166 Tasting Notes
Thanks to Nature’s Tea Leaf for a sample of this.
I’ve been having all sorts of random health issues lately, and when I saw this herbal tea, it really intrigued me. It’s supposed to work for a variety of things including IBS and sore throat, just to name a few. I had never had it before, but I was willing to give it a shot.
This is definitely one of the more fun herbal teas. The tea “leaves” themselves are really interesting. It reminds me of cotton. You’re supposed to get 2tsp of it, but it’s really difficult to get exact. I just plopped a bunch on measuring spoon and called it a day. The tea brewed up this nice light-pinkish color. Very intriguing, since you don’t see that too often in tea.
The tea itself has a nice taste. There’s this light sweetness that I enjoyed. It doesn’t really need any additional sweetener and it’s fine on its own. The tea did have a nice soothing effect, as well.
If you want to have some fun, I recommend this fun little experiment:
Brew this tea in T-Sac. Steep as normal, and then take the T-sac out when ready. Let it cool. Then, when it’s cool, feel the t-sac. It has this crazy jelly/gelatin like feel. It reminds me of one of those fun toys at the Science Center. Call me crazy, but it provided amusement for me. Your mileage may vary.
Thanks to Jackie T for this tea.
This was actually tea that I acquired for my boyfriend who loves banana teas. He chose to brew it today, though, and as a tea lover how can I turn down a sample of free tea?
If you love banana flavor, this is a very good tea. The banana flavor is definitely strong in this. Someone once compared it to “Banana Runts” and I think that’s a pretty spot-on comparison. It does have sort of an artificial/candy taste to it. The flavor does work surprisingly well with the genmaicha, I’m actually quite impressed. I don’t taste the cheesecake flavor much when hot, but as it cools that creamy flavor comes through.
If you’re not a banana fan this tea won’t necessarily turn you into one, but it’s very interesting indeed.
Thanks to Zen Tea for this sample.
This is yummy green tea that looks very interesting, too. It has a nice green tea taste that’s not too vegetal, although there are some notes there. It’s more buttery than anything else. It is not overly floral, which is nice since I find a lot of these hand-rolled teas can sometimes tend to be.
A very smooth tea with no bitterness or astringency. Definitely a pleasant tea for green tea lovers like me.
Originally I wasn’t going to order anything from Teavana, but then I made the mistake of looking at their sale and seeing their awesome prices. And then I caved. My order is still in processing (and I’m still waiting on an e-mail from them). This tea is not from this order.
I thought I had ordered this tea, but I looked at my receipt and saw that I didn’t. I was NOT going to go to the mall, but I really wanted this tea, and customer service was not answering. So, I called up my local Teavana to ask if they still had this tea in stock. Sure enough, they did (and lots of it), so hi-ho to Teavana I go. I probably could have picked up some other teas had I just waited, but eh. Here’s hoping my order ships all right because a few of the teas aren’t even showing up anymore.
I also wanted to go to Teavana because I bought a Yixing mug on black friday at 40%. It was discounted to 50% the day after Christmas, and I wanted to get a price adjustment since I was in my return window. Well, I learned that you can’t return sale items (boo). But the manager took pity on me and gave me free tea (yay!).
I almost didn’t pick this tea up at all. So many of this on sale teas had mixed reviews. This one got not so bad reviews. I was warned that this does not have a strong green tea flavor and I will repeat – it does NOT have a strong green tea flavor. I can’t taste any tea at all. The hibiscus is strong with this one, and it’s definitely a fruity tea. It’s a good tea for people who don’t like tea, but from reading the other reviews it also appears kinda finicky. I bet this would be a really good iced tea. I hot brewed this, but maybe next time I should cold brew it.
It’s not overly tart, though, which is nice. I’ll give it a somewhat higher score and cold brew it and see what I think later..
My local tea shop had a blending class for the holidays, and my awesome boyfriend actually bought me a spot in the blending class as an early Christmas/Chanukah gift. To thank him for such an awesome gift, I decided to make a tea specifically for him. I really REALLY wanted to make him a banana tea, but they only had so many flavors and add-ins, and I had to abandon that idea. But while blending and mixing teas, I came across another great idea. My boyfriend loves candied nuts, but they are not the healthiest thing around (plus they are pricey, yo). So I decided to make a tea blend out of it, instead. I also got to cup it along the way, which was nice, but after cupping teas 10 or 15 times, you get a little stick to your stomach. :-p
For this tea, I used white peony (white tea) as the base, added in some chrysanthemum to help give it some nutty taste, and I added cornflower petals to make it look pretty. We had a few flavoring oils we could apply, so I used an almond and caramel flavoring. The almond was nice, but the caramel really gave it that candy coating.
I unveiled the tea at Christmas yesterday and my boyfriend was so excited he had to brew it tonight. The tea has a very strong scent (maybe too strong), but when you brew it, it mellows out. It’s actually quite nice.
The tea master who taught the class thought that mixing such strong flavors with a white tea was a bad idea and I should have stuck to black or rooibos tea. But, whatevz. My boyfriend and I are not fans of black tea, and white tea can be pricey. Plus, white blends are fun. The white tea does take a back seat and you can’t really taste it, but that’s not such a bad thing.
All in all, it’s not bad for my very first tea blend with flavorings. I don’t know if I’m going to become a master tea blender anytime soon, but I think I did well.
Merry Christmas (and happy late Chanukah). I got this tea, along with many others, for my boyfriend for Christmas. He was originally drawn to this tea because he is a fan of the Tampa Bay Buccaneer football team (which didn’t have such a great season this year). He also likes rooibos. I was originally going to buy this tea online but hated the idea of having to buy 4 oz at a time, so I eventually just gave up. Then, one fateful day on my vacation to Austin, Texas, I was browsing in Central Market (a very awesome grocery store) and saw this tea in bulk. Hooray! I could buy a small amount of this tea afterall.
And so, this was the first tea he decided to try tonight of all his lovely teas. It also didn’t hurt that it was late and it’s best to have a caffeine free tea.
This tea is quite pleasant. Rooibos is not always my favorite tea, but this tea is quite nice. I’m definitely getting creamy and some subtle chocolate too. Not really getting much fruity in here, but that’s not okay. There’s a slight bitterness, which is probably from the black tea that I didn’t realize was in here until afterwards – oops. But this tea is still quite lovely.
My boyfriend says, “It has a nice buttery aroma and has a strong rooibos taste. I like it.”
12 Days of Christmas (52Teas) – Day 12
Could it be? I’m actually opening up a tea, consuming it, and writing a tasting note, all on the appropriate day? It only took me a full 12 days to do so!
When I first opened this tea and smelled it, it smelled like the grasshopper cookies. It definitely sounded intriguing. But when I brewed it.. I don’t know, the flavors just fell short for me. I get notes of mint, marshmallow, and even chocolate, but none of them are overpowering. Maybe I’m just so used to my mint teas being overpowering I expect them to? I think it’s also the base. Not really a fan of that, either. Not sure what it is because my black tea knowledge is limited.
12 Days of Christmas Tea – Day 10
Yes, I’m not really logging these in correct order. This one is actually a backlog, but I have other teas I haven’t even tried yet. So .. uh.. don’t expect them to be numerical, but they’ll get there eventually.
This was a custom blend from KeenTeaThyme and it came in a cute little tin and everything. It was actually quite delicious. The spearmint and cinnamon was quite strong, but I didn’t really taste any guayusa. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. This tea also has gold sparkles in it, which I didn’t realize until AFTER I brewed it in a dark cup. D’oh. Next time, I’ll brew this in a white cup so I can enjoy the sparkles.
As a side note, I actually took a tea blending class in early December. I wish it would have been early enough for my Christmas swap b/c I would love to have designed a tea around my Christmas day theme. But, alas, it was not meant to be.
12 Days of Christmas Tea – Day 11
I am VERY behind on my tealogging (and slightly behind on my tea drinking). This came from Sil and it has a very strong scent – so strong I could smell it through the envelope. I originally thought it was a Lapsang base because of the smokiness, but apparently it’s something different (err.. I’m not sure what exactly).
It’s not bad. I’m not a big Lapsang fan, so I’ve got that working against me. I also think I taste some bergamot, so it tastes more like an “Earl Grey Lapsang” (which I’ll have to check after this note if such a blend exists).
I gave the tea to my boyfriend to try without any prior context (a popular pastime of mine) and he said it tasted like barley. I thought that was an odd comment, but when I did some homework, apparently this tea is like a single-malt whiskey (which is made with barley). I also learned what a single-malt whiskey is, since I know so little about alcohol.
So I’m still on vacation in Austin today, and I went to not one tea store, but TWO (I’ll have to write about the other one later). I’ve heard of this tea company before, but I didn’t realize they had a storefront. So, I decided to check it out.
It’s quite nice, even though it’s off the beaten path. At first I was a little annoyed that they only sell loose tea in 8 oz increments OR in tins, but upon further inspection they also sell their flavors in “sample bags” that range around $4. So, that’s not too bad.
I was unsure of whether or not I wanted this tea, so the lady actually offered to brew me a sample. It’s not bad. A little bitter, but that’s to be expected with grapefruit. The flavor was nice, but I didn’t really think it was a tea I would drink every day, so I didn’t buy it. I DID, however, see some milk chocolate with jasmine tea in it, that I picked up for my BF since he LOVES Jasmine. Hopefully he does.
Also, kinda random, but the lady behind the counter kept referring to the teas as "he"s and "she"s. So, for this tea, she would say, “She can be quite bitter without too much brewing, but she has a nice flavor.” It threw me off a little bit.