150 Tasting Notes
From the Caffeine Free sampler set.
A minty herbal grounded by chamomile. I do think valerian does make me sleep a little easier than just straight chamomile, but taste-wise this tisane isn’t that different from any other sleepytime blend involving mint and chamomile. I like those blends, so I like this, but I think I’ll stick to the proverbial Sleepytime(which now that I think about it, might have an even stronger mint-chamomile flavor). ;)
From the Caffeine Free sampler set.
If you are like me and don’t like licorice flavors, you probably won’t like this tea. At first look, this seems like any other minty citrus nighttime blend. Lemongrass, spearmint, rosehips, no big deal. I am good with all these things. It even smells like a typical sleepytime tea. Nope.
I’m not saying the fennel and licorice is loud or overwhelming, it does mix quite well with the other flavors, but I just am not fond of that flavor at all, so I would not try this again. If you do like licorice, go for it! This is the relaxing herbal for you.
Frm the Sweet Indulgences sampler set.
I’ve never tasted a goji berry in my life, so I have no idea how true this tea is to flavor. What I can say is that it smells berry-ish and sweet and is an attractive coral pink. You do have to use a generous amount of tea, though. On my first try it was a pale pink and didn’t have much of a taste either.
When it comes to taste, there is a sour, citrusy berry note that fades into sweetness. I enjoyed it more as it got closer to room temperature, so this would probably be lovely iced. I’m not sure if I would buy more of this, but it was a nice fruity treat at the end of a long, hot day.
My first earl grey cream, and definitely not my last. The dry tea leaves smell like dessert, really.
Waiting for this tea to cool down from piping hot is crucial. Whenever I tried it straight out of the steeper, I always got a slightly astringent flavor from what I assumed was the black tea base. Be patient and the vanilla flavoring shines through, creating that creamy sensation.
Vanilla is the star in this tea. The bergamot is present but not loud. I’d also like to note that some days my cup had an inexplicable thin feeling. Other days it had good body, so I’m guessing I need to be careful not to underleaf. Going to check out other earl grey creams for sure.
From the Caffeine Free sampler. A heavily citrus-flavored herbal blend with hints of tang and tartness, but is sweet at the same time. When hot, it reminded me of David’s Orange Blossom, with just a tad bit of mint and pucker. As it cooled, the tartness faded into a mellow grapefruit-like flavor. I think this would make great iced tea.
I’m beginning to think I might not like marshmallow root. Or at least not in tea. That’s the one ingredient this tea has in common with another one I didn’t enjoy. Anyhow, I couldn’t figure out how to finish even one cup of this. I tried less tea, more tea, less time, and more time.
Such a shame, because I love s’mores, and this smelled so good! Even though I couldn’t see any mini marshmallows, I did see the little chocolate bits and some graham crackers. Funnily enough, this tea tasted better to me the longer I let it steep, even though I tend to dislike strong black tea, so while the black base is present, it’s not astringent. Tasted a LOT better to me with milk and sugar, but still. Not my favorite.
Another little tin from the Sweet Indulgences set.
A lot of fruit in this blend. Not sure exactly what the fruit pieces are, but I’m guessing some dried mango is in there. (Just looked up the ingredients, and apparently there is apple and pineapple, too! Well, whatever fruit there was, there was one piece that was bigger than a quarter. Pretty impressive.)
Despite all that fruit, the tea base actually came through in the cup, creating a nice balance to the light fruit juice style flavors that were dominant. To me, it tasted like a watery version of mango juice, which is not a bad thing at all. Hot, this tea had a hint of tartness that completely disappeared once it cooled down to room temperature. Sweet without any added sugar.
So I see that some tasters have noticed variations in quality between batches of this, which would explain my experience with this tea. I was looking forward to drinking this. Between the strong maple syrup smell, apt name, cute maple leaf candies, I was ready to love this tea. It just wasn’t meant to be.
I was hugely disappointed with what turned out to be a very weak rooibos with a hint of maple – a tiny hint. At 5 minutes it was weak but drinkable, at 7 minutes it gained an unpleasant aftertaste and was a bit chemical. Adding actual maple syrup to sweeten it only seemed to emphasize the weird off-ness of the drink. I’m really hoping that I can try this again and have a better experience.
Another one from the Lucky Bag.
I went through this one pretty quickly! The curled-up little leaves smell delicious and tip so nicely into the steeper. The scent matches up with the promised ripe pineapple and coconut. My first instinct was to cold-brew this, but I believe I left it too long at 5 hours, as I found the underlying flavor of the oolong too floral and a bit bitter. Turns out I like this a lot better when it is steeped for a few minutes at about 160-170 and let cool to drinking temperature. The fruity pineapple really shines then and makes a delicious and sweet cup.