Friday, June 17, 2016

Monocle Tea Products, Tea Infuser Tumbler

Monocle Tea Description:
Perfect for on the go tea drinkers.  This tumbler will keep 15.2 oz of your favorite tea hot on a cold day (or will also keep it cold on a hot day, funny how that works).

Sample provided by Monocle Tea Products

My Review:
I plan on having a few more pictures than normal in this post. The tumbler reviewed requires a bit more headroom than I usually deal with so I moved my operation on to my porch. I'm still learning my new camera and today's lesson learned is about too much back lighting. I will apologize in advance for the dark images.

Devin at Monocle Tea Products contacted The Everyday Tea Blog to see if I might like to try out their tumbler. It was ordered from Amazon and as usual with them arrived very quickly. It came in a box stuffed with air-filled pillows for protection.

Opening the actual product box I found the tumbler in a bubble wrap sleeve with a foam pad at top and bottom. The tumbler probably would ship safely if they just slapped a label on its box but I feel better knowing we didn't have to find out.

The tumbler is made of double-walled borosilicate glass. I have other products, including my French Press that I use daily, made from this glass. It is strong and holds up well under most daily usage. It is glass however so treat it as such.

The tumbler holds around 15 oz. The double-walled construction helps keep hot drinks hot and cold drinks cold.

The infuser is of two part construction. There is a basket to hold your tea leaf and a screw on cap. The assembled infuser rests on a lip inside the tumbler to hold it securely.

The tumbler can also be used without the basket. Using the infuser lid only works for fruit infusions or grandpa style sipping where the leaf floats freely in the water and additional water is added throughout the day. This is apparently a common practice used by average Chinese tea drinkers.

The exterior of the tumbler lid is bamboo. The interior is plastic.

A neat touch on the lid is the N.O. and mustache engraving. My first thought when seeing it was "No mustaches?" Why? Turns out Devin is all about the mustache. The NO actually stands for his home New Orleans.

Nothing says a proper cuppa like a monocle, a dapper mustache and New Orleans... I'm joking. In truth wherever you are is the perfect place for a cup, make that a tumbler, of tea.

Now taking the tumbler for a test drive I chose a sample of Nonpareil Te Gong Huang Shan Mao Feng Green Tea from Teavivre. It is a beautiful crisp green tea and always a pleasure to sip.  

The entire sample went into the basket. One comment here - Devin is aware of this typo error, but on the insert packed in the box it says to use one oz of tea per 8 oz of water. Anyone accustomed to loose leaf should know better, but just in case - Devin intended this to read one small scoop per 8 oz. The Teavivre sample is 10g or roughly two scoops by my measure.

I used water heated to 185 per sample instructions, secured the basket and lid in the tumbler, added water, and secured the lid.

The steep was not timed closely. Maybe it was 3-5 minutes maybe it might have been a little longer. It was entirely too gorgeous outside to be distracted by timers. Fortunately this tea can handle abusive brewing even by a tea barbarian like me.

I removed the lid and the basket. I had to sniff the leaf - it is kind of my thing. It was grassy and citrus with orchid notes. Simply awesome.

I probably should have sat the basket on the lid. I hadn't really planned ahead for it and I'm a guy, so on the table it goes. Just don't tell my wife. After a few sips the level was low enough to be below the basket so I put it back in.

The tea stayed hot long enough that I removed the lid so it would cool off. I am one of those weird people that prefer my tea warm. So I am not the most reliable person to ask but in my opinion the drink stayed very hot for a long time.

The tumbler presented no problems when sipping. The tea tasted great out of it.

I can't think of anything negative to say about the Monocle Tumbler. The closest to a complaint is that it is very tall and narrow. This is actually on purpose so that the tumbler will fit in a standard cup holder.

The overall look is sharp and in fact the logo and lid made me smile. The lid may say NO, but I say YES.
You can find the Monocle Tea Infuser Tumbler here on Amazon.