HUDSON – If you are a foodie and want to be on trend, you need to have the following in your tea canisters: Rooibos, Darjeeling and Matcha. These days, those three are the most popular and in demand at Verdigris Tea in Hudson.
“They’re just the tip of the iceberg in teas,” says Kim Bach, Verdigris’ owner. “Even though there are thousands, probably millions of teas, a good percentage of our customers want one of those three.” But this expert in tea is eager to expand the tastes of her customers through her new Tea Classes.
Beginning on Saturday, February 23rd, Bach will be leading a class in The A,B,Cs of Tea. She has chosen three regions to feature: 2/23 – Indian Teas, 3/23 – So. African Teas and 4/20 – Japanese Teas. Each class will include what she calls ‘show and smell’, followed by the techniques of brewing different teas, analyzing the leaves and learning how to describe the taste. Bach will distribute pages of descriptive words and ask the participants to decide what each tea tastes like. “It helps with distinguishing the nuances among different flavors,” she says.
For many years Bach‘s mother had a tea shop in Park City, Utah. After she closed that store, Bach took over the business, moving it to Hudson in 2007. Since then, the shop owner has developed an even larger appreciation of teas – and a larger inventory. “I have the benefit of choosing from among the 150 selections we have here. And we’re also bringing in new selections all the time”.
Those new varieties are what make the tea business so fascinating. “There are endless ways to blend. Endless ways to roast leaves and a huge variety of finishes,” Bach says. “That’s what makes a class so useful. Customers can really learn the ins and outs of tea and know how to present their favorites in the best possible way.”
Classes take place at Verdigris Tea, 135 Warren St. in Hudson and are two hours long. The fee is $20.00 per class or $50.00 for all three, payable in advance. As part of the entry fee, each class member will receive 3 1-oz. packets of the evening’s featured teas. Reservations are required. Call the store to confirm a spot. 518.828.3139.
PHOTO CAPTION: Rooibos, a bark from the honey bush, comes exclusively in South Africa. Its smoky sweet flavor has taken the tea world by storm. South African teas, along with those from India and Japan, will be the topic of a three-part class on teas led by tea expert Kim Bach. Photo courtesy of Air France.