There is no doubt in my mind that I am a tea girl. I love the ritual of brewing it, watching the leaves and herbs infuse and bloom in the water, sipping (or drinking, depending on my mood and the tea) from a lovely cup, the taste, the aroma. I love the culture surrounding tea.
I will never qualify for a total tea nut as I am not always careful to get my water to the exact best temperature for each tea and sometimes I can be a bit lax about steeping times. Any pot or cup I enjoy is good enough for me. I'm not picky, though I have a few I cups and teapots I actively avoid using. I am enough of a tea snob to know that while I will drink Lipton in a pinch (if I'm caught in a restaurant without the stash I carry in my purse or am a guest in someones home) it will never be my favorite and I will not buy it for myself. I sip the tea in Chinese restaurants with appreciation (usually - some serve pretty atrocious over brewed green teas) and am always thrilled when I end up somewhere that serves a simple oolong or well-brewed jasmine tea. I consider myself tea-adventurous and often take my herbal training in one had and my love of tea in the other to whip up a small batch of something for myself.
Last evening I hosted a tea tasting at my parents house for a friend who will be selling a selection of teas that I have blended at her booth at a local lavender festival. I will be making three blends for her: a black tea, a rooibos blend, and an herbal tisane. I had a wonderful time sharing these teas that I have dreamed up and learned a great deal in the meantime.