155 Tasting Notes
Disclaimer: this tasting note is based on 2 samples in-store, and both of them were cold. Yes, that’s right. Today this was being served as an iced tea. WTAF?!
Second Disclaimer: I don’t like pumpkin. So keep that in mind.
Every year David’s introduces this tea I always write it off as soon as I see the name. I absolutely HATE pumpkin, so why would I like a pumpkin tea? Especially one where the rave reviews talk about how much this tastes like pumpkin?! NOT my idea of a good time. This year I decided to be adventurous and at least try it. I told myself if it was introduced in the fall collection again this year (they’d be crazy not to!), I would try it. I might even try a whole cup of it. But I would try it.
And so I tried it. And it was cold. Which was sooooo weeeeiiirrrrdddd. The tea guide emphasized over and over how much better it was hot, and I kept asking myself why the hell they would serve it iced. This makes no sense. I did get a bit of a pumpkin taste. A bit. It wasn’t enough to gross me out, which was probably good. It was spicy, but not traditional chai spices (no cardamom, I don’t think…and I really like cardamom). Mostly just cinnamon. A sweetness from the candy pieces. And almost…creaminess? I’m not sure. Something else. Can’t quite put my finger on it. It wasn’t terrible. I’m still going to reserve main judgement until I try a full cup of this. Next time…
Verdict: judgement reserved for next time, but based on this sample of the tea alone I wouldn’t buy it.
Oh, Snickerdoodle. I will admit: I judged you prematurely. And I do apologize profusely.
I smelled this in-store yesterday (you know the shot glass sniffy samples they put out of the dry leaf? Yeah. Those.), and was 100% grossed out. It smelled a bit like the bottom of a garbage can. And I don’t usually drink from the bottom of garbage cans. Instantly put-off, and completely wrote this tea off. I did really want to try Pumpkin Chai, so I came into the store today for that, and that alone. I was going to refuse this sample, but then…since when do I refuse anything that’s free?! LOL. Not happening.
3 sips…and yum. I don’t know if I could tolerate a big tin of this (I doubt I’d get through it), but I do like it. Cinnamon-y, sweet from the monkfruit, and a bit of je-ne-sais-quoi as an after-taste. I basically didn’t taste any rooibos at all, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Based on the 3-sip sample, I was convinced to try this as a latte (yep, that’s right. Go big or go home), and the tea guide also convinced me to have cinnamon in my milk (twist my arm and call me Wilma…I love me some cinnamon). Sweet LAWWWWWWDDD!! This is good. I STILL don’t know if I could finish a tin (I think this would get old pretty quick), but a 50g bag? Sign me up. I’ll be getting one next time I go in.
Verdict: surprisingly yummy, despite a disgusting smell. Will buy a 50g bag, but unlikely more than that.
Disclaimer: this tea note is based on two of the in-store samples. Yes, I got two. Cuz I asked and smiled pretty.
I thought it was unusual that one of their teas of the day was iced, since their iced tea promotion ended yesterday. Why could I not bring my cup today and get a $1 iced tea if you have pre-made iced tea?! Come on, now. Hook an addict up. Anyway, somewhat of a moot point.
The other reason why I thought it was weird to be iced was that the tea guides in the store yesterday said all of the teas were better hot than iced. So why do you right away give people a tea they’ve never had before in a form that’s not as good as another form? Seems weird. But, of course, I’m going to drink what you put in front of me. I’m a student. We’re good at this “free” thing.
ANYWAY. Still not quite on topic…
This tea was good. It was weird, but it was good. I would never in a million years think to combine cloves with cranberries. Apples, sure. Oranges, absolutely. CRANBERRIES? No. Maybe that’s my “I like my cranberry sauce with cranberries, sugar and water, thankyouverymuch” talking, but that’s a weird combination. And my mouth screamed “THIS IS A WEIRD COMBINATION!!!” as soon as the first sip hit. And then…it grew on me. And it grew on me. And it grew on me. It didn’t grow enough for me to buy a cup of it today, but I probably will sometime soon. I may or may not actually purchase any of the loose leaf, though. We’ll have to see.
Verdict: it was…weird. I don’t think I could stomach too much of this at once because it was so weird, but it wasn’t unpleasant weird. You can REALLY taste the cloves, so if you don’t like cloves you will not like this tea. At all.
Disclaimer: I only had this as a sample in-store. I did ask for two samples, cuz I’m awesome like that. So this review is based on two shot-glass sized samples. With that out of the way…
I was really excited for this tea. I was hoping it would be a slightly spicier version of Oh! Canada!, and one with caffeine (since as much as I like herbals, I need me a jolt in the morning or else no dice). I love maple sugar candy, I love anything with cinnamon in it, I love tea. Maple sugar tea should be a no-brainer.
But, alas, how I am so easily disappointed. There was absolutely nothing about this tea that made me want to even spend $3 on a full cup. There was NOT the overwhelming taste of maple (it’s CALLED MAPLE SUGAR, FFS), there wasn’t even an overwhelming taste of cinnamon. Sure, I got hints of both. But to me this was a basic black tea with some artificial flavour and some shiny things thrown in to look pretty in the loose leaf mix. To fool the brain into thinking there’s something “real” in it. You know what I mean.
Maple sugar tea, oh how you disappoint me so.
Verdict: will not buy. I might finally give this a chance to further disappoint me with a full cup of it when it’s their tea of the day again. What’s $3?!
Got the e-mail about the free sample offered when you buy something in-store, and decided that one can never have too much Rootbeer Float tea when it’s already 40% off. Plus…I love apple cider, and really wanted to love this tea.
I wanted to love it. Really, I did. I read the ingredients and thought…“artificial this, artificial that; is anything real in this tea except the apple pieces?!” so already not a good start.
The SMELL. Oh, boy. The smell. It smells absolutely wonderful. A bit artificial, but smells like apple cream. I would hardly call it apple CIDER. Not a hint of cinnamon or cloves in sight. But almost more like…apple butter? Like if I mixed some apple butter in with hot water and drank it. That’s the smell.
The taste: artificial. Not good. Yes, a bit apple-y and creamy, but on the whole not a pleasant experience. I found the aftertaste of the artificial flavour really unpleasant, and it almost made my cheeks hurt.
Verdict: won’t be buying this. Not true to the name of the tea (I wanted spicy apple tea), and too artificial for my liking.
I got this tea for my very first Frequent Steeper reward since it’s too cost-prohibitive for me to actually buy, but I love jasmine green tea. So there ya go. $19.50 worth of tea for free.
My thoughts: this is OK. I certainly wasn’t overwhelmed with orgasmic jasmine green tea goodness like I thought I would be. It’s certainly not BAD, better than the jasmine green I have in tea bags in a box on my desk, but I should sure hope that’s the case. It was fun watching this tea unfurl during steeping the first time, but I don’t quite think that justifies the price. I’d rather they just toss the dried leaves in the bag and charge $5 less for 50g for it.
The tea itself tastes OK. Not knock-your-socks-off, not terrible. Had a bit of bitterness to the first steep, but that’s my fault for over-steeping not the fault of the tea. The aroma of the steeped tea is just as flowery and yummy as the dried tea leaves; the flavour falls a bit short though. I actually liked the flavour of the second steeping much more than the first. Had more of the jasmine, flowery taste and less of the “green tea” taste. Exactly what I was expecting with the first steep (granted, I actually remembered to take the steeping basket out of my cup in the proper amount of time the second time…). I’ll have to pay closer attention next time for the first steep to see if I can get them tasting the same.
I guess I should come full-disclosure here and say that I’m still trying to find a jasmine green tea that comes anywhere close to as good as the one I bought when I was in Japan. I found this little tea vendor in a hole-in-the-wall shop right outside a temple, walked in and said “good tea”. The lady handed me a 50g bag of rolled-up green stuff, wrote out how much it cost, and I paid. It ended up being about $25/50g, but I figured I might only even stumble into this shop once in my life and so why the hell not. Glad I did…best tea I’ve ever had in my life. I marked down on a map where the shop was (constant stream of people in and out, so hopefully they’re still in business if I ever manage to make it back) should I ever get the opportunity to re-purchase. Still have the bag and everything, too. But since “good tea” managed to work last time, I might try that trick again…
Verdict: I would get this again as a free 50g tea with the Frequent Steeper program, but I wouldn’t ever pay the premium for it. Not as good as I expected, but certainly not bad. If paying this much for tea isn’t something you’re concerned about, I would recommend it.
I had this as an iced tea of the day on Monday. When I tried the sample in-store, it tasted like down-south brewed iced tea but with a twist. When I got it in my cup, it was like that…sort of.
It didn’t take long for the novelty of trying a new iced tea to wear off and me be reminded that I don’t like papaya. Why on earth would I get a whole cup of tea where the flavours are “green stuff” and “PAPAYA”!?!?!?! Because I’m an idiot, that’s why. I did end up finishing the cup, it’s not like it was disgusting or anything, but I definitely would not buy it. Again, not because it’s disgusting but because…it’s a purely papaya tea. And I don’t like papaya.
Verdict: will not buy, not putting in a yes or no for recommending because I’m not exactly an unbiased judge. Definitely not for me.
Sipdown: achieved! But I still have a whole tin of this at home, so can’t be removed from the cupboard. Oh, darn ;)
This is still one of my favourite teas of all time. I LOVE the chocolate flavour in it, without it actually being chocolate chips or chocolate shavings. None of that weird greasy film on the top that you get with chocolate. Good to double as lip gloss, though…so now I’m torn. lol. Also a fresh raspberry taste, a nice subtle almond undertone, and the WHA-BAM of mate. Om nom nom. Ug lug lug? Whatever. Point is, is that it’s good. Very good.
Verdict: will be refilling my tin with more Chocolate Rocket!
Steepster IS eating my reviews and cupboard stash!!!! I KNEW IT!!!! I know for a fact I’ve reviewed this before, I know for a fact it was in my cupboard. I know for a fact I rated it at 98. SO THERE, SANITY. You can remain firmly implanted in my brain.
I loved this tea when I first got it, and still love it. It’s a little tart, grassy, and bitter all at the same time on its own, exactly like guayusa should be. I like mixing it with an equally tart herbal tea for flavour, usually Pink Passionfruit (which I bought 250 g of online a while ago), which is one of my favourite mid-morning blends. Yum! Fruity, stimulating, and no caffeine crash a few hours later. Yum yum yum. So now that I have an empty tin of it, my drawer at work is feeling sad…no more guayusa. :( Simple solution: buy more!
Verdict: will buy more on my next trip into David’s, providing it’s still sold in-store.
I can’t believe there’s no rating from me for this tea. Is Steepster eating my ratings? I could have sworn I rated this tea not once, but twice already. And I have it in my cupboard in two different places (home and office). So…weird. Was positive I did. Am I going crazy? Have I already gone crazy so I don’t realize I’m already there?! IS THE SKY REALLY PURPLE?!?!?!
Sipdown: achieved for one of my stash of this tea. I ordered this first online during the discontinuing sale they had a loooong time ago. Loved it. Couldn’t believe it was being discontinued. Tasted EXACTLY like apple pie. So good. And then they brought it back! OMG, they brought it back!! So I went into the store and got a tin of it because OMG SO GOOD. And guess what? Recipe: changed. Now has a wicked-awesome plastic aftertaste, and a weird film on top of the water after steeping. Picture “pollution in the Niagara River near the falls foamy grossness” and that’s exactly what’s on the surface of my tea. Yuck. I dunno what’s different about this, since the ingredients are all the same, but bleh. Because it was part of a special collection it’s already been discontinued again, but I will not be re-buying. If it’s ever introduced again I’ll give it a try by getting a cup of it in-store, but my hopes will be rock-bottom. Wrecked it once, I’m sure it’s possible to wreck it again.
Verdict: refilling with one of the carnival collection teas. Cotton candy, maybe?