Techniques » Purchasing & Storing Tea
Did you know that green, black, oolong and white teas all come from the same plant? Yes, wonder shrub Camellia Sinensis (tea plant) produces all of these, but it's the oxidation level of leaves that determines the style of tea. Listen to Tea Sommelier Cynthia Gold describe how to recognize good-quality loose leaf tea. Learn proper tea storage to achieve maximum shelf life. But most of all (Cynthia preaches), "don't be a tea collector — drink fresh tea!"
Although she didn't realize it at the time, Cynthia Gold was one of the first American chefs to embrace tea not only as a beverage, but to use also as an element in cooking. Her tea programs caught the attention of the global tea community and resulted in invitations to Asia where she would spend time in tea fields sharing in the knowledge of renowned tea experts. For Cynthia, tea is more than a drink to have when feeling unwell. It is a powerful botanical with a complexity akin to wine. Cynthia has co-authored cookbook, Culinary Tea: More than 150 Recipes Steeped in Tradition, and currently serves as the Tea Sommelier for L'Espalier where she develops tea cocktails, house blends and encourages the use of tea as an ingredient in food and drinks alike.