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90

It appears I’m the first to taste this, and sadly, it appears I may be the last.

I went to look for this tea on The American Tea Room site, and I can no longer find “Berry Noir” available for purchase. There are other berry teas available from ATR now, but not a single-flavor blackberry.

Which is a shame, because the first thing I noticed when I opened the sample packet was the big honking dried blackberries among the tea leaves and a singularly amazing blackberry smell.

Alas, the poor blackberry. It seems to get short shrift in the berry world, taking a second seat to its more popular cousins, the blueberry, the raspberry and the strawberry. I will admit to putting it in my grocery basket as an afterthought when I’ve been berry shopping. And yet, I’m always very happy when I eat a really juicy blackberry. Though I can’t conjure the taste of blackberry in my mind in the same way I can with its little friends. Perhaps that explains the fate of this tea.

Would that it were not so. The tea’s steeped aroma is a deep, luscious blackberry peacefully co-existing with a mild tea base that I suspect is Ceylon. The liquor, in any case, is very similar in color to the other single fruit blends I’ve tried from ATR.

The taste is remarkable. Really, truly, like having a mouthful of sweet berries with each sip. And since they’re not blue, rasp, straw, or any lesser known berries I’ve tasted, I’m comfortable with the idea that they’re blackberries.

This would definitely go on the shopping list if only it still existed.

Le sigh.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec
JustJames

damn! i love blackberry! ah well, i have a ton of tea…. =0)

__Morgana__

James, I know, right?

Fjellrev

Aww, too bad they took it away from you. I like blackberries, but I’ll admit that I prefer more sour berries such as raspberries.

__Morgana__

Fjellrev, I like raspberries a lot, too. This tea was really awesome though.

MissB

I’d send them a note; I’m finding them really easy to work with, and they’ll tell you if it’s a temporary or permanent removal.

__Morgana__

Thanks, MissB, that’s a great suggestion.

American Tea Room

We can tell you – we now offer two teas – Blushing Berry (which has all the red fruit – currants and strawberries) AND Black & Blue (which has all the black and blue fruit – blueberries, blackberries) SO my guess is you would like the Black & Blue – sorry we no longer have your favorite but we think these two are awesome as well.

__Morgana__

Thank you. I’ll be sure to try them!

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Comments

JustJames

damn! i love blackberry! ah well, i have a ton of tea…. =0)

__Morgana__

James, I know, right?

Fjellrev

Aww, too bad they took it away from you. I like blackberries, but I’ll admit that I prefer more sour berries such as raspberries.

__Morgana__

Fjellrev, I like raspberries a lot, too. This tea was really awesome though.

MissB

I’d send them a note; I’m finding them really easy to work with, and they’ll tell you if it’s a temporary or permanent removal.

__Morgana__

Thanks, MissB, that’s a great suggestion.

American Tea Room

We can tell you – we now offer two teas – Blushing Berry (which has all the red fruit – currants and strawberries) AND Black & Blue (which has all the black and blue fruit – blueberries, blackberries) SO my guess is you would like the Black & Blue – sorry we no longer have your favorite but we think these two are awesome as well.

__Morgana__

Thank you. I’ll be sure to try them!

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Profile

Bio

I’ve updated this bio as it’s been a couple of years since I “started getting into” tea. It’s now more accurate to say that I was obsessed with tea for a while, then other things intruded, then I cycled back to it, and I seem to be continuing that in for a while, out for a while cycle. I have a short attention span, but no shortage of tea.

I’m a mom, writer, gamer, lawyer, reader, runner, traveler, and enjoyer of life, literature, art, music, thought and kindness, in no particular order. I’ve recently started writing fantasy and science fiction under the name J. J. Roth.

Personal biases: I much prefer to drink tea without additives such as milk and sugar. If a tea needs additives to improve its flavor, its unlikely I’m going to rate it high. The exception is chai, which I make on the stove top using a recipe I found here on Steepster. Rooibos and honeybush were my gateway drugs into the harder stuff, but once I learned how to make a decent cup of tea they became far less appealing to me. That said, I’m not entirely a purist, and I enjoy a good flavored tea, particularly flavored blacks.

I like all kinds of tea depending on time of day, mood, and the amount of time I have to pay attention to preparation.

Since I find others’ rating legends helpful, I added my own. I’m revising them slightly to make them less granular as I don’t really find myself hating most things I try.

I try to rate teas against other similar versions. So I rate Earl Greys, for example, against other Earl Greys, rather than against all teas. If something rates very high with me, though, it probably means it’s a stand out against all other teas I’ve tried.

95-100 A once in a lifetime experience; the best there is; will keep this stocked until the cows come home

90-94 First rate; top notch; really terrific; will definitely buy more

80-89 Excellent; likely to become a favorite, will likely buy more

70-79 Very good; would enjoy again, might buy again if in the mood for this particular one or a better, similar version not available

60-69 Good; wouldn’t pass up if offered, but probably wouldn’t buy again unless craving this particular flavor

50-59 Okay or run of the mill

Below 50 So-so, iffy, would definitely pass
or ick. The lower the number, the closer to ick.

Location

Bay Area, California

Website

http://www.jjroth.net

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