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Tea Review: Tulsi Infusion

January 14, 2009

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Teatulia’s Tulsi Infusion is very different from any other tea or tisane that I have tasted. Inexplicably, for me the scent of the brewed liquor is evocative of childhood summers and corn on the cob oozing with butter. This is a little odd because the tea does not taste anything like corn or butter or sunshine. The taste is difficult to describe as I can’t think of anything more reasonable to compare it to, but I really enjoyed its silky, warm flavor.

This tea’s fascinating flavor comes from just two ingredients: black tea from Teatulia’s gardens in Northern Bangladesh and organically grown holy basil. The flavors of the black tea and the holy basil mesh with an unexpected synchronicity, resulting in a brew that tastes like neither of them individually. The tea is silken on the tongue and leaves a nice round lingering feel in the mouth. This is a tea that I would recommend to anyone with an adventurous palate.

Holy Basil (Ocimum tenuiflorum), also called Tulsi, is an important herb in Ayurvedic medicine, used in the treatment of a broad range of ailments. Tulsi is also extremely important within Hindu tradition as a sacred plant incarnation of the Divine.

What distinguishes Tulsi from other basils is its peerless religious significance. Tulsi is Divinity. It is regarded not merely as a utilitarian God-send, as most sacred plants are viewed to be, but as an incarnation of the Goddess Herself. Thus, when one bows before Tulsi, one bows before the Goddess. Of course, denominations differ in their approach. Generally, worshipers of Vishnu will envision Tulsi as Lakshmi or Vrinda; devotees of Rama may view Tulsi as Sita; while Krishna bhaktas revere Her as Vrinda, Radha or Rukmani.

– excerpted from this article on Hinduism Today.

The lovely image below is of the Prayer House at Tetulia Guest Estate in Bangladesh, taken from Teatulia’s photostream on Flickr.

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