storm Bennett about Chili at Hagedorn Appliances.  Be sure to explore the Colonel De youtube channel for great how to videos and more!

Transcript:

Hi everybody it's Storm Bennett here with The Colonel, Colonel De at Hagedorn appliances talking about chili and it's chili season isn't it?  It's Chili time man, time to get the ol' chili pot out and get it ready for the game.  There's Cincinnati chili, we all know about that, but all across America there are different kinds of chili's.  They're based on different kinds of ingredients.  You can go from sweet to dark, to hot, to regular.  It doesn't matter, it's all chili, it's all good.  Find your taste at colonelde.com.

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