American Tea Room
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Recent Tasting Notes
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.
While not quite as delicious as Brioche (can any dessert tea beat that one???), it is very tasty. Very nutty with a hint of preserved fruit flavor as well as very mild spiciness. The black base is bold enough, but it lets the flavoring shine.
It smells heavenly, too! Good yum to start the afternoon with.
This tea smells really interesting and has huge chunks of (presumably) figs and nuts in the dry leaf. The taste is mostly roasted sesame wrapped around figginess. It’s not quite figs, but it has a certain figginess to it. Yes, I know figginess is not a word, but it’s the only way I could think of to describe it. Overall, it’s a pretty pleasant cup, but it won’t be a tea that I’ll order again.
The tea was pretty disappointing to me. It doesn’t taste bad, but the flavors are really weak. I don’t taste any coconut at all (sad face) and I only get a whisper of pineapple in the aftertaste. Even so, it doesn’t really taste like actual pineapple at all, more like a pineapple candy flavor. This may have been my fault because I brewed it with boiling water rather than the recommended 185F, which I didn’t notice until I was pouring the boiling water. I think I’ll try this as a cold brew.
Aside from Brioche I have been pretty disappointed with American Tea Room teas. Consequently, when I see one, I don’t have high expectations for it. However, this was a pleasant surprise. It is rich and malty with notes of caramel, vanilla, and chocolate. Yum!
In other news, I checked the description and my tastes are way off (aside from the malt) of what this is meant to be. Oh well.
I decided to start the morning with this tea, which is the only American Tea Room tea I’ve liked a lot. Of course, I’ve only had four, but this one is a winner. So cinnamon-roll-y and delicious! It’s a good thing I decided to have a stay-at-home data analysis day since I set the time on my alarm clock but did not turn it on. Despite the fact that I am a reasonably intelligent adult human, I do that quite a lot. What is wrong with me lol
Edit: So nice I steeped it twice :)
Flavors: Baked Bread, Cinnamon
This tea is amazing. I drank it with sweetener and frothed milk and it tastes just like a cinnamon roll. Seriously, just like it with the icing and all! So bready and yeasty with cinnamon….mmmmmmmm. How do they do that? This tea is the very best version of having your cake and eating it too because you get to have your breakfast pastry and not get fat.
Flavors: Baked Bread, Cinnamon
sitting in the library waiting for hours five, six and seven of classes to start and thought i’d play catch up.
if i go light on the word count i could stop at ‘wow’. add to that ‘damn’ (because i just got a sample size), and ‘jam’ or maybe ‘more!!!!’……. do exclamation points count as extra words?
i have no idea what’s going on with ATR. i don’t now if they’re refining, reviewing, tweaking- all of the above? pretty sure it isn’t my tongue. needless to say they have impressed me immensely lately whereas before they were interesting, but not incredible. goes to show businesses improve and bring their products along for the ride.
this blend is apricot jam. a hint of the stone is detectable, convincing me that it’s fresh in my cup.
awesome. now for some last minute reading……
Thank you Kat Maria! (187)
I brewed it hot and I’m enjoying this fruity green/white, but it’s just a little bit of strawberries, and oddly, a little bit of butter, and comfort, and it’s nice and all that, but I don’t know that I’d take it home to meet my mother or anything like that.
Speaking of… mother’s day this weekend! :O I have little time to dig up some kind of gift and ensure she gets it in time. #failed I bought her tea before but I don’t know that she’s actually drinking it or would want any more. :| And we rarely speak. Ugh. We did take a mold of my 2yo at work, so maybe I can send her a copy of my daughter’s feet? It’ll be late but something like that might be cool.
Ok, back to work. Back to drinking tea!
ETA So all the new Summer teas are out, so I grabbed the Summer pack and mailed that to her (in BC, so it’ll be late). Even if she doesn’t drink a lot of tea, she DOES like iced tea, especial decaf ones! #patsselfonback I also sent her the bubble pineapple mugs bc they’re cute.