Like cardigans on breezy winter evenings and light cottons on a hot summer day, a cup of freshly made chai – sweet, creamy and laden with all sorts of spices- is all you need to see yourself through the balmy days during the monsoons.
And if there’s one reason to even look forward to a long and solemn season of monsoon, at least in India, it is for the humble luxury of indulging every waking hour in ample cups of steaming hot chai, sipped throughout the day, and then some in the night. Add to your monsoon ceremony tables a mile high stack of deep-fried pakoras (or deep fried anything, really), and you have yourself the most perfect and the most satisfying monsoon meal imaginable to humankind.
Yes. For us, monsoons are all about the simple, cozy pleasures and treats. And at our end, you can spot the rejoicing commence the moment the first raindrops happen. Just as the season turns and the clouds begin to break into rain, the celebrations kick in. It comprises of very little other than a steaming hot cup of masala chai and some [deep fried] snacks, and the ritual entails enjoying these items sitting quietly on the building verandah, listening away to the pitter-patter of the raindrops as they begin to fall; sometimes loud, sometimes soft. This moment is made better only by the company of the people you share the chai with.
This is how we’ve always welcomed monsoons and this is how, possibly, everyone welcomes monsoon in India – with chai and joy!
Admittedly, there’s no telling account of how the marriage between monsoons and chai happened, but it’s not hard to imagine why the two, put together, work so well.
We feel it has a lot to do with how chai and rains, together, work the senses. The first splatters of raindrops on dusty, thirsty soil kickoff a sensory soiree like no other – there’s the lusty smell of the wet earth after first rains, the turning of the dusty browns into lush greens and the general calming of the vibes and the mood.
Now, imagine finding yourself on a day like this with your hands cupping a steaming cup brimming with freshly prepared chai. Made by simmering dark, strong flavored tea nuggets in sweetened milk – made better (and more delicious) by the addition of spices and herbs- chai is this dreamy concoction that’s at once creamy and fragrant and dark and tannic.
What does it have to offer? Well, as is, the brew is immensely nourishing. And when you infuse it with spices and botanicals of all sorts and form, you turn it into this elixir of sorts that’s quite therapeutic, to the point where your senses feel emboldened, and spirits enlivened. Masala chai is at once rich and appetizing and elegant and unnerving – easy to have a mug or two and still be productive.
So, this season, if you find yourself perched on a rain-soaked window sill, eagerly wanting a cup of chai, treat yourself to a cup made from the TGL chai tea collection. Our masala chai blends are made from good tea and all-natural botanicals, and produce a cup that’s meant for monsoons.
Our pick for this season? The TGL Bombay Cutting Chai. An absolute classic, inspired by the Mumbai way of chai – brisk and spilling with goodness of ginger and cardamom.