Our love affair and admiration for Rooibos continues on this cold, freezing rainy DC Saturday with Hawaiian Zen. It was the first blend I ever initiated and it holds a spot close to my infused heart. Most people don’t know that it was originally called the “Obama Blend” because it was created for the 2008 Presidential Election. You can read a bit more about that in a past blog post here. Over time the blend morphed and there was no need to have it named for the President since he won a second term, so it was amended and renamed Hawaiian Zen for a 2 reasons.
The first being that the years I spent living in Hawaii were a cherished time for me that yielded life changing experiences and life long, beloved friends. The fun, relaxation and adventures during those 5 years spent on that tiny island made a lasting impression I keep with me to this day. Sometimes while stuck in epic DC traffic, I try to remember and visualize the smell of the air, the low floating fluffy clouds, the daily rainbows and the music which often contributed to a sense of peace and zen for me.
The second reason is that it seemed to make sense to change the name to the island that Obama called home.
In 2011, Washington DC held a very rare and special event: The Kalachakra with His Holiness The Dalai Lama. It lasted about a week and it was exactly what this city needed. I must have incurred some good karma chips because a friend offered to introduce me to the Ven. Geshe Tenzin Dhargye, who heads the Vienna Buddhist Institute in Austria so I could deliver a tea gift for HHDL: Hawaiian Zen. He assured me it would be presented and I believe it was. I still hold out hope that one day I’ll be able to fulfill a life-long dream of meeting HHDL and share a cup of tea with him. If Dharma allows. Here are further notes on our beloved Hawaiian Zen:
• Overview: A mouth watering kaleidoscope of color, aroma and flavor meant to initiate a sense of relaxation, peace and compassion.
• Dry Leaf: Red rooibos pointy needles, chunks of dried fruit, rose petals, ginger
• Liquor (liquid): Pale yellow-green
• Aroma: Intensely floral and fruity
• Flavor notes: Floral, sweet, herbaceous
• Brewing recommendation: 212˚F for 5+ minutes.
• Caffeine: No
-The Chief Leaf