American Tea Room
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Recent Tasting Notes
Ick!!! I could not finish my cup, It has everything I thought I loved in it but I’m beginning to beleive I don’t like vanilla tea anymore and this reminds me alot of ATR vanilla tea with a little bit of bergamot and some flowers. I hope it is just a phase and I will like it again when the weather changes because my mom has a 24 hour layover in London and I have requested a vanilla tea that I loved from Harrods. I think its just me since most reviewers seem to like it. If I figure out how I like it I will be sure to update.
I put off trying this sample quite sometime for a variety of reasons, at least one of which was an abbreviated ingredient list. I love American Tea Room to an almost shameful degree, but their lack of specificity as to what constitutes, say, “maple,” always leaves me a little skittish. However, this blend in particular is organic, and in an effort to start depleting my overfilled cupboards, I decided to give Canada a shot.
I was surprised (and a little uneasy) at how dark a green the resultant liquor turned. Honestly, I was expecting a mouthful of artificial sweetness that made my stomach clench up. But after the first sip, I was forced to admit that I had wronged this delightful little tea. There is a nuttiness present in the brew that evens out the maple notes, and I believe it’s further mellowed by the base. The maple itself isn’t the overpowering stuff that you drown your morning waffles in, but a more subtle, nuanced flavor.
After I drained it down, I peered dubiously into the bottom of my mug, wondering if maybe my low expectations had skewed my opinion. Not so, apparently, as the second steep was just as tasty, if a little less vibrantly green. While I probably wouldn’t purchase this tea in bulk, I certainly wouldn’t shun it if it happened to show up on my doorstep again.
Flavors: Caramel, Maple, Walnut
I finally have a few days off from work. And do you know what I’m going to do? Drink obscene amounts of tea! I’ve missed my tea :( Anyways, I’ve been saving the last of this sample for when I can just enjoy it. I love this tea! It’s sooo good. It reminds me of those cinnamon almonds you get at sporting events or any kind of event, actually. It’s full of cinnamon, almond, and custard flavors. Mmmm :)
Flavors: Almond, Cinnamon, Custard, Sugar
I had a perfectly lovely Saturday. We went to a creperie for lunch, and it was quite delicious – I got the ratatouille crepe, yums! They also have tasty pommes frites and a variety of creative dipping sauces (I got the curry mayo). Oh, and I got a Moroccan mint tea that was actually quite good! Then we lazed about on the couch for a few hours, which happens to be my favorite weekend activity. I’ve spent the last couple of hours browsing yixing pots on AliExpress for no reason whatsoever (and adding about a million to my wishlist). I think I would like to get a basic yixing soon, to use for black teas. I wouldn’t mind having one for just Yunnans, actually… :P
Anyway, this tea. It’s perfectly nice and I like the almond flavor, and I find it to be very snuggly and comforting with sugar and soy milk added. It’s not a fantastic tea in my opinion, but I can see it being a good desserty standby. Thanks again to Stephanie for sending me a sample! :)
Miss Stephanie was nice enough to send me a sample of this tea. It’s a fairly famous one around here, and I’ve been curious about it for quite some time. I generally love almond and brioche is delicious, of course! So even though I’m not loving flavored teas as much these days, I was still excited to try this. There are some slices of almond mixed in with the tea, along with those tiny red flower petals that seem to be in every flavored black tea lately. Dry, it smells quite lovely and sweet with a definite almond influence.
Honestly, I wasn’t terribly impressed with this when I tried it straight. Sugar helped a bit. But milk (in my case, vanilla soy) is certainly the secret ingredient here, it makes this taste infinitely more pastry-like and buttery. I can definitely taste the almond, but it’s not a marzipan taste, just nutty and buttery almonds. There’s a little dash of cinnamon, and it really adds a lovely dimension to the tea. I’m almost reminded of French toast, but made with brioche of course! I think next time I’ll brew this a little bit stronger so it’ll stand up to the milk better.
Right now I don’t think I would order this, mostly because I don’t tend to reach for flavored teas as much. Also, I haven’t tried anything else from American Tea Room, and I can’t imagine making an order for just one tea unless it was the best tea ever…
Flavors: Almond, Cinnamon, Cream, Custard, Pastries, Vanilla
Made the last of this one from VariaTEA in my timolino. Honestly, I can probably sum up the whole thing by just saying that it wasn’t nearly as good as the cold brew but I suppose I’ll break it down a little more.
Pretty much it was just a straight up, simple, no frills coconut/pineapple similar to the cold brew but with the difference of the coconut being somewhat significantly more flavourful than the pineapple. Additionally, I kept getting cocoa notes from the black base, and I thought they weren’t meshing well with the rest of the tea. That’s probably the biggest reason it wasn’t as good as the cold brew: no cocoa in the cold version.
Side Question: Anyone played the Stanley Parable? I watched a few LPs of it last night and it looks super interesting. Debating making Tre get it on his Steam Account so I can play…
And I’m onto tasting notes from today!
Thank you VariaTEA for the sample of this one! I know you sent it to me a while back, but I’m just getting to it now. Oops.
I cold brewed it because Pineapple/Coconut black cold brew? Hell yeah! And really, it’s good but very straight forward. Like literally, it’s exactly what’s promised: Black tea, coconut, and pineapple. The coconut is really up front, and the pineapple is more noticeable in the end of this sip but they’re both there.
There’s enough leaf left for a hot brew, so I guess I’ll do that with the rest of it and see if anything else becomes more apparent. As is, it’s good but average. I do love me some Pineapple and Coconut though, so I definitely, definitely appreciate the thoughtful sample!
Flavors: Coconut, Pineapple
This last cup fail flat, I could still taste the vanilla bean I’ve adored in the past but it was almost like drinking vanilla water. It was a sample size that was not stored well that could be the problem. I’m not even sure if I like vanilla tea anymore after drinking this, which I need to figure out quick because I planned on having my mom bring back a ton of my favorite from London next month. Before tonight I had thought of this as one I would order if I was placing an order anyways and was running low on vanilla tea, now I’m not sure. Hopefully I just did not store it correctly.
Thanks JustJames for sending this along to me. It was a delicious tea that I enjoyed (216)!
I taste delicious maltiness, and cinnamon and fresh air. I see it’s from the Sun Moon Lake region and it makes me think of all those teas from TTC that I’ve been sampling and I suddenly regret not tasting them closer enough to really compare the two. But, ah well. That’s how it goes. So many delicious teas – I’ll never be able to keep them straight so I will just savour each one as I get to it.
SSTTB: Pick #17
Made this one in my timolino this morning for work. There are a couple neat looking straight blacks in The Box but this one really caught my attention because it’s a Taiwanese black and I was wondering how many similarities I’d be able to draw between it and Butiki’s Taiwanese Wild Mountain Black.
And I actually did notice some similarities; this had the same sort of waffle-y notes to it that TWMB has, and some soft maltiness to it. Overall this was really calming and so smooth – but I do like TWMB better; that one just has more flavour overall and I think it’s a bit naturally sweeter.
But this one was good! I’d totally drink it again – but this was the last of it. Oh well; I just stocked up on TWMB anyway…
After breakfast tea, another generous sample from Boychik.
This is a lightly smokey tea, & by that I mean not really smokey at all, maybe just a hint. Add an overlay of tart & tangy, from the blood orange, & there you have it. :)
Sipdown: Tony took a whiff of this & decided he wanted to try a cup for himself, so I brewed up the rest of it for him. He likes his tea with some of that crystal sugar in it, & I’m happy to report, he said it is “Delicious!”
Pleasantly surprised by this sample I received with an order from ATR. They hit the lemon perfectly with this blend – for me, good intensity and nice flavor. Best use of bergamot that I’ve ever experienced – - I am usually not at all a fan — but here it lies in the background as a low-key accent. The overall flavor intensity is strong but not overbearing.
2nd steep still has a lot of flavor though unfortunately the bergamot comes out of the wings and settles in the front row. Next time no resteeping for me :) though bergamot fans will consider it lovely, still having a nice balance of lemon to it.
If you are looking for a lemony tea I would recommend this; it has a more sophisticated flavor profile than you’d expect in a lemon tea, and it tastes natural.
I’ve never gotten the baked bread/pastry flavor in a tea until this, and it’s present here in a big way, and deliciously so. The flavor complementarity is a trip because it is so close to a pastry experience. Or Challah with marzipan (as Boychik called it) cinnamon french toast with maple syrup.
Second steep retains the novelty though with the cinnamon picking up the spiciness a bit in the foreground.While the flavor is wonderful, the overall experience of this tea is a little light. I would score this much higher if the black base had more depth – that would be superb tea. I look forward to experimenting blending this tea in combo with richer blacks since the flavor profile seems strong enough to hold up.
Flavors: Cinnamon, Maple Syrup, Pastries, Vanilla
Nice black -orange combo. Scores high on flavor profile but only medium on depth, which is the main feature I enjoy about blacks. Would benefit from upping the leaf volume per cup. I had to follow this with a cup of Samovar’s Blood Orange Puerh as comparison and found the latter had far more dimension to it, still a favorite despite its ginger component.
Plan is to try adding cocoa shells or nibs to this next time around.
This might be the best smelling tea I have. The dry leaves are just incredibly vibrant. I have the new and improved formula which supposedly has more vanilla. Sniffing the leaves from the bag is just down right gluttonous.
Doctor told me to do dark chocolate in moderation, otherwise this would be my go to cup of tea before bedtime every night. It just has this warm, soothing comforting, down home feel. Think back to your childhood and drinking hot cocoa on a cold day. But now you add in the complexity of the vanilla and of course Rooibos. Rooibos thins out the brew so it’s not heavy at all, but you still get a mouthful of delicious chocolate and vanilla base.
I add a little bit of milk and a heaping teaspoon of honey and it’s just spot on.
Delicious. Wish I didn’t have this damn A Fib keeping me from it.
Flavors: Chocolate, Vanilla
This tea was brought to me by the superb mj1851 and I have to say I quite like it! I added some milk to cool it down because I was too impatient to wait and I feel like it was a good decision. I feel like it has an artificial vanilla extract quality, in the sense that when you smell it it’s soft vanilla, and when you taste it black, it’s probably a bit stronger than one would expect. Thank you mj1851 for this: is good!
I won’t lie, I was a bit sketched out about this one. It was quite different from anything I’ve tried, but I love figs and dates, so I kind of knew I would probably like it. My cup gives off a strong aroma of dates, figs and malt. If you smell it without focusing on different scents, it smells a lot like maraschino cherries. The flavour is wonderful, mostly figs, with a wonderful nuttiness and dark cherry notes. It also has a very interesting milky quality both in terms of texture and taste. Yum.
Thank you mj1851 for sending this my way :D
Poppies are in bloom, awwww!
Anyway, here’s another backlog from the weekend. I cooked up most of the sample of this that ATR sent me as an extra. It wasn’t exquisite but pretty agreeable. It reminded me some of Zen Tea’s Earl Grey Creme (which is yum x 10!) but it wasn’t quite as fancy.
It made for a nice cup that accompanies one while they are focusing on something else. I wouldn’t get more of it and, besides, when it comes to ATR’s greys I am enjoying their Earl Grey Shanghai much more – which is what I am having right now.
The scent of the dry leaf reminds me of David’s Tea ’ s forever nuts. Taste-wise, it’s a whole different story. I love that I can clearly taste the base. The taste on the tongue is a bit nutty, with cinnamon, it’s good.
But the magic happens when you exhale. All those pastry notes come out to play, and frosting was invited. It’s truly wonderful, like taking a deep breath before the next bite of your warm, sticky cinnamon bun.
mj1851 told me it was "get it in my mouth now* good. Girl, I agree
Ok I’ve just
chugged sipped on another cooler cup. Now the taste of the exhale is the taste of the tea altogether. MUST BUY.
This tea was different than other vanilla teas that I have. The vanilla had less of a creamy, desert-like quality to it. It reminded me more of that vanilla taste you get from bourbon.I may have under-leafed this cup a tiny bit, but the flavors weren’t rich enough for me. The black base was unremarkable. Despite the fact that this tea had a somewhat unique taste, it was still a meh experience.