It's tea time! January is National Hot Tea Month, and Koi in Evanston is the perfect place to steep and sip a warm, wintry beverage. Koi's thoughtfully selected tea program consists of five different categories: green; black; brick (Pu-Erh); scented; and oolong. The tea menu, outlined below, provides tasting notes to procure the perfect cup of teafor any palate.
Koi is open for lunch, dinner and weekend dim sum brunch. The complete menus may be viewed here.
Organic Tea Selections
Autumn Harvest Cran Apple Tea $6 Scented, naturally caffeine free with wonderful blend of cranberries and apples. Organic Rishi Blend
Moonlight Jasmine Blossom $6
This wonderful green tea is scented 8 times with Jasmine flowers and hand-tied with a single silk thread. The flowers literally bloom next to the tea. A wildflower from the Okinawa mountains is inserted into the tea ball prior to drying, to enhance the scent and presentation. Okinawa, Japan
Raspberry Green, Organic Fair Trade Green Tea $4 Smooth, steamed green tea blended with tart hibiscus and succulent raspberries. This blend is sweet, jammy and rich with a character that lends itself to tasty hot or icedtea. Goes well with a squeeze of lemon or pomegranate juice. Organic Rishi Blend
China Breakfast, Organic Fair Trade Black Tea $5 Our breakfast tea of choice has a robust and flavorful taste profile that is rich and malty with subtle notes of chocolate. China Breakfast is a pure Dian Hong style black teaharvested from Yunnan’s antique tea trees. Yunnan, China
Wuyi Oolong, Organic Oolong Tea $5
The Wuyi Mountains are the birthplace of oolong tea in which this classic, dark-roasted oolong is harvested. We create a vintage blend each year from multiple lots of specially roasted Wu Yi varietals to create our signature Wuyi oolong flavor. After blending and curing, we re-roast to make it even and stable. Wuyi has a smooth, rich body with a classic roasted aroma and sweet finish, accented by sweet notes of raisin sugar, honeysuckle and roasted barley. Fujian, China
Genmaicha, Organic Japanese Green Tea $5 The original type of genmaicha was developed hundreds of years ago by Zen monks who mixed green tea with the browned rice stuck to the bottom of their cauldrons. Soon after, roasted rice was blended with sencha or bancha by tea vendors throughout Japan where it became a popular household green. Genmaicha is smooth and mild with a warming and toasty aroma. Japan
Serene Dream, Organic Caffeine-Free Herbal Blend $5 A wonderful balance of botanicals and aromatic flowers with a smooth body. Organic Rishi Blend
Tangerine Ginger, Organic Fair Trade Caffeine-Free Herbal Blend $4 Tangerine Ginger has a complex array of sweet, spicy, tart and fruity flavors. Stimulating ginger root and adaptogenic, wild-harvested Schizandra berries are expertly balanced with the natural essential oils of citrus fruits, succulent tangerines and rare herbs. Tangerine Ginger is a full-bodied and invigorating blend with a wonderful gourmet flavor and aroma. Organic Rishi Blend
Dragon Well, Organic Green Tea $6 Dragon Well (Long Jing) is the most famous Chinese green tea, named after the Dragon’s Well landmark in the West lake area of the Zhejiang, where the tea originated. Dragon Well is a pan-fired green tea flat fried by hand in large woks one small batch at a time. This artisan processing technique yields a tea with leaves shaped like the blade of a sword. Each spring, during the prime Dragon Well harvest, we select a unique quality that has a balance of fresh green and smooth toasted flavors. Rishi’s Dragon Well is mellow and smooth with a fresh bittersweet finish and roasted chestnut aroma. Anhui, China
Tie QuanYin Oolong $6 Ti Quan Yin oolong tea from China is named after the Chinese Goddess of Mercy (the "Iron Goddess"). This meditative, deep rich Chinese oolong tea fills your palate with a delicate fruit flavor and a heady, floral aroma. Legendary for its dark leaves, Ti Quan Yin oolong tea is smooth and subtle. A complex flavor will develop over multiple infusions. Fujian, China
Pu-Erh $5 Why age tea at all? Most tea doesn't so much age as turn stale and dead. But with the right environment, and the right tea, you get something utterly unique: a drink that slinks down your throat and hugs your belly, relaxes your muscles and calms your mind. The best aged tea is medicine you want to gulp, full of bitter chocolate or stonefruit or wet, sweet soil. And for the complexity of what you're drinking, it can cost way, way less per serving than that bottle of old Scotch. Yunnan, China
Green Tea's natural fragrance is the oldest green tea and very popular among many people. It is baked immediately after picking. Green tea can be divided into many kinds, depending on the way that it is processed. The most famous among the various green teas are Longjing (Dragon Well) Tea around the West Lake in Hangzhou, Huangshan Maofeng Tea from Mt. Huangshan, Yinzhen (Silver Needle) Tea from Mt. Junshan and Yunwu (Cloud and Mist) Tea from Mt. Lushan.
Black Tea is different from green tea, black tea is a kind of fermented tea. After the fermentation, its color changes from green to black. The most famous black teas in China are "Qi Hong" (which originated in Anhui), "Dian Hong" (originated in Yunnan), and "Ying Hong" (originated in Guangdong).
Oolong Tea combines the freshness of green tea and the fragrance of black tea, has been becoming popular with more and more people. It is also popular for its medical benefits, including assisting the body building process and in dieting. Fujian, Guangdong and Taiwan are the major producers of this kind of tea. Oolong tea grows on cliffs. Harvesting this type of tea is very difficult, which makes it the most precious.
Scented Tea, popular in Northern China, is a mixture of green tea with flower petals of rose, jasmine, orchid and plum, which is combined through an elaborate process. Among this type of tea, jasmine is the most common.
Brick, Pu-Erh or compressed tea, is usually pressed into brick shape, and is mainly produced in Hunan, Hubei, Sichuan, Yunnan and Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. Brick tea is made from black or green tea and is pressed into blocks, which makes it easier to transport. This kind of tea is popular with the ethnic minority people in border regions. The most famous brick tea is "Pu'er Tea" made in Yunnan province.