1589 Tasting Notes
I drank this one a couple of times over the weekend. Now that I’ve finished off my flavoured Butiki blends, I’ve pulled out the straights and started working on those. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. I defied the recommendation and added a splash of milk, simply because that’s how I prefer my tea first thing. It’s plenty strong enough to stand up to a dash of milk, anyway, so no harm done.
I found this one to be a pretty unique breakfast blend. I usually expect blends containing assam to be predominantly sweet and malty – it’s a characteristic that just seems to dominate. Not so here, which is really no bad thing – it’s refreshing to taste something a little different! Shiva’s Breakfast starts out a little sweet and chocolatey, but it has a strong citrus flavour in the mid-sip which is also a little bitter in the way of grapefruit or bergamot. The end of the sip reveals the flavour of what I can only describe as green wood – a little sappy and chlorophyll like, with slight floral hints.
I think this tea really makes the most of its component blends. They work together very well, with the strongest characteristic of each contributing something to the whole. No one tea or flavour dominates, so it’s actually a pretty complex taste experience – certainly different from an “ordinary” breakfast blend! I’ll probably save this one a little simply because it’s so unique – I’m not sure where I’ll find another tea like this one I’m finished with my bag.
A sample from Miss B! This one is my mid-morning cup, and it’s totally delicious. It’s almost worth being awake and at work just so that I can be drinking this one. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk, just because it’s that kind of morning. The brewed tea smells deliciously of cake – sweet, rich, vanilla. To taste, it’s definitely toffee with a touch of creamy, nutty nougat. It has that delicious caramelised, burnt sugar sweetness with a glorious fudgey undertone, and tastes like it should be sticky. It’s pretty sweet – almost a little too much – but it’s so spot-on flavour accurate that I don’t care for the moment. This one really is terrific!
Mint and Chamomile seems to be an unusual combination – I think I’ve only ever tried one other similar blend. Based on that experience, I’d say that this surprises me. It sounds a little odd to begin with, for sure, but they’re ingredients that do actually work well together.
Read my full review here: http://sororiteasisters.com/2015/11/13/mint-chamomile-rooibus-simple-loose-leaf/
I finished off the last of my “Anne” sample yesterday, which made me sad. It’s not a sipdown, though, because I’ve still got a pouch of the “Frank” version in my cupboard somewhere. I love this one for its nutty, creamy, sweet, marshmallowy wonderfulness. It’s a Squares bar in a cup!
A sample from Miss B! This was my first cup of the day at work, and I’m enjoying it immensely. Flavoured teas can be a bit hit and miss, but this one delivers what it promises – buttermilk and lemon. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk, just because. The scent of the brewed tea is very much buttermilk – it has that salty sour tang that’s so distinctive. This also translates into the taste, but it’s freshened up wonderfully by the bright, zesty lemon. It’s deliciously creamy but not too sweet or cloying – it walks the right line for a mid-morning cup, at least in my estimation. The overall effect, particularly with the added milk, is one of lemon pudding. Totally delicious!
A sample from Miss B! It’s pretty much properly winter now, so I’m finding that I’m drawn more and more to warming teas, and particularly chai, once I get to work on a morning. I like how they can vary so much from blend to blend – it’s like there’s always something new to discover, even though there are usually strong similarities too. I used 2 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 4 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk. I’d love to try this one as a latte, but it’s western style for now because it’s just not really feasible to faff about heating milk at work. Sad as that is.
Anyway, the tea. The initial flavour is very gingery, which I’m enjoying. Sometimes ginger in chai can get a little lost amongst the stronger flavours, but it’s here in all its glory. There’s also a touch of corriander, which is no surprise as there were so many corriander seeds in my scoop. If anything, I thought it might actually be stronger because of that, but it seems like a pretty mild chai as they go. That’s good in one respect, because it allows the orange and vanilla to come through pretty confidently, and they’re nice flavours to have in a chai. This makes for a smooth, creamy, sweet chai with the slight sharpness of orange zest, a good warming kick of ginger, and a swirl of more generic “spiciness” floating around in the background. I enjoyed this one.
This is one of my oldest 52 Teas, so I figured it was time to finally try it. Plus I was in the mood for a mint chocolate tea anyway, so it’s a win-win. The scent upon opening the pouch was pretty strongly alcoholic, and I’m guessing this one will need to air a bit before it’s at its best. I used 1 tsp for my cup, and gave it approximately 3.5 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk.
To taste, it’s pretty good. The base is a bit more pre-eminent than I’d have liked it to be. I’d forgotten what 52 Teas old black base used to taste like, but this was a clear reminder. It’s malty, but somehow also a little dusty tasting? Not the greatest, it has to be said. Then there’s the slightly alcoholic tang, which experience tells me will fade in time now the pouch is open. Underneath those flavours lurk the chocolate and peppermint. They’re pretty strong, which is good, and they come over better as the cup cools. The mint is cooling and refreshing, the chocolate sweet and creamy. It’s hard to go wrong with such a classic combination, really. I wish I could taste a bit less of the base, but that’s a relatively minor complaint because the flavourings still come over really well. Once the alcohol tang fades, this’ll be a pretty nice winter cup.
Sipdown! Finished this one off at work today. This was probably my least favourite of the Doctor Who fandom blends. It’s not that I don’t like it, but it didn’t wow me in the same way some of the others did. Mostly, it just seemed to lack a decent punch of flavour – I got a lot of base tea coming through, but not much of the orange I was really hoping to taste. Farewell, Donna!
A sample from Miss B! Another David’s blend I’ve heard good things about but not tried before – until now! I used 2 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 4 minutes in boiling water. It smells really good, first off. Like a pina colada, only hot. To taste, it’s also pretty amazing. The initial sip is intensely tropical – I can taste coconut and pineapple primarily, maybe a touch of mango. There’s a slight whisper of spicing at the end of the sip, but it’s not overpowering or even really all that present. If I’m honest, I’m not sure what star anise is doing in this blend at all, but it doesn’t impact too much on the flavour so I’ll put that aside.
What this tea reminds me of most is one of those freshly squeezed fruit juice blends, only with a touch of added cream. The creaminess kind of crept up on me – I didn’t really notice it at first, but it gets stronger and stronger with successive sips. Another thing that builds in intensity is an artificial-tasting sweetness at the back of my throat. I’m guessing this blend is maybe pre-sweetened with stevia? Either that or there’s some liquorice root kicking about. It’s that kind of sticky, overbearingly intense sweetness that becomes difficult to ignore after a while.
Having said that, I am enjoying this one. I like the fruitiness, and the creaminess adds that extra touch of deliciousness. It has a brilliant tropical fruit juice/pina colada vibe going on, and in that respect it’s very easy to like. The intense sweetness is perhaps to be expected, and to be fair it’s not completely spoiling my enjoyment. I’m just very aware that it’s there, and really speaking it’s a little more than I’d like. It’s unseasonably warm today, so I feel like this tea made a fitting afternoon companion. A little hint of summer in a cup.
Sipdown! I had a little over 1 tsp of leaf left, so I decided to use it all for one last cup, rather than split it into two much smaller quantities. It concerned me slightly to overleaf a green tea, but in practice it worked okay. The initial sip was pretty much 100% praline, but as it cools I can taste the creaminess of the eggnog creeping in. I think I’m tasting more of both flavours this time than I ever have before, so maybe the slight overleaf was no bad thing. I’ll miss this one.