21 Tasting Notes

18

This tea looked and smelled beautiful in the jar! It’s also organic, so I just couldn’t resist getting a small bag. Unfortunately, the tea itself disappoints. I experimented brewing it a couple of times, but there is absolutely no rose in it—delicate or otherwise. I can taste the white tea. Of all the other ingredients, the peppermint is most obvious. It definitely leaves a minty aftertaste. If I want a mint tea, however, I’d get something else.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

53
drank French Breakfast by Octavia Tea
21 tasting notes

The tea ingredients interested me: black tea, vanilla, and rose petals. In the bag, the dry tea smells scrumptious, with a prominent bright, berry scent, not much vanilla or caramel, however. I brewed the tea exactly as suggested on the company’s website. The bright note remains in the brewed tea, but I don’t really sense vanilla or caramel. Personally, I’d like more vanilla. No roses for me. (Later, I added some vanilla-flavored coconut milk, and it is a nice combination, but I don’t want to have to add additional products or flavors.) I’d recommend it to people who like fairly strong and bright black teas and who don’t necessarily look for strong dessert flavors.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 45 sec
Yvonne

Mmm, sounds quite lovely!

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

85

I love all things chocolate. I was really browsing for some spices when I noticed Black Chocolate. The aroma of the raw tea in the jar is simply scrumptious—rich, dark, and seductive. The brewed tea retains some of the chocolate aroma and flavor, but it is not nearly as rich as the raw tea suggests. It is a very pleasant, nicely smooth black tea with a subtle chocolate flavor. If it were a perfume, I’d say that it contains a woody note; it might be strange, but that’s how it feels. Bottom line, it is certainly for those who prefer their tea only mildly flavored. (I also tried it with coconut milk, which adds a touch of creamy sweetness to it.)

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec
Yvonne

Mmmmmmmm….

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

39
drank Dark Rose Hearts by Octavia Tea
21 tasting notes

Catchy name, cute hearts, and the tea unfurls beautifully in the pot. I was considering it as a treat for Valentine’s Day. I got it because of the roses (of course), but even the raw tea doesn’t smell like roses at all. It has an earthy aroma. When brewed, this is a very nice, mild tea, with an extremely subtle sweet aftertaste, but no roses for me, not even a little. I suggest the company change the name to simply “Dark Hearts” because now it is misleading.

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

66
drank Rose Scented by Harney & Sons
21 tasting notes

I had high hopes for this tea. The dry tea has a wonderful scent. It does smell like rose oil, and if I am not mistaken, like the oil of rosa damascena, which is very specific—bright and highly valued in perfumery and aromatherapy. (In fact, I think that the most aromatic rose petals are actually from rose damascena or rose centifolia). So, my hopes soaring, I proceeded to steep the tea. I’ve actually tried this tea twice. The first time I used boiling water (202F) as suggested for black teas. The second time I preheated the pot, but used water slightly less hot than boiling.

The first brewing attempt produced a pot of strong black tea, but not much rose scent or taste. Just to be sure my senses are not completely obliterated from sniffing too many other things, roses included, I asked someone else to take a sip and sniff. His verdict was that this was a very nice black tea, but, alas, no roses. As the pot sat on the counter, forlorn, we decided to turn it into iced tea and finish it off. We were both surprised to find out that, in its iced version, we could feel the rose scent—subtle enough, but it was there.

The second time, I preheated the pot and used slightly less hot than boiling water. The rose scent is here—extremely subtle—but also somehow strangely sour, not in a citrusy way.

I see that most people like their flowers in a cup barely there. For them, I think it would be a good rose tea. I’d definitely prefer this tea iced or at least cool as for some reason it brings out the scent.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 15 sec

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

19
drank Rose Petal by Tea Chai Te
21 tasting notes

Another rose tea disappointment. The dry tea had a promising, fresh flowery scent—not too loud, but perceptible and pleasant. I steeped it for 2 minutes as suggested. Unfortunately, there wasn’t a trace of rose or anything else, for that matter, in the brewed tea. It would be nice as a basic black tea as it is fairly mild and not astringent, but that’s not what I was hoping for in a tea called Rose Petal. (The tea does contain petals and looks pretty.) Oh, well, moving on…

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

80

This tea was a very pleasant discovery. When dry, the bergamot is fairly pronounced. In the brewed tea, it becomes somewhat milder. The rose is only a tiny facet here, and the bergamot adds a bright note. The vanilla is subtle. It manages to be refreshing and soothing at the same time, and the flavors are well balanced.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 15 sec

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

53
drank French Breakfast by Octavia Tea
21 tasting notes

The tea ingredients interested me: black tea, vanilla, and rose petals. In the bag, the dry tea smells scrumptious, with a prominent bright, berry scent, not much vanilla or caramel, however. I brewed the tea exactly as suggested on the company’s website. The bright note remains in the brewed tea, but I don’t really sense vanilla or caramel. Personally, I’d like more vanilla. (Later, I added some vanilla-flavored coconut milk, and it is a nice combination, but I don’t want to have to add additional products or flavors.) I’d recommend it to people who like fairly strong and bright black teas and who don’t necessarily look for strong gourmand flavors.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 45 sec

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

51
drank Vanilla Rose Chai by Tea Chai Te
21 tasting notes

I am trying Vanilla Rose Chai today. The aroma is just heavenly in the bag! The tea looks beautiful, too, with its bright rose petals. The company suggests brewing it for 6 minutes. Because it is black tea, I prefer to brew it for 3-4 minutes, but I decided to experiment and brewed it twice: once for 3.5 minutes and once for 5. It didn’t affect much the aroma or the flavor of the steeped tea, but brewing it for 5 times made it stronger for me.

I’ve been looking for a good, prominent rose scent in a tea cup. While the scent of the vanilla and rose is quite prominent when the tea is dry, in the cup itself, the vanilla is very subtle. I could smell it, but tasting it was a different matter. The rose, unfortunately, didn’t make an appearance for me in the brewed tea. So, basically, I taste the black tea leaves, with some subtle vanilla. There is a slight citrus aftertaste.

I wanted to love this tea: it smells beautiful, and what could be better than vanilla and rose? It is also organic! However, I am looking for a bolder taste (not just smell) of the vanilla, and I certainly want to feel the rose not only when it’s dry. If someone is looking for an organic black tea with a subtle vanilla scent, this would be a good option. I’ll keep looking…

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec
Yvonne

Sounds scrumptious!

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

75
drank Chocolate Chai by Rishi Tea
21 tasting notes

Let me just preface this by stating that I love chocolate—the taste and aroma of it both. I liked the fact that this Rishi tea is organic, so I decided to give it a try. Once opened, the tea in the bag smells earthy, and, with some imagination, I can almost smell the chocolate. I followed the directions on the box. I brought the water and the tea combination to boil on the stove top as suggested, added milk (although I rarely drink tea with milk), and brewed for three minutes as instructed. The milk makes this rich, too rich. Unfortunately, I can’t say that the richness is due to the tea’s scent or flavor. The chocolate simply doesn’t come through for me in the cup. The same is true for the vanilla and the spices; they are not distinct. I was even surprised to see vanilla beans listed as an ingredient. I can feel mostly the yerba mate.

I tried it a second time. I started brewing it in the same slow way on the stovetop as suggested on the box, but I didn’t add the milk before it was fully steeped. This time, I only added a drop of vanilla-flavored coconut milk, and I have to say that I enjoyed the tea better this way. The flavors are still extremely soft, barely there, but the vanilla in the coconut milk added another dimension. Frankly, it was the vanilla in the milk that saves the tea for me. I wish I didn’t have to use additional flavors.

UPDATE: I have to say that this tea has grown on me. I would like the company to remove the word “chocolate” from the name because the lack of chocolate scent and flavor cause some serious disappointment. However, if one doesn’t expect the chocolate, it is a nice, smooth combination, which I find comforting.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Profile

Bio

I grew up drinking herbal tea, in many cases tea that I picked myself: chamomile, linden flowers, lemon balm, thyme, and hibiscus teas were an important part of my childhood experience. I learned to appreciate their delicate flavors. I am not new to black or green teas, but somehow, I had found them boring. My introduction to flavored teas—oolong, black or green—was a few years ago, and I’ve been hooked since then. Today, I still enjoy herbal teas. I’ve always been very sensitive to smells, so to me, the balance between flavor and aroma is very important. Tea is one of those small luxuries in life that allows us to combine our olfactory senses with taste.

I tend to like: herbal teas, “dessert” teas with vanilla, chocolate, or other flavors, and floral teas.

Moderator Tools

Mark as Spammer