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40 Tasting Notes

74

Sleepytime is so mild and soothing. The flavors of lemongrass and spearmint are noticeably present, but their sting is completely eradicated by the flowery chamomile. The tea is light-bodied and faintly sweet—but it could definitely take honey if that’s, your, you know, cup of tea.

I’d recommend this for its stated purpose of winding down, especially for those who find Tension Tamer too strong.

Preparation
5 min, 30 sec

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55

This tea looks and smells fresh and inviting. It’s pretty, actually…made of dried fruits with delicate edges, all light tan or peach or deep red. It reminds me of potpourri.

When I hold the tea in my mouth and swirl it around, I find a very nice flavor that’s very fruity and a little bit tart, like a berry compote. In fact, I think this would be a great complement to mixed-berry tea bread. However, I am yet again disappointed that the flavor is so subtle. If I just swallow the stuff without any ceremony, I get a little tingle of orange in my throat, but no complexity.

To be fair: 1) I’m addicted to black coffee, so maybe my threshold for “strong” is a little higher than most people’s; 2) this tea is evidently great when mixed with a green or black tea and served iced; and 3) my batch is more than a year old, and for a while I was storing it in the original packaging (i.e., a paper bag) rather than in an airtight container. I cannot speak to how this would influence the flavor. Does anyone know?

Preparation
6 min, 30 sec

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70

I’ve been saving this tea for some time, but I was rather stressed out today and decided to treat myself.

Of course, one the major selling points of a flowering tea is its appearance. This one took a long time to unfurl, but when it did it was lovely—even festive!—dull green, red, and white. I didn’t see the “arc” shape promised and pictured by Great Lakes, but it could’ve been that my narrow mug cramped the tea’s style.

In terms of taste, this tea was really comparable to Jasmine Dragon Pearl Green from Teavana (discussed in another recent review). Like Teavana’s jasmine green, Princess Amelie has a very delicate, innocuous flavor—so innocuous that even now, an hour after I put the bud in (without removing it), it’s only faintly bitter, and only upon swallowing. When I hold it in my mouth, it’s floral (…as one would hope!) and it smells sweetly aromatic, almost like perfume.

Flowering teas are relatively expensive, but they are marvelously cathartic. There is something very pure and metaphorical about watching the nondescript bud slowly and unhurriedly transform into something healthful and beautiful, a tangible reminder of mindfulness and patience.

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9
drank Bedtime by Yogi
40 tasting notes

I have a strong desire to like Yogi. In my mind they are a charming, honest little company run by Zen masters and herbalists, and they seem so sincere about their products. But then I try them and regret it deeply…

Unfortunately, Olivia and Auggy’s reviews are spot-on. It seems that Yogi tried to blend together every natural ingredient they could think of that promotes calmness and relaxation (just look at the description!) and then, discovering that the combination was nauseating, decided to try and mask the flavors with a surfeit of stevia. FAIL.

Contrary to Mary Poppins’ suggestion, you cannot in fact turn something distasteful into something delicious simply by drowning it with sweetener. Doubly so if your sweetener is stevia, which really does leave a weird, lingering taste in the mouth, sort of like aspartame on steroids. I was trying to place the uncomfortably familiar oral sensation I got from drinking “Bedtime” when I read Auggy’s review comparing it to vomiting and realized that she is absolutely right. (Though, I suppose if you’re used to stevia it may not faze you…in which case, disregard everything I wrote.)

As an added onus, “Bedtime” contains St. John’s Wort. For the uninformed (like me, until after I drank it!), this herb apparently interacts with many medications, including SSRIs, and can potentially cause some fun-sounding problems like “diaphoresis”, “mydriasis”, and “coma”. So do yourself a favor and check www.drugs.com before you even buy this tea.

…I’m relieved about the drug interactions, actually…it means I don’t have to feel guilty about not drinking any more of this!

*A quick note: It seems that “Yogi Tea” has recently rebranded itself as simply “Yogi” (probably because it manufactures cereal as well), so I’ve recategorized “Bedtime” appropriately. (You can see by comparison that they’ve redone their logo and box design, too!) There are still some older reviews of blends from “Yogi Teas”, but I’d suspect that newer reviewers will be commenting on teas from “Yogi”.

Preparation
8 min or more

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62

I’m going to preface this review with the caveat that I got this tea as a gift eight months ago, and only recently put it in a container. My lack of expertise prevents me from commenting on whether the age of the tea would strongly affect its flavor—I’m sure some of you would know.

This is my first Teavana tea and I was really excited to try it. I followed the directions (one teaspoon, steeped two minutes), but found the tea to be really weak. It was completely colorless and the flavor almost imperceptible. It was a whisper of a taste that left me wishing for something stronger.

After doubling the steep time, I found this tea to be quite good. The taste is still faint, but very smooth and completely inoffensive with no hint of bitterness (which is actually a bit strange for a green tea…?). As I understand it, though, Teavana is expensive; I’m not sure how the price compares to the jasmine green by Two Leaves and a Bud, but I found its flavor much more pronounced—and thus probably more responsive to resteeping.

Preparation
4 min, 0 sec

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91
drank Abundance by Herbal SereniTea
40 tasting notes

This is delicious when iced, naturally sweet and fruity (I think—what are the “artificial flavors?”), but with a grassy edge, like sencha. The additions of black tea and lavender make it taste almost buttery at first, or like a more sophisticated, darker fruit punch.

It did come out a bit strong, but I think I might’ve oversteeped it a bit, considering I used a double dose of tea-leaves.

Hooray! I wish more people had heard of this little company…

Preparation
3 min, 45 sec

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73
drank Keemun Hao Ya "B" by Tealuxe
40 tasting notes

Tealuxe has described this tea accurately. It’s tangy enough to feel warming, but it’s not too bold. It has a complex flavor—almost a fruity sweetness when drunk slowly, but a bit spicy if swallowed quickly.

ScottTeaMan

Didn’t you find it mildly smokey….every HY B I’ve tried is mildly smokey.

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75

This tea has such a wonderful aroma that my boyfriend wishes it were bottled as perfume so he could smell it all the time! The taste is actually very mild, even after being steeped for a long time—faintly sweet with an aftertaste of fruit and flowers, and very little of green tea’s characteristic sharpness. It tastes almost like an herbal tea rather than a green.

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57
drank Tastes of Summer by Twinings
40 tasting notes

Hmm…I steeped this tea for almost five minutes, but even then I didn’t really get a strong sweet taste. It tastes instead like a standard black tea with just enough sweetness to take the bitter edge off—not bad, but not as flavorful as I expected. I’m wondering if my tea bags are a little outdated?

Preparation
5 min, 0 sec

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81
drank Bedtime Story by Lipton
40 tasting notes

This tea has a nice buttery, syrupy quality to it, which gives it the comforting vibe that it purports to have. To me, the mint is fairly subtle—more of a gentle aftertaste—secondary to what I think is the flavor of chamomile. The flavor is definitely not in-your-face (contrast: Celestial Seasonings Tension Tamer—which, by the way, I love!)

Incidentally, I’ve yawned about twelve times while drinking the tea since beginning to write this review, so maybe it really does work…?

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Bio

Be it winter or summer, I love warm beverages of all kinds. There are few things more soothing than sinking into a soft chair with a good book and a big mug of tea or coffee. I’ve been manually logging my tea-drinking experiences for some time, so I’m very excited to find that there’s actually a website dedicated to it!

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Grosse Pointe Woods, MI

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