Tea de France: week three

July 19, 2012

Stage 13, Saturday 14 July
Saint-Paul-Trois-Châteaux – Le Cap d’Agde, 217km
Winner: Andre Greipel (Lotto-Belisol)
Brew: Thé du Hammam
They say: “Inspired by a Turkish recipe using green tea, Thé du Hammam is a fruity blend which evokes the fragrances used to perfume the hamman [Turkish bath]: roses, green dates, red fruit and orange flower water. Sprinkled with flower petals in the purest of eastern traditions, the tea’s extraordinary fragrance features a subtle combination of Chinese green tea, celebrated for its freshness and thirst-quenching properties, and rich fruit aromas.”
We say: We found our Wiggins in the form of Margaret’s Hope – and now we’ve discovered the Chris Froome of tea. In Jen’s words, “It’s like walking into a sweetshop. But with your tongue.” A creamy, vanilla-like flavour with echoes of Earl Grey and a slightly tingly aftertaste, this is the least bitter of all the green teas we have had so far. It’s our number two tea, and it’s fruity. Our two tea fruity.

Stage 14, Sunday 15 July
Limoux – Foix, 191km
Winner: Luis Leon Sanchez (Rabobank)
Brew: Thé des Moines
They say: “Inspired by an ancient recipe created in a Tibetan monastery, Thé des Moines is a rare blend with a unique flavour. Legend tells how the monks would prepare this blend of tea, plants and flowers in the greatest of secrecy. After several days of soaking, the leaves were carefully plucked out and put to one side. By this mysterious alchemy the monks turned the tea into gold and gave Thé des Moines its exceptional scent.”
We say: Did someone say something about punctures and total chaos on today’s stage? I can’t say we noticed too much as we were becalmed by the perfume of this black and green tea blend. An earthy, slightly floral taste. A delight.

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