Tea Mixology Class with Bluebird Tea

I've become a bit of a tea nut recently, what with my Bluebird Tea obsession and trying to cut back of the caffeine. Apparently tea is what you buy me now that bath bombs are out of the equation, and a month or so back I finally traded in my voucher and did my Tea Mixology Class.

When I went the classes were only held at the store in Brighton, but they've now stared doing them in Bristol and Tunbridge Wells stores too. They do tend to get booked quickly sadly, but it is very enjoyable once you've managed the wait. Drinks flow freely - both in the form of any tea from the tea wall and tea cocktail blends, whichever floats your boat!

The idea of the class is to mix your own tea blends, but in order to do that you need to know the basics of tea first. I found this really interesting as I thought I had an idea but I really had no clue. All "tea" comes from one plant,  Camellia Sinensis, and the different types are to do with the different places they are grown, not different varieties like I thought. I don't know about you but I thought it was a bit like wine - different grape types and all that. Not at all, White, Green, Black, Oolong and Pu-reh tea's are different parts and/or processing techniques of the same plant. Matcha is the same, although we use the name more for the processing method than how its grown, which is how you get Rooibos Matcha. While we think of it as tea, Rooibos and Mate are actually a totally different plant and then of course you have Herbal and Fruit tea's, which are really infusions but that is semantics. A lot of tea tasting (or "slurping") goes on as you learn the differences.

Essentially this class is separated into three parts - the history of tea and learning what they look like and how to identify the different types by sight, tasting the various types of tea and then blending your own. That last one is the real fun. A tea blend needs to have at least two ingredients - a base tea and at least one blending herb. After some recipe ideas and basic guidelines from the lovely Becky and being presented with three bags to make three blends, we were let loose on the counter top full of various tea blending goodies. Each tea gets a label advising how long and at what temperature to brew. There is also 10% off anything you decide to teat yourself with on the day of the class.

Its a hard one to describe in detail, as it is essentially making tea with the addition of being given all about the information on what tea actually is. The experience is good, hands on and instructional, and despite knowing a lot after my six months of tea subscription I still found it interesting to be told the details while also being able to taste what I was told were the defining characteristics of that type. It was really great to identify what it is I like in a tea and then make my own blends that fit that idea.

Were my blends good? Well that is between me and my taste buds, but it was well worth the making and I would recommend it to any tea fan.

Bluebird Tea Mixology Classes are £40, with group discount available.
My class was a family gift, all opinions are my own.

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