This tea has spearmint instead of peppermint, which was why I bought it. Testing it tonight for the first time, my opinion is that this is only “ok”. Only “ok” isn’t good enough, so I’m going to play around with steep times etc., as there seems to be a wide variable for this one. I’m also going to try iced, as JoonS. makes such a compelling case for it : )
136 Tasting Notes
I’m comparing two of Upton’s vanilla flavored black teas tonight. The first was Vanilla Tea (TF91), and I liked that one very much. The tea was balanced, not bitter.
This one tastes very similar to Vanilla (black) Tea, but lacks the creaminess that Vanilla Tea had (strange, given that it has “Creme” in it’s name). But without comparing, this one is very good as well. It does have a little feeling of the “orange creamsicle” that others have mentioned, from the bergamot plus vanilla. I plan on getting a tin of one of these two, so will need to ponder and retry both later. Recommend to vanilla lovers.
Having 2 Upton vanilla teas to sample tonight, this choice was random (other being Earl Gray Vanilla). Turned cold and rainy here today, so in spite of a large Teavana (sale) order arriving today, this is what I wanted.
The words “black tea” always worry me. Will it be bitter?…too strong? Well in this one, the black tea is very well behaved, very nice. Obviously the vanilla is the star here, but they are very good partners, and am enjoying this cup of tea very much.
I may have to realize that I’m not much of a “base tea” kind of person… at least not yet. I’ve been testing a lot of plain teas, and haven’t found anything in the “love” category yet. Perhaps I just haven’t hit the right one yet …
With that said, I know I’m a flavored tea person by now, and this tea hits the spot tonight. I much prefer spearmint to peppermint, but this is very very good to me right now. It has a natural sweetness somehow and a creamy feeling to it. Hmmm, I think I finally found an Adagio tea to love.
This came in their green tea sampler that I purchased, along with my IngenuiTea (which I love btw). All bad reviews aside, this is an “ok” green tea, IF you are looking for something light. But the bitterness is not a good thing, so this will not get a “yummy” from me either.
This tea was included in Adagio’s green tea sampler. This is a very light tasting green tea, and on the vegetal side (think celery). It has a little bitter thing going on in the aftertaste, so this probably isn’t a green tea that I’d choose to buy more of.
I’ve been wanting to taste this one, every since I received my Upton samples. The smell in the package was amazing (love almond/cinnamon).
The green tea in this blend tastes very nice. Not overly aggressive, a bit grassy…pleasant. The flavorings are light, not in your face, but there. I think I would like them to be more present, since the aroma of the dry leaves were so nice (but the taste left me wanting). Next time I’m going to try 2 minute steeping time, to maybe tone down the green tea, to give the flavorings a chance. Overall this is promising.
Cinnamon Roll Honeybush came in the mail today … dipping my little toe into the 52teas world for the first time. This one I should like, if any. The package did not have steeping instructions, so had to read through all the prior notes and strike a happy medium … 1-1/2 tsp./8 oz./195 for 7 minutes is how I prepared this.
Ok, so the tea … hmmmm, it smells really good. Can smell the cinnamon and a faint yeast factor. First sip, I’m getting the cinnamon for sure … not as strong as I had imagined it to be. Not getting any vanilla/icing, well maybe a little tiny bit in the background. I’m starting to think this may need steeped longer, because it’s a bit weak for my tastes. Hmmm ~ponders~
Testing 3 jasmine teas tonight, to answer the question: do I like jasmine teas? Adagio’s Jasmine Chun Hao kept me going (was good), but Mighty Leaf’s Organic Spring Jasmine kept me wondering (not good). Now I’m on my last one, and this is not exactly a sample size (2 oz.), so hoping it’s good to better.
First about the “pearls”… watched them expand and such, thinking it would be cute. Not! It reminded me of those big hairy spiders who roll into a little ball when they think you’re about to squish them. That’s what it reminded me of (sorry).
Ok, now the tea … made it according to site instructions. Can smell the jasmine in the brewed mug. Smells nice. Does not taste bitter at all, like the Mighty Leaf one did. It tastes very similar to the Adagio one to me. Hmmm, I think I know what jasmine tastes like now… not sure I like it, but if that’s what you’re seeking, this has it. The green tea is in the background, behaving. Overall I like this, but the price is going to keep it from being a “love it” one. Don’t like the aftertaste (jasmine?) The Adagio one made me happier : )
Testing 3 jasmine teas tonight, and this is the 2nd one (also Adagio’s Jasmine Chun Hao, which was ok/good and Teavana’s Jasmine Dragon Phoenix Pearls will be next).
The jasmine scent is stronger after brewing than the Adagio one, but the taste of the tea overall is bitter. Maybe jasmine tastes bitter? : ) Not liking this one as well as the Adagio one… and that is not even Adagio’s highest rated jasmine, but was included in a green sampler (their popular one is sold out atm). Nope, can’t finish this one. Not sure if it’s the tea or the jasmine, but no-can-do.
Ok, so still in testing mode (and probably will be for a while). Tonight’s question is, do I like jasmine teas? I like green teas, in a general sense, so will see. I keep seeing these cute little jasmine dragon balls everywhere, so it’s time to answer the question. I have 3 jasmines in my samples: this one, Mighty Leaf’s Organic Jasmine, and Teavana’s cute little balls : )
Ok, so I steeped it on the low end of their instructions: only 2 minutes. Pleasant enough, but a little weak (watery). Maybe it needs a longer steep, hmmm. With fragrance being another obsession, I’m very familiar with what jasmine smells like. I’m not getting a strong jasmine scent (no idea what it’s supposed to taste like).
I like this well enough to finish the sample, but there’s nothing here that’s crying my name or anything. Pleasant. Not bitter. I’m going to finish it, which says a lot …
Reading the prior reviews on this one, perhaps they’ve changed the formula this year? I just got a tin of this in December and I’m thinking it’s “ok” to good. A lot of the negative reviews seem to be a year ago, so hmmmm.
This has some of the spices I tend to like. The dominant flavors seem to be cinnamon, apple and licorice. The licorice is stepped up here, so maybe that turns people off, but it can be a sentimental taste for me (my Mom loved black licorice, and everyone knew it).
Oh, and I used 2 bags for about 10 oz. or so, because last time I tried it, it did seem a wee bit weak. They instruct to use 6 oz. per bag, so just upped it a little.
For technicalities, mine is labeled as Organic Spearmint BH45 (from Egypt).
I bought a 50g packet of this while ordering samples, because I love Adagio’s and thought they’d be (basically) the same. I made it according to instructions and do remember steeping Adagio’s closer to 10 minutes, so that could be the difference here … but this one is weak compared to Adagio’s. Added a tbs. of honey for sweetness and this is “ok” but not as yummy.
Have some of Stash’s on it’s way (if they’d ever ship my order from Monday…must be swamped from sale), so will compare all 3 when it gets here.
Testing 3 “spice” Upton teas tonight, and left this one for last (smelled the best!). Comparing it with Upton’s New England Harvest and Cinnamon Chai (so far, NE is in the lead).
Ok, so this is indeed more complex. The first two were dominated much more by the cinnamon. The black tea is not bitter, and is overshadowed by the spices (for me, this is not a bad thing, lol). I do not taste the coconut, but it shows itself in the aftertaste (yum). Loving how all the spices meld together so well. This isn’t strong spice to me, more “medium” on the spicy scale (preferred).
Oh gosh, this is really really good. And I’ve been so compulsive with ordering lately, that I almost hoped it wasn’t … maybe putting it on my shopping list will suffice for now. Right now I’m thinking “this may be love” :)
Testing 3 Upton “spice” samples tonight and this is 2nd up (also tested NE Harvest and going to test Tropical Chai Spice).
Well, compairing it to NE Harvest, the tea is more prominent in this one and the black tea is not bitter either (not sure if same one?). I was expecting this to be the strongest “chai” spiced one of the three, but it’s not much stronger than NE Harvest. The only difference is that NE Harvest is basically a cinnamon tea, and this one has more going on… I can detect the clove, for example (love clove, but it’s weak in here). Overall I’m not enjoying this one as much as NE Harvest. It’s “ok”, will probably finish sample, but not reorder.
Since I found Upton by following Steepster, it’s perhaps fitting that my first remarks on the site is for theirs. I just received 8 samples today, and decided to test 3 “spiced” ones tonight. First up is this one, but will be comparing with Cinnamon Chai and Tropical Spice.
One of the problems I’ve had with flavored black teas, is the black tea itself can be very bitter (looking at you Adagio). This one isn’t (phew). Overall, the spices are blending well, with cinnamon definately the star. I’d classify this a “medium” spice, leaning towards mild. For those who don’t like chai spices that are too heavy-handed, this one might please. For me, they’re a little too light, but tasty/good (will finish sample).