This tea includes organic white tea, organic cinnamon, organic pink peppercorn, organic marigolds, and natural and artifical flavors. You can really see all those peppercorns and marigolds in the dry tea leaves! The leaves also smell very strongly of butterscotch, but not so much that I couldn’t still make out the scent of white tea leaves as well. It was a divine scent!
Since this is a white tea, it is recommended to use water boiled at 175-185 degrees F, and use a shorter steeping time of 1-3 minutes. I boiled my water at 175 degrees F and steeped a Tbsp of leaves for about three minutes for my first steep. The cup steeps to a buttery yellow color, just what you would expect of a butterscotch-flavored tea!
Just the smell and color had me thinking of Wether’s Originals before I even took a sip! So when I took my first sip, I was surprised I wasn’t completely overpowered with the taste of butterscotch… it sort of snuck up on me quite suddenly after that first swallow in a burst of beautiful aftertaste and I was like “Aaaaaaah, there it is!” After that, the flavor was quite distinct, but again, I didn’t find it overpowering. Also, I found the flavor held up great on multiple resteeps — granted, I find green and white teas seem to hold up the best on reuse — and it wasn’t until a fourth cup that the butterscotch was getting pretty weak from a single infusion of leaves.
I think this is a great dessert tea, and though white tea does have caffeine, it has a very low amount when compared to black teas, so if you are a tea drinker that simply hates the taste of rooibos (which I find has a lot of good dessert-flavored varieties out there!) and wants a dessert tea for the evenings, this one might not be too bad to try out, as long as you don’t drink it too close to bedtime!
I can be picky with white tea unless it is flavored just right — I don’t find it too harsh like blacks, but just find the taste of white tea leaves too vegetative for my palette otherwise — and I can safely say this was perfect! So even if you are a person that typically doesn’t like white teas, I’d say don’t be afraid to give this one a try if you are a butterscotch lover; you may be pleasantly surprised!
During this month where I’ve been reviewing the sweet side of tea, I’ve also been talking about the sweet friendships that make me feel as full and warm as a belly full of tea, and that discussion wouldn’t be complete without Cody, who has appeared as a Sim in Blogaversary: Year One, The Thanksgiving Weekend Rescue Mission, and also as Bard Thoroman in Bibliotaph.
I got into Japanese animation — anime — sometime around the age of… twelve-ish? I’m not even sure why, except I can remember being really into everything related to Japanese culture, and I believe that came from being extremely into video games — which at the time were mostly a Japanese product — as a kid (I was born and raised a Nintendo kid in the 80s and early 90s). I believe that the “anime art” in my Nintendo Power magazines is probably what first made me get into it, and in my small town, in the early 90s… I felt like I was the only one into it! At that time, it wasn’t “everywhere” like it is now. I built up a collection on VHS by “snail-mail trading” with people online. At some point, I believe I had around 200 or so VHS tapes, each filled with 6 hours of anime. And these were in Japanese with English subtitles (or “raw”, meaning in Japanese with no subs) because I loathed (and still do to this day) English dubs with a passion.
I graduated high school in 2000, and shortly after that, I decided I wanted to run an anime club in my little town. I worked in a video rental store that had a small section of videos I saw rent out often enough, so I knew fans were out there. I just started asking those people that came through my line, “Would you be interested in a club for this stuff?” This was hard for me, because I’m a shy and introverted person by nature. But someone finally took the bait. That person was in the Japanese class at the local college, and spread the news there. That is where I first met Cody, and where the roots of our little local anime club started.
Our club, 2001, about to go to a Halloween-themed planetarium show in cosplay.
We would meet weekly and watch anime, play Dance Dance Revolution, and have fun holiday parties. Halloween was a time for a cosplay Halloween party with lots of goodies, but what was most memorable to me was our “Red Day” and “White Day” parties, which are quite appropriate for this month! In Japan, Valentine’s Day, February 14th, is still celebrated, though a bit differently: it is a time that girls give chocolate to show their interest in a boy. Home-made chocolate typically signifies a “special” interest, while store-bought chocolate (“giri-choco” or “obligation chocolate”) typically signifies a friendship, professional relationship, etc. Boys actually don’t give girls chocolate at all on Valentine’s Day! Instead, March 14th, exactly one month later, known as “White Day,” is the holiday for this; this is the day the boys give back to the girls with their own chocolate! So our anime club always had a party for each of these days, where the girls in the club would provide refreshments for the Red Day party, and the boys would provide refreshments for the White Day party! (And I must say, the guys out-did us every time!)
With time, the club eventually all moved on to different things, though Cody is recently starting up a new one. I however have decided, at my age, the noise of being around such a large group doesn’t do very well for my head (not to mention the inevitable migraine-cancellations would make get-togethers difficult for me anyway). I find that now I prefer one-on-one or much smaller group interactions, or online groups, and have become pretty active in Twitch.tv communities, which provide a friendly chat environment but allow me to control the volume or simply duck out for the night and head to bed if my head is acting up. But there is something oddly satisfying that the club is seeing a resurrection again, all these years later!
Cody, dressed as Vash the Stampede from “Trigun,” 2001.
Not long ago Simlit writer CathyTea wrote this lovely post A Kindness Warrior Call to Action, and that is really the only way I could describe a friend like Cody. He’s the perfect embodiment of a Kindness Warrior. He just wants to spread happiness and kindness everywhere he goes. If you need someone to talk to about something, he listens. If you need help, he will go out of his way to help. He is always smiling. He has worked at the same library as me for years, and makes the most amazing cookies, which he brings in randomly just to spread that happiness around the workplace (remember the joke about Cody getting Employee of the Month from my short story Mastress Alita and the Tomb of Lost Tomes? Yup, that was totally a reference to the fact that he makes the best cookies around. He made me pumpkin cookies filled with Nutella for my last few birthdays which were divine!) He also works with a stuffed koala on his head… because it is cute. (Does there need to be any other reason for this?)
He was also my first reader back when I was on Livejournal and had no readers, and all that encouragement in “the early days” helped to keep me going! I see far too many stories give up within their first three months as the maintainer of the Stories and Legacies Index, and I can’t help but wonder if I would have ended up being “one of them” if I hadn’t had that little bit of early support when all my other friends wouldn’t touch anything “Sims” related. If only all those other authors had a Cody, too, maybe there wouldn’t be so many abandoned projects out there! He is the embodiment of a Kindness Bench, all rolled up in one person… and it is lovely when we get to sit down and share a pot of tea together!