108 Tasting Notes
We took my son to the zoo last week during his Spring Break.. we only visited… didn’t stay, and they didn’t try to keep us either :) On the way home we stopped for dinner and there was a Whole Foods grocery nearby. I somehow managed to get my Hubby and son to take me there … Yeah! I was hoping to find some loose leaf blends, but didn’t find too much I was interested in. It certainly didn’t help that my belly was full.
When we got to the tea section we all took a look around to see if there was anything that peaked our interest. My son found this and exclaimed, “Look Mom, Sleepytime w/Vanilla!” I asked him if he’d like to try it and he immediately said yes.
We got this out this week and he is really enjoying it. He has stepped aside from his normal Sweat Dreams-Bigelow and will occasionally ask for Winter Nog-Della Terra, but since we purchased this it has become his new favorite.
The other night when I was done steeping a cup for him I decided to attempt a resteep of his for myself. It was weak but enjoyable so I went for another cup… fresh tea bag.
I really like this version of Sleepytime. It is the same blend I remember but it has a great vanilla creaminess that adds so much richness and smoothingness (like my new word?) that I feel like I grew up and found the big kid version of the tea I drank as a kid, not that it tastes of liquor, but that it’s like my old version matured and grew up. I can see why so many here have posted good reviews of it.. & I hope I can find it locally so I can keep it stocked for my son-and the occasion cup for myself :)
My local grocery store is finally carrying some loose leaf tea.. Yay!
Last month I noticed they were clearancing out a bunch of the Lipton pyramid blends. I was hoping that meant they were making space for something loose leaf… You might imagine my excitement when I found I they had a few Tiesta Tea blends when I went back a few weeks later looking to see what they had put in their place. The Tiesta blends are on the top shelf and you have to look for them to find them, but hey, at least we have something now.
I grabbed this one to try first. On my Birthday trip to Teavana I got a hot cup of their Caramel Almond Amaretti. For some reason, I imagined this one to be a similar blend. I was right.. It’s similar.
Tastes of creamy sweet almond nuttiness, with a bit of cinnamon. I also got a bit of tartness with this blend I wish wasn’t there, but disappears a bit as it cools. Makes a pretty pink cup, but quite the sediment slipped through my filter making it less pretty.
I think I like Teavanas version a bit more as it was more like the roasted candied nuts you smell in the mall, w/o the tart… but I’m also sure she overleafed and over sugared my cup making the blends not entirely comparable.
This is still an enjoyable cup, if I am patient enough to let it cool some, & I’m so happy to be able to grab it locally.
I’m not even going to rate this tea as I didn’t even get a chance to try it. I got a good deal to try the Amoda box and this was one of the blends we received. Hubby found this one and that was it… gone in a couple of days… Vamoosh… !!
I did manage one sip of his one evening.. the last cup, and only because I caught him. He rarely adds sugar and didn’t with this one. It smell of black tea and honey, tasted like a rich black tea and I didn’t get much honey but probably because I associate honey w/sweetness.
He said he likes the way this smells and tastes of honey. To me honey is exceptional sweetness… I get the flavor is there w/o the sweetness, but to get the honey flavor, I would find myself adding sugar I’m sure.
I’m glad he enjoyed this one.. but completely surprised he drank the whole thing w/o offering me a sip! He knows I like to try at least a tiny sample of most everything. Guess he didn’t want to share this one… :)
When I first started an interest in teas, I didn’t think I would care for citrus teas, but I’m learning that I can enjoy them :) Thanks EvaGrimm for sharing a bit of this with me!
I’ve found that I have trouble grabbing them to try because if I’m making tea to go with a meal, I don’t want the flavor to compete with my meal. I had this blend yesterday afternoon while I was helping my son with his homework and it was a nice treat… nothing to compete with it except my son’s attention.
This one smells sweet and orangey as dry leaf. Steeped I tried it w/o sugar and it was vanilla orange with a nice black base rounding out the cup. I decided to add a bit of sugar as is my normal and I lost a bit of the orange flavor. As it cooled, that orange flavor returned along with the sweetness.. Quite nice. It’s not in your face orange flavoring to me, but rather a nice gentle orange flavor. I didn’t really get the cream, but think it may have been present to help make for a smooth cup.
I could see myself drinking something like this in the morning when I’m often looking for a black tea and/or when I have something simple like a bagel or simple egg sandwich. Then, when I’m in the mood for an orange in the evening… L’Automne from Fauchon.. to get an amazing caffeine free cup… If only it were readily available here.
I do have a couple more caffeine free blends to try since EvaGrimm was so nice in sending me a few samples of citrus blends… Maybe one of those will tickle my fancy too.
I think I’m coming around to citrus, at least orange citrus so far if it isn’t too bold. As I write this, I remember how much I liked Three Friends from Butiki as well. Thanks to all the wonderful people here for their helpfulness and generosity!
Flavors: Orange Zest
Backlog from a couple of days ago.. been a busy week, but good.
I pulled this out of my sample stash thinking I wanted something green.. weird for me, but glad for it as I’ve been hoping to come around more to them.
This one I’ve had before… trying to stretch the sample MissB sent me because this one is smooth creamy vanilla goodness. It will likely go on my shopping list when I finally place an order from Butiki :) Again I got a nice creamy vanilla cup where the green tea base serves to compliment the flavors and there are no grassy vegetal notes for me… just smooth and lite. Bumping up my rating a bit because I just enjoyed it so much this time. Yum!
Flavors: Cream, Vanilla
I was hunting for something black this morning, as per usual, and wanted something different/new. Found this one in my sample stash from EvaGrimm.. you must have thought I’d enjoy this one since you sent two sample bags.. Thanks! I had held off tryig this one because I keep thinking Spring will be here any day, Holiday Tea just doesn’t fit.. I want warm weather, no more cold.. Yet we woke up to snow this morning. Hopefully the last of the season! I decided to look up the blend and see what was in it and was surprised to see it wasn’t a spicy blend but a chocolate raspberry mint.. Hmmm..
While hot I get mostly raspberry black tea. As it cools I find the raspberry still very present, but the mint and chocolate are finding their way into the mix. Quite nice. I imagine this would be great iced. My sister often orders raspberry iced tea at restaurants when they offer it, I imagine this would be much superior! I think I would simply tell her it was raspberry chocolate mint tea instead of “holiday tea”… Since “holiday” in the states refers to Christmas, now if it meant vacation.. That might fit. :)
As the weather is considering a change to the warmer, I’ve been trying my hand at iced teas. Mostly cold brewed, and Hubby is enjoying most of the experiments right now since the weather is still not quite iced tea season for me… although I have tried a few. MissB was so gracious to share an iced tea blend of this and several others for me to experiment with. :)
Being my first iced tea blend from Southern Boy Teas (52teas), I thought I do the unmentionable and cut the bag in half and do a partial batch… Just in case I had a fail. Wanted to be sure I had a chance at redemption.
I first hot steeped the half bag to make a qt of tea, pouring that directly into a Mason jar full of ice when the steep was over. I then removed the bag, and the leaves that had escaped, into another Mason jar and cold steeped that overnight. The hot steeped version was almost bitter and although it smelled of strawberry, it was richer in the black base flavor than anything. I saved the hot steeped tea until the next day and combined the two into a 2qt pitcher … Eeks, is that allowed?!?! I’m thinking next time I may try to cold steep first and then hot steep later as MissB suggested, but I was so excited I forgot to double check which to do first if I wanted to try a double steep.
We enjoyed the tea with our dinner and it was a nice refreshing tea. It smelled much like a strawberry milkshake, but tasted better… Richer. A touch of sugar brought out the strawberry and made this a nice treat. My 8 yr old son tried it and said it was good, but not a favorite… I’m thinking when we try Monkey Fart he will go bananas over that one.. ;)
I’m not used to flavored iced teas in the summer… having grown up on Lipton w/loads of fresh mint, Gonna take a little getting used to added flavors in cold blends, but I think I’m going to really enjoy the variety. Hubby is really enjoying trying new things already and always comes home saying how much he liked whatever I had ready for him that day to take to work.. I’ve sent several and he’s only come home with one that was just ok. :) So much better than grabbing a soda… In so many ways! Love it!
Flavors: Berries, Cream
I got this as a sample and had been waiting for the perfect time to try this. So many here seem to love flavored matcha that I wanted to be sure I had time to enjoy this one and really see what it was about the first time I tried it.
Hubby was home yesterday morning, and I decided that I had the time to play with it and see how it went. I’m into smoothies, especially for morning breakfasts in the summertime. We’re certainly not nearing anything like summer yet, but hey, at least most of the snow is gone now. I decided to try this as a smoothie of sorts.. matcha, milk, a couple of ice cubes, a couple of strawberries, and a touch of sugar. I threw it all in the magic bullet and waited for the strawberries to get all chopped up.
First impression… cold frothy milk weirdness. Hubby had the same reaction. I added a bit more sugar, and although the flavor was good, we weren’t sure about the texture. I like frothed hot milk for hot coffees and such, but cold, it just wasn’t my thing. I think next time I will try blending it all with a bit of water, and then adding some milk/cream at the end so as not to have the frothing effect & maybe we’ll enjoy it more next time. I’ve had the same problem when I’ve tried to make blended chai’s w/milk before, so I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised.
I will say once I got past the frothiness texture of it and added a little sugar, the flavor was good. I think I was glad I added the few strawberries for an added dimension to the flavor as well. I think I’ll hold off rating this until I give it another go.
I haven’t reviewed much lately, been really busy and drinking down some favorites… not had much time to sit with a new tea this week, until tonight.
I got this as a part of a sample pack on a trip to Indy a few weeks ago… found this at a Homegoods store. It’s bad when there are so few tea purchase opportunities in the area that you make a special trip into a housewares store in the hopes of finding some tea. I grabbed the sampler tin of chais, and a raspberry mint that I haven’t yet tried.
I wasn’t sure which of the chais to try tonight. I thought I grabbed a caffeine free one, but oops.. Now upon a second look, it’s a black tea. Dry it smells sweet, nutty, and spicy. Steeped as a latte, I get sweet caramel chai goodness. I’m not really noticing the nut except maybe in the depth/richness of the cup, but some of that may be the black tea that I hadn’t realized I had chosen when picking this tea.
I actually think I liked this one better than their coconut version I tried awhile back that I thought I would love. Wonder how a second steep would do since I finished this cup so fast? I think I might have to try.. but after that, gotta turn to something w/o caffeine :)
Thinking that it would be nice to stumble on a full size tin of this sometime.. I might just snag it up. We’ll see if I feel the same way after I finish the other 3 tea bags.
Flavors: Caramel, Cinnamon, Vanilla