30 Tasting Notes
Teavana now sells this tea. I had to buy two more ounces after I saw they put it back on the website months after they removed it (also, free shipping!).
The dry leaf looks pretty: the rooibos is browned because of the chocolate, of which there are tiny pieces, and there are rather large pieces of banana walnut. The aroma smells strongly of banana and chocolate. Even though I can tell that some flavoring was added, I love it! This is one tea I love smelling from the tin every time I brew a cup. The liquor is dark red. The flavor is medium-bodied. I can’t taste the rooibos (or the nuts, come to think of it); the chocolate and banana notes overshadow the base, but this is OK by me. In general, I love the combination of banana and chocolate. This is a delicious chocolate-banana tea. Perfect for dessert.
Many thank to Teajo Teas for sending me a generous sample! Because this is my first pure Indian tea, my tasting skills are unrefined in regards to this type of tea. This was a novel, yet difficult experience.
The dry leaves’ aroma is strong and sweet, slightly fruity. The liquor is a dark reddish brown. The flavor – full-bodied and bold – brought me back to the English blended black teas (naturally) that I often drink for breakfast. Alone, it slightly tasted bitter. I’m sure that this flavor evokes more than just this, but, again, I’m going over my head with this one. After a few sips I cautiously added half a teaspoon of sugar and a couple small splashes of milk. The flavor was now similar to the aroma, having a gentle fruitiness. BACKLOGGED It wasn’t grapes that the tea evoked; rather, it was apricots. Yum!
This is a nicely tasting tea. Perfect for mid-morning, like now!
When I first opened the bag and smelled the tea, Wow! Strong chocolate and mint. This is another tea I love for the aroma, it’s so delicious. Also appealing is the dry tea: the chocolate chips, forest green mint leaves, and the little candy shamrocks. To be honest, I bought this tea because of the picture. I took a good gamble in the end! The aroma of the steeped tea is similar to that of the leaves. The liquor – dark reddish brown – oh my gosh it’s so good. The mint and vanilla wonderfully complements the chocolate, which is not (of course) artificial tasting. This chocolate-mint tea is yummy!
Thanks to Stephanie for sending me a sample!
The leaves (dry and wet) smelled of banana and a bit of chocolate – like banana dipped in melted chocolate. Surprisingly, the flavor of the liquor was bitter, and the banana was weaker than I anticipated. Even when I brewed another first infusion with a lower steeping time (about a minute less) the tea was still bitter. The second infusion tasted better: I let the leaves steep for a bit longer than the recommended alloted time for the first infusion (for compensation), and the flavor was less bitter and the banana and chocolate stood out more. Even then it was only alright at best.
I had high expectations because I love banana/chocolate teas, but this one isn’t for me unfortunately.
Everything about this tea is great! I’ll start with the appearance of the leaves. They are most beautiful when dry – the pink of little sakura blossoms accentuates the dark sencha. The aroma of the dry leaf consists of cherry blossoms with a hint of sencha, which stands out more when the leaves are wet. The liquor is a clear, bright green. Concerning flavor, the bitterness of the sencha hits the taste buds, but after sitting in the mouth for a couple seconds, the tea begins to taste of sakura and a full-bodied balance between the two ingredients is well-established. After swallowing, the sakura lingers for a while.
This is one of those teas I could drink all day long and not grow tired of, and, like other good senchas, it makes me happy.
I tried to find instructions on how to brew this tea on Della Terra’s website, and I think they discontinued it since it wasn’t there anymore. Probably the best idea…
Now, the dry leaves look very pretty: black tea leaves, chocolate bit, red sprinkles, shiny pink sprinkles, and silver orbs. With the way the aroma smelled and the flavor tasted, the tea – well – resembles lapsang souchong. I expected it to smell and taste like their other chocolate teas, but it instead smells and tastes like smoked black tea. Bizarre. Totally bizarre. Either that or my taste buds are out of whack.
ETA: Been procrastinating on editing this note. A while back I was browsing Della Terra’s website and noticed they were selling this tea until they officially ran out. In the ingredients list, they listed not black tea – like they did on the label – but lapsang souchong. (smacks forehead) Doggone it, I tasted smokiness when I first tried the tea and couldn’t…just couldn’t! >_< I wasn’t able check the website when I bought the tea to make sure what base was used. My credibility as a tea taster just went back down to level zero.
Anyway, now that I know why it tastes smokey, I’m more forgiving. Professor Grey needs to be steeped for 60 seconds, 90 seconds at the most – otherwise the lapsang overpowers the chocolate. Still can’t taste the bergamot. It’s decent.
I received a sample of this tea from their catalog. Yay samples!
When I sniffed the tea bag, I only smelled the vanilla. (This could very well be due to my so-so culinary smelling abilities, but eh.) The aroma of the liquor, which had the clear, orange red tint of rooibos, smelled of the pomegranate. When I drank the tea hot, the flavor was tart – maybe partly due to the inclusion of hibiscus. I’ve had more tart teas (see RoT’s hibiscus tea, which I only drink iced), so this wasn’t so bad. The vanilla, meanwhile, appeared during the aftertaste. When the tea cooled to warm, verging lukewarm, it tasted a lot better. The pomegranate was not as tart and the vanilla had more of a presence. I think I would prefer this tea iced. All in all, pretty good.
Well, this the third and last sample I requested from Nina’s Paris. I saved it for last because I liked the idea of an orange chocolate tea, which I’ve never drunk before. But because no set instructions were given (for any of their teas, for that matter), I think brewed this tea incorrectly, unfortunately.
Anyway, the dry leaves – which look pretty due to the presence of several pieces of orange rind – smelled of yummy orange cream. Wet, they smelled of the base tea, which is a strong black tea. I knew then the flavor would be strong as well. The aroma of the tea itself smelled like that of the orange chocolate in the shape of orange (the one that you bang on the table and the slices come apart – man, I miss those!).
The liquor is clear and reddish brown. As for the flavor, the base tea is very strong – too strong. It overpowers the orange and chocolate, which don’t appear until the aftertaste. And even then they are kind of weak. I guess this tea isn’t for me.
But much thanks to Nina’s Paris for their willing to send out samples!
The leaves are dark brown and uniformly cut, and contain pieces of apple and rose. While I waited for the tea to cool down, I took delight in the aroma – apple and cinnamon, with hint of vanilla – which smelled like apple pie with a generous amount of cinnamon. Since the liquor is dark, yet clear, I expected the base tea (black) to quite strong. Instead, I tasted a wonderful balance between the base and the other ingredients. Again, apple pie, but with a slight presence of brisk black tea. The flavor is medium-bodied and smooth.
This tea is delicious! I’m very glad I chose it as one of my samples. Recommended to be drunk with dessert (for the apple cinnamon) or with breakfast (for the base).
My first Nina’s Paris tea! When I opened the packet and took a whiff the dry leaves (broken with several bits of strawberry), I smelled a strong aroma of strawberry-flavored hard candy, with a hint of vanilla. The liquor of the tea is clear and dark brown. I was surprised by the strength of the flavor when I took my first sip. It is bold. I was expecting a black tea from India, but perhaps it came from Africa (DISCLAIMER: I have little experience in tasting teas from either country (that is, unflavored teas), but I have tried some black tea from Kenya, and this tea tasted very much like it). The tea somewhat overpowers the strawberry, but the strawberry’s presence is stronger during the aftertaste. It is a bit creamy, most likely due to the presence of the vanilla. Thankfully, it’s the strawberry that makes this tea bearable, since I’m not too partial to bitter black teas.
Since this tea is very strong, I would drink it in the morning or the late afternoon after coming home from a long day.