Thursday, 20 October 2011

Karakorum Cha Cha Cha

I went a bit overboard with my praise for Greg Mortenson and his incredibly popular book Three Cups of Tea last year.  It appears the incredibility of the book's popularity was more incredible than at first suspected.  There was a huge scandal about Mr Mortensen and his questionable handling of his charity in general and his books inflated sales in particular.

Before all of that, I was rather taken with the ideas he espoused in the book (still am actually) and paraphrased his main ideas here: Tea Alchemy.

Once people find out you're into tea, they start bringing you tea samples.  That's exactly what happened when a friend went to see Greg Mortensen in person.  The Karakorum Cha pictured above was on sale after his presentation, and it was purchased and brought to me.

Although I'm always grateful to receive tea that I don't know yet, I wasn't particularly impressed with this tea.  It took a long while before I figured out the way to brew it that brought out its best qualities, but I'll save all of that for the tea review I'll be writing over at the Tea Review Blog.

But the bigger questions are: Can we still support Greg Mortensen's ideas without supporting deceptive method of collecting charity?  Can we still like the tea regardless of the bizarre circumstances that it came to us?

My answer to both is: Why yes, of course.  I still like the idea of our relationship going from stranger to friendship to family while drinking several cups of tea.  It continues to be a naive but powerful idea.

And as much as I love high quality Darjeeling tea, it's a pleasure to get to know other tea from the Himalayan regions.

So, I'll talk more about how it tastes in my tea review, but you want to see the leaves, don't you?  Here they are:

Karakorum Cha Cha Cha


  1. You know, I hate to say it, but sometimes the most interesting people don't perform morality in an ideal way. If someone has a great idea, I say don't let their handling of charity money tarnish it. Unless their idea is directly related to how to handle charity money.

  2. Wow...I didn't know about this guy, he certainly has attracted a lot of controversy. Wikipedia seems to cover both sides of it on their article: Greg Mortenson, Criticism section.

    On another note, I really love teas from Himalayan regions other than Darjeeling...they're often very similar, and given how much I like Darjeeling, this is good for me. But I like them because many of them are also just a tad edgier, offering more kick or bite; some Darjeelings tend to be too smooth for me, depending on my mood.