Thursday, January 21, 2010

Thursday Tea: jasmine and memories

Thursday Tea is a weekly meme hosted by Anastasia at Birdbrain(ed) Book Blog. To play along, all you need is some tea, a book, and the answers to these questions: what tea are you drinking (and do you like it)? What book are you reading (and do you like it)? Tell us a little about your tea and your book, and whether or not the two go together.

jasmine tea
When Henry arrived in the school kitchen that afternoon, there was a new face, though because it was turned toward a stack of beet-stained serving trays, he couldn't see much of it. But it was clearly a girl, probably in his grade, about his height; she was hidden behind long bangs and the black strands of hair that framed her face. She sprayed the trays with hot, steaming water and put them in the dish rack, one by one. As she slowly turned toward Henry, he noticed her slender cheekbones, her perfect skin, smooth and lacking in the freckles that mottled the faces of the other girls at the school. But most of all, he noticed her soft chestnut-brown eyes. For a brief moment Henry swore he smelled something, like jasmine, sweet and mysterious, lost in the greasy odors of the kitchen.
[p. 19, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford]
This mention from early in the book, which I am enjoying immensely by the way, inspired me to choose jasmine tea this evening. The jasmine tea I have on hand is Stassen Jasmine Green Tea from Sri Lanka.  Hot, refreshing and light, it suit my mood perfectly, and goes very well with this story of an older Chinese man remembering back on his unlikely friendship with a Japanese girl in Seattle during World War II.  Also pictured is my new limited edition New Year mug from Starbucks Japan which has an almost Chinese-inspired design this year.

What are you reading and/or drinking today?

The small print:  This book was received free of charge from the publisher for review purposes; the tea was received as a gift.  Link in this post to Amazon contains my Associates ID.  Any purchases made via this link earn me a very small commission.  For more information visit my About Page.


  1. That picture is great. I love that your Starbucks has cool themed mugs. I always end up buying the holiday mug - every year. God knows what I'm going to do with all of them.

    As for Jamie Ford's story - I'm so glad you're reading it. My review wont' go live until the 29th but I truly enjoyed that book! And being from Seattle, I could look around and really GO to some of the places within it - it was really neat.

  2. What a perfect match! I loved Hotel, and I can just imagine the warm and exotic feel of reading it while drinking jasmine tea.

  3. I've picked that book up twice at the store...sat and read it once...I need it!

  4. I really like oolong green tea. Though I like it, I find that the Japanese green tea has a lot of caffeine. Do you have the same experience?

  5. Such a lovely passage! I can almost see the scene with my eyes :) Makes me think of my own enamored encounters when I was a kid. And as it happens, I'm also quite drawn to the unfreckled and transluscent skin of East Asian women. There aren't as many Japanese girls here in our country as I wish there'd be, but there are many Filipino-Chinese (including myself) so I understand rather well the attraction of that kind of beauty.

    I've tried a really good cup of Jasmine tea in China, and it is indeed relaxing and soothing... This is quite a delightful post Tanabata :)    

  6. Oh no! Not another book for my wishlist?!

    I have some wonderful Chinese Chung Hao Jasmine at hand btw :)

  7. At my current job (which is at a museum, cataloguing the letters of a writer who passed away some years ago) I keep coming across mentions of jasmine tea, which is making me crave if! The writing lived in China for some years, and apparently it was her favourite. I don't think I've ever tried it, but I certainly want to.

  8. @Nymeth, hee I work at a museum too! :)) *waves*

    [ sorry to be off topic ;) ]

  9. Lena - My Starbucks mug collection is getting a bit out of control but I can't help myself from buying the New Year's one every year!
    How fun that you were able to go to some of the places mentioned in the book. If I ever get to Seattle I'm going to have to visit the Panama hotel!

    thekoolaidmom - It really was a perfect match. :)

    Janet - Yes, you do! I think you'd enjoy it.

    Ash - It's a fun design this year!

    Harvee - You could be right. I've not really compared them but I know that Japanese green tea seems quite high in caffeine.

    Mark David - It's a great scene, isn't it? Thanks for sharing how you related to that passage. :)

    gnoegnoe - Your jasmine tea sounds great! I don't think I knew that you worked in a museum (or I wasn't paying attention properly). And no need to apologize for going off topic. I don't mind. :)

    Nymeth - You should definitely try some jasmine tea sometime! It's got a very unique smell and flavour. Once you've had it you'll never forget it.


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