I bought a lot of tea in Europe. Had to lug a separate carry-on on the plane home full of tea and teaware. The shincha from Copenhagen, the Goalpara from Amsterdam — my tea cabinet overfloweth. But the first tea I will be reordering, because I'm going through it like mad, is one I chanced upon in, of all places, Helsinki, Finland.
Robert's Coffee is a shop that started in Helsinki in 1987; now it's a chain across Scandinavia. (Sound familiar? The logo's even hunter green.) On our beautiful afternoon in Helsinki — possibly our favorite stop on this trip — we wandered into a shop just off the city's Esplanade boulevard. They offer a fine range of teas from around the world, and I bought a signature product, the Sir Robert's Blend. It's a mix of Chinese and Indian teas, with a heavy dose of Keemun. If you've read the blog this far, you know I'm a sucker for Keemun. This blend, with the Keemun spiciness and some other, rounder flavors — it's fantabulous. My favorite afternoon tea at present.
Coffee and teaware on display at the Design Museum in Helsinki.