10 Tasting Notes
Last weekend, I threw a Steeped Tea party! A representative from the company comes to your house and has a few different teas (picked by the hostess) to sample, and practically the whole loose leaf tea product line to smell. We had a great afternoon with my family and friends, sitting around the table, chatting, sipping tea and eating pastries. We also had a couple of food items made from Steeped Tea products – a caramel apple cheese ball and a fiesta rooibos dip. They were huge hits!
This particular tea I received as part of my order in the Christmas Collection, which contains 6 different holiday themed teas. Brewed as per instructions, steeping for 5 minutes in 98 degree water. Before brewing, the caramel was the main thing I was smelling in this package. But now that it’s steeping, the chocolate is really coming to the forefront. It’s shimmery across the top – fancy! One of the great things about rooibos tea is that it already has a bit of natural sweetness to it, so I was worried that this may end up being over the top, but it was not the case. Hints of the ingredients peek through and make this a thoroughly enjoyable drink. And because it’s a rooibos, that means no caffeine and it makes a great dessert tea! This is perfect for curbing those sweet-tooth cravings after dinner. I added some milk and it really brought this tea to another level. Made it a little richer tasting and really brings out the delicious flavours. Definitely something I would recommend to get for anyone who needs that something scrumptious late at night.
Tasted like I brewed a cup of grass clippings. Added 1 tsp of agave. No help. Had to throw away. Infused again from same group, same temp but only for 1 minute. Much better. Went back after drinking half a cup and added more water to it to diffuse even more. Now it resembles something I could drink on a regular basis. Reminds me of the tea we get at the pho restaurant. The sales person did tell me that it smelled different than the last batch of Japanese sencha they had in store, and that they had been out of it for a while. So perhaps because this was a super fresh crop was the reason for the strong grassy taste.
Dry, this tea has the most interesting smell. Not only the toasty smell, but something fruity and sweet to it as well. It is a green tea that has been roasted, so it’s not your typical green tea, which I like. When steeped, the leaves have a completely different smell. They smell burnt, and not very appetizing at all. But this has little bearing on the liquid itself, which smells a bit smoky. It has the astringency of a mild black tea, along with a very slight sweetness on the back end. There is a lot going on in this tea, and I’m enjoying it immensely.
Second steep: I gotta admit, I was skeptical about steeping for only 15 seconds. The only time I’ve ever steeped for that little amount of time was with Tetley Bold. But this infusion turned out stronger than the first! Less astringent, with more of a woody taste coming out.
Third steep: The leaves smell more like a black tea now. The tea tastes a bit more mellow, but there is still a lot to it. It’s been 5 hours since the first steep and I’m still loving this tea!
I’ve now spent the entire day enjoying this tea, which is absolutely amazing! I would definitely get this again, and recommend it to anyone.
The flowery smell is really overpowering. It’s making me nervous about tasting this. Alrighty, here we go…okay, not as bad as I thought. The initial taste is actually much more subtle than I was expecting. Leaves a distinct aftertaste of flowers, though. A tea to have on it’s own, as I can’t think of anything it would pair with. I think next time I brew this I would steep for only 2 or 3 minutes to try and avoid the overwhelming aftertaste.
It smells rich, like there’s a lot to it. I hope there’s a lot to it, because I need this kick this morning. When brewed, it has a strong scent. It reminds me of when my dad used to take us with him to the place where he made his own beer. Malt, maybe? Anyway, it’s a smooth tea, with a dry aftertaste. Seriously, my mouth feels really dry after drinking this. I feel like I’m getting that kick I needed, but don’t think I would purchase this expensive tea again.
Looking for something a bit sweet today, so I thought I’d give this a go. The smell of the maple hits you right away, and it smells delish! I don’t taste the maple as strong as I thought I was going to, though. Next time I’ll probably use 2 teaspoons to bring out that flavour. That being said, I like that the maple is not an overpowering and artificial taste. A perfect tea for me to have now, as I was craving something sweet, and this fills a void I probably would have filled with cookies instead!
Brewed as per instructions, steeping for 2 minutes. Smells nice, not really creamy, though, as other Earl Grey creams I’ve had. I was expecting something richer smelling. When I drink black teas, I’ve always added milk, so to have this without will be an adventure! Enjoyable, leaves slightly acidic aftertaste in the back of the throat. Would not brew this for more than 2 minutes to have on it’s own with out milk.
With Milk – Brewed as per instructions, steeping for 3 minutes. Richer flavour than a regular Earl Grey, but still not as creamy as I was hoping. Overall, a nice tea, but fails to meet my expectations for a Cream Earl Grey.
Looking into this a bit, I found that Teavana has changed the recipe recently, and the mix no longer has the blue cornflower petals in it. Many people on their website are showing their disappointment with it.
Brewed as per instructions, steeping for 4 minutes. You can really smell ginger, with a hint of…orange? Checked ingredients, yep, orange peel. One of my favourite teas. The blend of the oolong and pu’erh teas really makes a difference here, it’s not heavy at all. Steeped for one more minute, just out of curiosity. Even better. Such a great light tea, perfect for the afternoon.
I liked the blend of teas here. I’m not a huge fan of fruity teas, but the apricot worked well. Not super sweet, like some with fruit can tend to be.