Green Tea has a dirty little secret — and nothing can be done about it — and that secret is that real, hardcore, proper, unadulterated green tea has, what Janna calls, a “muskiness” that translates into meaning raw, pure-brewed, strong green tea… smells like urine.
I said it.
My favorite drink in the whole world smells — and probably tastes like — uric ammonia, and yet I still can’t swallow enough of the stuff throughout the day to keep me satisfied and quenched because green tea, in it’s organic state, is hardy, pure, musky, magical and powerful and I need its healing warmth in my body every single day.
The problem with modern, mainstream, green tea is tea merchants know their product smells like pee, and so they try to cover that stank by adding jasmine or lemongrass or mint or other flowery-scented oral accoutrements — and that makes it really hard to just find hardcore, non-flowery, or otherworldly flavor-enhanced, green tea. Lipton and Bigelow make “plain” green tea for purchase in grocery stores, but you have to use two or three teabags in one cup to get any sense of how green tea is intended to be brewed and bitten.
Believe me, I’m not tea snob. I just want to fall back to the basics and I don’t want to have to pay extra for it or go out of my way to get it.
I guess Americans can’t take the smell or taste of real green tea, so we are spoon-fed these pale-tasting imitators. There’s nothing more annoying than going out to dinner at a Vegan restaurant, ordering green tea, and getting back a weak pot of pale water that smells like flowery petals. When you try to order authentic green tea without anything added to it, you are met with blank stares.
Starbucks and Celestial Seasonings are the worst, though. Green tea with mint? Really? Why? I’m not a big mint fan for any reason, and the idea of having mint mixed with the urinal muskiness of my preferred pee green tea is enough to make me puke.
What can we do? How can we make Starbucks and all the other vendors realize we just want plain, old, smelly green tea — and we want it fast and strong and RIGHT NOW? I don’t want to be one of “those people” who is forced to bring my own teabags into my outside life, but I’m beginning I will need to start, because the world is getting stinkier with added scents and spicy flowers instead of remaining preternaturally urine-worthy in more ways than taste alone.