1776 Tasting Notes
There’s just something about the taste of this tea that reminds me of Buckley’s cough syrup – the one that has the slogan “It Tastes Aweful. And It Works” for good reason. Its ingredients include things like camphor and pine oil, and maybe it’s purely psycological but I swear I’m tasting those things in this tea. It’s not all bad, I’m geting a nice, fruity kiwi note in the aftertaste. But let’s be honest, the only time I want to taste Buckley’s is when I’ve got a bad bout of the flu.
So that’s the end of this tea. I know I said it was a fairly average chai, but I have noticed that it has a smokey quality to the leaves. So either they’ve been contaminated with soemthing else or the blender used a Russian Caravan or some other smokey tea for the base. I still don’t think that makes this tea rave worthy, though it tastes good enough with milk and honey stirred into it.
This tea has a really interesting scent being very herbal and sweet with hints of fruit and spices. I can totally tell there’s ginseng in there as there really isn’t anything else that smells like ginseng does.
The flavour of the tea seems to go in waves, first lightly fruity, then there are hints of cinnamon, then it finishes off with the rather herbal-tasting ginseng and the licorice root, the later leaving a sweet aftertaste in my mouth. There’s not really one ingredient that really comes to the fore – not even the ginseng – instead it all just sort of blends together. It makes for an interesting mix of flavours, but not an unlikeable one.
I was quite excited about this tea as Frank’s cheesecake blends tend to be a big hit with me. Unfortunately while I can smell the cheesecake flavours, they aren’t really present in the flavours. And it seems to have the same problem that the Pumpkin Pie black tea had in that you can’t really taste any of the actual pumpkin. Instead the flavour is mostly what I’d call pumpkin pie spices, like cinnamon and cloves.
I’ve got to say I’m rather disapointed. :(
Not bad, I was afraid the rooibos wold ruin it but I can barely taste it. The citrus flavour makes a great counterpoint to the cool mint and it doesn’t come of as being too herbal-tasting. There’s a nice low-level sweetness too, so I don’t think this tisane needs any sweetner. It would be a great tea to try iced methinks, too bad it’s not really the time of year for iced tea anymore where I live.
I got three good steepings out of this tea at 1 min, 2 min, and 3 min respectively. It was really neat how those little, tightly curled-up dry leaves unfurl into whole, good-sized leaves once they’re in the water.
It’s a malty tea but it also has a hint of bitterness to it, though not the sort of bitterness you’d get from cheap tea or oversteeping, it’s more an inherent characteristic of the tea.
This tea also goes quite excellently with a milk at a higher steeping time, I’ve discovered. The Nilgiri base instead of the usual Ceylon was a great choice for this tea – it supports the vanilla and gives the tea body without becoming too strong or astringent and drowning the flavours out.
This tea looks so neat with its little gold and black coils – I’m used to only seeing green teas rolled like that (the usual Bi Luo Chun) so this is an interesting change. The first steep was only for 1:30 minutes but still yielded plenty of flavour – if the strength of the tea was any indication I wouldn’t do the initial steeping for any longer. It has what I’d call a typical Yunnan flavour, a mix of malty and smokey flavours with a hint of bitterness. It’s got quite a punch to it, so subtle this tea most definitely is not.
The second steeping at 3:00 minutes was more mild but still very flavourful. I imagine I could get at least two more steepings out of these leaves if I had the time – unfortunately that experiment will have to wait for another day as I have to run off to work right now. :(