During my mom’s recent trip to NYC, one of her must-do’s was hitting Harney & Son’s in SoHo. She’s a big fan and introduced me to the world of loose tea with their Autumn tea, featuring a plentiful amount of dried cranberries.
When you visit their store, they have tins on the right-hand side of the store (of both loose tea and sachets) and there’s a tea bar of sorts on the left-hand side, where you can have them steep you a sample cup of whatever blend you’re contemplating. Beyond that, you can have them do the same for additional varieties for a small cost.
My ears perked up when the worker allowed us to sample their Paris tea, a fruity black tea with vanilla and caramel flavors, and a hint of lemony Bergamot. As I was sipping the tea (which I highly recommend – nice blend – different from your standard black tea, yet not too far removed), the worker mentioned it works great for infusing buttercream icing. Buttercream icing? Fascinated, I pushed him to describe more. Essentially, he said you would just heat the milk and steep the tea in it like you would if you were brewing it, except for you would then use the tea-infused milk to then make the frosting. Genius! Seeing I was quite intrigued, he went on to say their cafe sold them if I should want to try them.
And oh, trust me, I did.
I went over to find it was such a new item that they actually didn’t have it on the menu yet. They were served as a trio, so I found myself plunking down $7.25 for three small macaroons. One was of course their Paris tea. Another was their Sencha – Scent of Mountain tea, which was a form of green tea. The other was a rose tea, which I thought might be too floral for me (not a fan) but was actually soft enough to be a nice balance to the mix. As expected, the Paris was my favorite though. And what a great idea. I will definitely be trying this out in the future. What a great idea for scones!
What other interesting variations on icings have you seen? Anyone else tried tea-infused icing before?
Harney & Sons Soho – 433 Broome Street – 212.933.4853