115 Tasting Notes
This is what I was hoping Numi’s Berry Black would be and I am so happy that Ovation Tea chose to omit hibiscus flower. The floral “perfume” side of bergamot is missing, leaning toward the fruity lemon side, which is particularly enhanced by addition of orange peel. I’m not sure of the tea base; maybe Ceylon, maybe Keemun. The tartness of the raspberry hides the pure flavor of tea from my palate. I followed the instruction to brew for 5 min but I will go back to my usual 3 min next time. I do detect a dryness/astringency that might be diminished with a shorter brew. Today, I made two separate pots, one of 52teas EGC and this raspberry EG. Yay for finding another way to make EGC last longer.
Just a note to myself: this tea bag’s age is unknown but can be upwards of 2 years. So, that being said, bergamot is faint, can be mistaken for lemony fragrance. Tastes like a lemon Lipton’s, especially after the spoon of sugar added to my last half cup. Just used the worst type of mug to hold boiling hot tea. The kind of ceramic which makes it impossible to cradle your hands around which I love to do with my double-walled mugs and cups at home. It can be fun to visit your family but being away from all the tea stuff is hard. I am seriously considering getting this family a variable temp. kettle just to have a properly brewed cuppa. In retrospect, would use 205F for this TJ’s EG.
Edit: my rating is more for the latte I made. As just a bagged tea, my rating would probably be in the 70s. A decent not-too-strong Earl Grey, especially if you can pick it up on sale. (A good sale to me is .20/bag as long as the expiration is 6 months out).
Following advice here, used 2 bags brewed with 4, maybe 5 oz boiling water (that is, half way of my 10 oz mug) for 3 min. Filled my Breville Milk Cafe to froth minimum line of whole milk with half tsp agave syrup and a dash of vanilla extract (Costco brand). I ended up with more froth than I needed and may add more syrup another time. This is VERY lightly sweetened but suits my taste. The Breville makes more milk than I would need per single use but I like its function more than the Nespresso Aeroccino Plus. (I know I love my gadgets). I am lactose intolerant, or rather milk is intolerant of me since I quite like it. I am hesitant to try chai lattes and matcha lattes because I want to be sure I can make them perfectly given the price to pay drinking so much milk. I am definitely enjoying this attempt. Hey, just realized I can do this with loose leaf too!
Very pleasant but the chocolate and mint flavors are middling, meaning there are days when I want a strong menthol mint tea and days when I want a thick, unctuous chocolate mouth feel; then, the tea falls halfway to satisfying me. But, to have the benefit of natural, organic flavors, these tea experiences have to be reasonable in expectations. I need to not have unreasonable actual food flavor outcomes, and therefore I give this a reasonable rating because it does remind me of a minty hot chocolate.
Used a tea bag for convenience. Bagged tea is great for mornings when you can’t decide which loose leaf to dig out. I downed the cup without really making note of tea (Assam) or bergamot strength and quality (bergamot orange peel sits with tea to impart its oils gradually rather than using oil extracts). Doesn’t mean a bad cuppa – I would have made note if it wasn’t good – rather, this tells me this can be a convenient go-to tea, especially on-the-go when I can’t be precise with all my tea accoutrements.
Ha! Joke’s on me: added a tea bag of Bigelow’s Wild Blueberry Acai thinking to add antioxidants to my blueberry-scented tea and after steeping, I taste mostly hibiscus. So this really is a tasting note for a Bigelow tea. I actually remember buying this Bigelow herbal two years ago when my tea habit was mostly mint and chamomile, and definitely unflavored.
This was a one cup sample that did not have freeze-dried blueberries but the scent is definitely there. I had Lupicia’s blueberry black tea this morning and the two are different. At first my impression was Lupicia had more blueberry but that is because it is one note. However, I did hope Blueberry Zab would be more creamy (I don’t know how old this sample is, so that may be a factor). The Strawberry Zab was more dessert-like and to my liking but I am glad for the sample.
Blueberry-fragrant, mild tea (Ceylon, maybe). Can’t wait to experiment this with other dessert teas like my Earl Grey Cheesecake. Will report if this resteeps well but my experience tells me probably not. (From Lupicia Happy Bag 2013).
Second steep: less blueberry fragrance but still a hint. The tea is very flavorful but I did use less water (4.5 tsp tea/500 ml water).