76
drank Vanilla Comoro by Harney & Sons
47 tasting notes

So I drank this partially because it’s a sample and will be an easy sipdown for my mission, but mostly because I’ve read on a few people’s notes that Mr. Harney has passed away sadly. It’s not much, but a little token of respect. I’ve only just recently started exploring Harney & Sons teas more, and only own a few of their blends, but each one I’ve tried so far has been lovely. I really enjoyed this tea, too, which is truly a testament to how good Harney’s teas really are, as I have vanilla listed on my flavour dislikes. So rest in peace, Mr Harney, and thanks for sharing your teas with the world.

This came in my recent parcel from MissB, and I was curious to try it to see if I can in fact like vanilla flavoured tea (turns out I can!) Although it was a sample and I had only two cups worth, I wasn’t planning on drinking this any time soon. I have some older small samples I was planning on sipping down first. After I heard the sad news, though, I went rootling around my (far too messy) draw for some Harney’s blends and this was the first one I came across. I quite fancied a dessert tea and I couldn’t be bothered to look thorough for another one, as it took quite a while to find this in the first place. It was hanging out with my caffeinated samples, so I was surprised to read that it was decaf. As it turns out, this was perfect as I’d just finished a huge mug of coffee (Starbucks microground Colombian – genius) and didn’t really fancy the jitters. I will have to remember to switch it to my 6pm onwards draw, though.

As I’ve already said and mentioned in previous reviews, I came to the shock conclusion around four months ago that as a flavour in its own right, I am not vanilla’s biggest fan. Because of this, I wasn’t the most excited I could have been to try this tea. This lack of excitement continued right up until the moment I took my second sip. The packet smelled sweet and vanilla-ish, much as expected, and the tea brewed up smelling of Ceylon with a sweet hint. I added a level teaspoon of sugar (for the first time in a while) and a splash of skimmed milk, as I wanted a desserty treat, and the small sip I tried black was too astringent for my liking. After the additions, the whole cup brightened up, and was actually quite lovely. It wasn’t necessarily the strong, almost chemical vanilla flavour I am used to, but instead a more mellow and somewhat creamy and more rounded vanilla which reminded me both of birthday cake and sugared almonds. These two have a common element so I’d hazard a guess that what it most reminded me was of icing, although I swear there is some spongey cakiness in there somewhere, too. Despite how it sounds, it was not at all cloying or sickly – the black tea base actually shines and works as a part of the blend rather than just something for the other flavours to use. Does that make sense? I don’t know. It was delicious though, and whilst my views on vanilla still haven’t changed that much, and I still wouldn’t reach for it every day, it’s nice to know that I can still appreciate a really good vanilla blend.

I’m not quite a vanilla convert, but I will enjoy every last drop of my remaining sample. Thanks for the opportunity to try this, Bonny!

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 45 sec
Christina

I’ve found that vanilla isn’t a slam-dunk flavour for me, either. I like it in certain contexts, but not always. In particular, I’ve found that green tea and vanilla is a really unpleasant combination for me. Much better in black blends.

Nattie

Yeah, I recently tried 52teas marshmallow treat genmaicha, and the vanilla in that just didn’t work for me at all. It’s weird, because I love all other dessert flavours… Glad to know I’m not the only one!

Cwyn

Visited Harney’s site, rather sad to read of his passing…

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Comments

Christina

I’ve found that vanilla isn’t a slam-dunk flavour for me, either. I like it in certain contexts, but not always. In particular, I’ve found that green tea and vanilla is a really unpleasant combination for me. Much better in black blends.

Nattie

Yeah, I recently tried 52teas marshmallow treat genmaicha, and the vanilla in that just didn’t work for me at all. It’s weird, because I love all other dessert flavours… Glad to know I’m not the only one!

Cwyn

Visited Harney’s site, rather sad to read of his passing…

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Profile

Bio

Hi. I first got into loose leaf teas when a friend of mine showed me Cara’s Sherlock fandom blends on Adagio a couple of years back, but they weren’t on sale in the UK so I started trying other kinds instead and have been hooked for over a year.

I mainly drink black teas, and they make up the majority of my collection, but I am expanding my horizons and trying to include a variety of other teas, too. Flavoured blacks are my favourites, but I’m trying to include natural teas too. I will update my likes and dislikes as I discover more about my palate, but for now:

Tea-likes: a lot of different things, but my absolute favourites are caramel, chestnut, chilli, raspberry, coconut, and really fruity teas

Tea-dislikes: vanilla, ginger, coriander/cilantro and cardamom

I am a 19 year old student, studying English Literature and hoping to go into publishing one day! I stopped drinking alcohol only a few months after becoming old enough to drink it, and don’t miss it one bit. Other than drinking, hoarding and reviewing tea, my hobbies include reading, doing quizzes and puzzles, TV quiz shows (about the only things I watch regularly, unless Sherlock or Doctor Who is on), basketball (NBA, both the video game and actual sport – Chicago Bulls fan, and playing with my university girls’ team. I also watch my partner play, as he’s on the men’s team) and football/soccer (just watching – a lifelong supporter of Sunderland AFC).

I should probably also mention my tea-rating system, which seems to be much harsher than others I’ve seen on here. It’s not always concrete, but I’ll try to define it:

• 50 is the base-line which all teas start at. A normal, nothing-special industrial-type black teabag would be a 50.

• 0 – 49 is bad, and varying degrees of bad. This is probably the least concrete as I hardly ever find something I don’t like.

• I have never given below a 20, and will not unless that tea is SO bad that I have to wash my mouth out after one sip.

• This means most teas I don’t enjoy will be in the 30 – 50 range.

• 51+ are teas I enjoy. A good cup of tea will be in the 50 – 70 range.

• If I rate a tea at 70+, it means I really, really like it. Here’s where the system gets a little more concrete, and I can probably define this part, as it’s rare for a tea to get there.

• 71- 80: I really enjoyed this tea, enough to tell somebody about, and will probably hang onto it for a little longer than I perhaps should because I don’t want to lose it.

• 81 – 90: I will power through this tea before I even know it’s gone, and will re-order the next time the mood takes me.

• 91 – 100: This is one of the best teas I’ve ever tasted, and I will re-order while I still have a good few cups left, so that I never have to run out.

I am always happy to trade and share my teas with others, so feel free to look through my cupboard (which should be up to date) and message me if you’re interested in doing a swap!

I tend to ramble. Sorry.

Location

South Shields/Huddersfield, UK

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