98
drank Cotton Candy Black Tea by 52teas
4359 tasting notes

Last night, I received a request to try this tea. “I’m eager to know what you think of the new black tea base” said this request. So, I was happy to go a bit out of order and try this one. I confess that way behind in sampling my teas of the week from 52Teas … what can I say? I have so many teas to try and not enough palates or bladder space to drink them all at once.

After allowing it to cool a few moments, I took a sip, sort of casually, almost aimlessly, and my first reaction was “wow, this is a really good black tea.” Without even taking a moment to consider that this was a flavored tea, I started thinking of this as a magnificent black tea that is sweet, almost caramel-y, rich, and full-flavored. I started thinking of other “pure” black teas that are similar to this. Then I sort of shook my head when I realized that this is a flavored black tea, not some high quality, tippy, pure black.

This reaction, in my opinion, is the highest praise a tea lover can bestow upon a flavored tea, because more often than not, flavored teas are about the flavor and not so much about the tea underneath it all. Here, black tea and flavor have united seamlessly, with the flavor of cotton candy (and yes, I definitely DO taste cotton candy) highlighting the black tea in such a way as it essentially becomes a component of the tea and not an addition of flavor, if that makes sense.

And I think that this new base has everything to do with that. And let me examine this newly crafted, 52Teas’ base. It is bold and rich … much more well-rounded than 52Teas previous black tea base. The background flavor is SOLID and invigorating. It is robust and flavorful: sweet, malty and has a rich, bake-y kind of background to it, reminding me quite a bit of a Fujian black tea in many ways. And this is a very good thing, indeed.

When compared to the previous blend that 52Teas has used, this one is less astringent, and without bitterness. I do not need to come up with different parameters to brew it, I can brew this just the way I’d brew other black teas: 2 1/2 minutes in boiling water in my Breville. I don’t have to adjust the temperature or the brew time to assuage the black tea base the way I used to with other 52Teas.

Frank, you’ve crafted an excellent base here. I am very pleased, and so look forward to trying your future blends with this base (particularly my double chocolate decadence)! But for now, I this one deserves high marks!

52teas

So happy to hear it’s a hit. I think it’s really good iced too, though from what I’m hearing (haven’t tried it myself), it doesn’t do so well as a cold-brew. We steeped it like hot tea and then iced it and I was pretty ecstatic.

LiberTEAS

I typically hot-brew my iced teas too, unless I happen to have bagged teas then I cold brew them because it’s easier. I avoid mess when I can, and I find the mess is contained easier with the hot brew method using my breville. But, I don’t usually add ice to my iced tea, as I don’t want to water it down (and I don’t have the patience to make tea ice cubes), so I just refrigerate the hot-brewed tea until it’s nice and cold. This is definitely going to be one of the next ones I chill though. I bet it’s awesome iced, but how does it compare to the rainbow sherbet? You should reblend the rainbow sherbet using your new base!!!

52teas

I actually have some Rainbow Sherbet coming with a completely different iced tea base, in tea bags. I’ve been hard at it filling and sealing teabags lately. New iced tea series is coming soon.

LiberTEAS

Yay! I get to spend more money. (another sarcastic Yay!)

Dylan Oxford

Hey Frank, do you ever just sell your base tea?

52teas

Dylan, we can. I used to keep some of them on the site, but they weren’t very popular and I hate keeping stock in pouches of tea that don’t sell. But we could.

Dylan Oxford

That makes sense. I was curious/interested because you seem really proud of this one. Well, and it sounds like it would make a good straight iced tea.

52teas

Our RadioactiviTEA makes a GREAT iced tea too, particularly if you like them bold and rich. I can’t flavor it though, the tea overwhelms the flavoring.

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Comments

52teas

So happy to hear it’s a hit. I think it’s really good iced too, though from what I’m hearing (haven’t tried it myself), it doesn’t do so well as a cold-brew. We steeped it like hot tea and then iced it and I was pretty ecstatic.

LiberTEAS

I typically hot-brew my iced teas too, unless I happen to have bagged teas then I cold brew them because it’s easier. I avoid mess when I can, and I find the mess is contained easier with the hot brew method using my breville. But, I don’t usually add ice to my iced tea, as I don’t want to water it down (and I don’t have the patience to make tea ice cubes), so I just refrigerate the hot-brewed tea until it’s nice and cold. This is definitely going to be one of the next ones I chill though. I bet it’s awesome iced, but how does it compare to the rainbow sherbet? You should reblend the rainbow sherbet using your new base!!!

52teas

I actually have some Rainbow Sherbet coming with a completely different iced tea base, in tea bags. I’ve been hard at it filling and sealing teabags lately. New iced tea series is coming soon.

LiberTEAS

Yay! I get to spend more money. (another sarcastic Yay!)

Dylan Oxford

Hey Frank, do you ever just sell your base tea?

52teas

Dylan, we can. I used to keep some of them on the site, but they weren’t very popular and I hate keeping stock in pouches of tea that don’t sell. But we could.

Dylan Oxford

That makes sense. I was curious/interested because you seem really proud of this one. Well, and it sounds like it would make a good straight iced tea.

52teas

Our RadioactiviTEA makes a GREAT iced tea too, particularly if you like them bold and rich. I can’t flavor it though, the tea overwhelms the flavoring.

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Profile

Bio

I am obsessed with tea!

I am a co-founder of the SororiTEA Sisters:
http://sororiteasisters.com

I also review teas for the Tea Review Blog:
http://www.teareviewblog.com

In addition to my passion for tea, I am also a mixed media/altered arts artist. You can see some of my art here: http://eccentricpastiche.blogspot.com

I am also a self-proclaimed foodie. I review local restaurants and the food I buy online here: http://hungryinportland.wordpress.com

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My favorite teas are Yellow Teas with most Oolong teas at a close second. As far as “flavored” teas go, I love Earl Grey, Chocolate and Jasmine teas.

I also am intrigued by flavored teas with an unusual or unique flavor combination.

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I don’t do a whole lot of swaps anymore, however, I do occasionally sell sampler boxes here: http://liberteas.teatra.de/ I don’t always have sampler boxes available as it depends upon how much time I have as well as packaging supplies. I usually post at least one or two sampler boxes per month, though, so if you’re interested, keep an eye out or PM me and I’ll let you know when I have some posted.

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Most of the teas that I record in my notes here are going to have a fairly high rating from me. This is not because I am not discerning, but because I do not usually waste my time on drinking tea I do not care for, nor will I waste my time on writing about it.

Location

Vancouver, WA

Website

http://SororiTeaSisters.com

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