392 Tasting Notes
I wasn’t expecting to receive another box from The Cozy Mug, but I am really glad I did. It had Charleston Tea Plantation teas in it!
Today on the blog, a review of the Timely Tea subscription box!
She felt the rumblings of the monster’s steps before she heard them. Knowing that time was growing short, she began the preparations. “Five minutes is a long steep,” she thought, “But I’m sure the Brew Masters know best.” She boiled the water and poured it over the leaves, watching as the liquid quickly swirled with darkness. She experienced a tiny shiver of excitement…or was it fear?
Read the whole story: https://tealover.net/2015/07/andrews-dunham-black-sunshine/
Earl Grey (black tea plus bergamot), add cocoa shells (swoon), add raspberries. If you have never tried a blend with cocoa shells, you really must. They add such an amazing cocoa flavor – so much better than just a cocoa powder. I was excited when I saw that the blend had them. Chocolate + orange + raspberry? Yes please!
I brewed the tea for 2.5 minutes as suggested on the package. The scent from the brew was heavenly – chocolately but not overwhelmingly so, and I could smell the bergamot but it didn’t smack me in the face like many bergamot blends can.
The color of the tea was like a garnet and had a red/orange glow.
The flavor was interesting – different than anything I had ever had, and it really appealed to me. It tasted very full and round and not drying at all. The blend is extremely well balanced and no one flavor stands out. I kept taking drinks trying to figure out what I tasted at the front of the sip, and the answer is the whole blend. The lingering flavor in my mouth is from the bergamot, but the bergamot isn’t heavy-handed in this tea. I think if you are on the fence about it you should still give this a try.
Full review and photos: https://tealover.net/2015/07/tee-co-earl-grey-choco-berries/
When I took the first sip my initial thought was that the white tea is the star of the blend. That’s a great sign – this isn’t an inferior base with flavoring added to hide its quality. This is a light and flavorful white peony tea that shines through. The schizandra berries and slight touch of citrus enhance the tea rather than covering it up. The order of the sip for me goes: white tea flavor at the front, round berry flavor in the middle, and slight citrus on the finish. Interestingly, the berry comes back again in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is very light and refreshing.
Read more at: https://tealover.net/2015/07/da-cha-teas-organic-white-schizandra/
I opened the package and took a deep breath. The leaf smelled roasty and hearty, like it was fresh and still full of flavor. The leaves were long and unbroken. I always like it when you can actually see two leaves and a bud still together.
I brewed the tea in a little clay gaiwan that I only use for oolongs, but it doesn’t photograph well and it’s impossible to see the color of the tea in it, so I transferred the tea to this neat little antique set that I found online. The mountain on the picture makes me think of Taiwan.
I was all set to go six steeps since that’s the number on the package but after five both the tea and I were done. I love the first steep of an oolong, and this one was no disappointment. The tea had a light mouth feel – not coating at all. The flavor was pure nectar: sweet and lightly floral/fruity. Really lovely. The aftertaste was long lasting and sweet. Even the color was like honey.
Full review and photos: https://tealover.net/2015/07/sanne-tea-oriental-beauty/
The name of it, Sicilian Vanilla, immediately begged the question to me of what makes it Sicilian. The ingredient list provided a clue: a blend of black teas, helichrysum flowers, vanilla bean, vanilla extract, fiori di Sicilia essential oil blend – aha! What is this?
How cool is this – it’s both a tea and a learning experience! I looked it up and found that fiori di Sicilia is a flavoring that contains vanilla, citrus and floral flavors. It is used most often in panettone. What an interesting thing to add to a vanilla tea! Dry, I couldn’t smell much other than the base. It was a good sign though, since many times flavored teas have flavoring added to cover up an inadequate base. I could smell the black tea and it smelled great, so I was encouraged.
Keep reading: https://tealover.net/2015/07/mks-tea-sicilian-vanilla/
The leaf smells very green and strongly of authentic vanilla. It’s the smell I get when I cook with vanilla beans.
I steeped it as directed, 4 minutes at boiling. As soon as the water hit the sachet the air was infused with the vanilla smell. I steeped it sitting right in front of me so I could enjoy the fragrance for the full steeping time.
The tea was still really hot after four minutes, so I let it sit for a few minutes while I played Operation with the sachet. The leaves had totally filled it during the steep and I could almost hear them yelling, “Let me out!” So I did.
Photos and full review: https://tealover.net/2015/07/steven-smith-teamaker-oolong-ice-cream/
The smell of the leaf was definitely peachy. As I was smelling the dry leaf I kept thinking – and I mean this as a compliment – that it reminded me of the smell of peach Jolly Ranchers. I don’t mean that the tea smelled like anything fake or candy-like, because I think peach Jolly Ranchers smell delicious. Both they and this tea were smack you in the face peachy, and that’s a great thing. It’s the kind of scent that makes me want to sit there and smell the leaf for a while, but I made myself make the tea. First world problems!
Full review and photos: https://tealover.net/2015/07/beleave-teas-peppy-peach/
I had been warned that I would be blown away when I opened the bag, so I purposefully did not unseal it until I was ready to brew it. Delicious aroma – mostly brown sugar, a little maple. I think I could have been happy just smelling it all day but I know you want to know about the flavor too.
The color of the leaf was dark, almost like a black tea so I knew that it would be very oxidized (my favorite). I love seeing safflowers in leaf; they add such a pretty touch. I honestly don’t know what they do flavor wise but remember, we eat with our eyes first and my eyes were really feasting on this. I picked the cup and saucer for the shoot based on the safflower color.
The color of the brewed tea was remarkable. It was a golden orange color that reminded me of sunsets over the ocean.
Full review and photos: https://tealover.net/2015/07/tea-leaf-co-brown-sugar/