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Recent Tasting Notes
As we head toward winter in the great southern land I am finally letting myself crack out the trio of wintry tea samplers I picked up from Argo Tea in the Flatiron building in NYC.
Looking at the trio closely, this one is the one I was most drawn to. It has a lot of similar ingredients/flavour indicators as one of my favourite tisanes ever, T2’s Cinnamon Somersault.
I am getting slightly bitter notes from the amount of cinnamon in this, but though I’m not getting a lot of orange, the almond is just nice without being "essence"y. Not bad. It’s no Cinnamon Somersault, but it’s not bad. I might try splicing it with some Cocoa Loco Orange and see if that’s closer to my sweet spot.
I couldn’t help but to cold brew this one again because I really enjoyed it last time. It’s definitely heavy on the toasted rice flavor when I prepare it this way. Still waiting to rate this until I have it hot as well, so let’s hope I get around to doing that before I use it all up on cold brewing!
I realized that I never tried this tea that’s been sitting in my shelf for a bit now. So I continued my cold brewing obsession with this genmaicha. First off, there were quite a few popped rice bits in the tea. I think that translated into the ultimate taste. I was tasting a lot more of the toasted rice flavor than the green tea base. I actually really like this one as a cold brew, but I will reserve my rating for when I can try it out hot to more directly compare to other genmaichas I’ve had.
I guess I don’t know much about Argo tea and there don’t seem to be a lot of reviews for their blends, despite me coming across them in NYC. Any insight, anyone?
This blend is one of three jarred blends I bought on a below-freezing day that I voyaged through the flatiron district. Is it a district? Argo tea was literally nestled in the base of the flatiron building itself, and I stopped in to ward off the cold with a hot beverage. The teas along the wall looked pretty good and in my freezing stupor I assumed they were just what they said on their labels (in this case: oolong and coconut), not more complex blends.
Darn you, licorice root. You curse everything good in this world.
This is a ready to drink beverage from Argo tea. It’s sweet, but I like that I can taste the white tea here. Given that this is a “lemonade/tea” blend, and that it’s been sweetened, it’s kind of a surprise to me that I was able to taste the white tea … but, I did! It’s not a particularly prominent flavor, it has a delicate taste, slightly earthy … but then again, most white tea is delicate.
My one complaint is that I wish there was less of the lemonade and acai berry here and more of the white tea flavor … but as it is, I enjoyed it. It wasn’t overly syrupy, it wasn’t cloying … it was refreshing. Nice.
Aroma: Nutty, roasted, vegetal
Liquor Color: Bright yellow
Liquor Flavor: Nutty, deep roasted flavor with a light vegetal taste
Notes: Meh. It was so so. Not something I really hate but not something I really like either. Seemed like it had very few actual tea leaves in there and lots of rice.
I got the sweetest surprise on Christmas Eve – this tea was waiting for me at my door from a wonderful tea friend! I like honey and lemon, so this was right up my alley, and living in Carolina, of course I love the name! I had a cup of this yesterday afternoon, and it was exactly as expected. It has a fresh, tart lemon flavor with a hint of honey sweetness. Add a little milk and sugar and it becomes a creamy, lemony dessert cup. The tea comes in a beautiful recycled glass bottle, which looks so pretty sitting in my tea cupboard. I’m glad I have this tea to keep me warm during the winter months ahead, and every time I see it, I will be reminded of my far away tea friend. :)
-Dry blend has medium black tea leaves and twigs with yellow and orange petals.
-Dry leaves smell like fresh lemon with a hint of sweetness. Tea liquor aroma is malty with a sweet honey aroma and a small taste of tart lemon.
-Tea liquor is a clear medium brown yellow color.
-Tart lemon flavor with a rich malty finish. Strong honey lemon aftertaste that lingers.
-Best with milk and sweetener.
-Very good tea. A unique cup that becomes a sweet creamy decadent lemon flavor with milk and sweetener. Wonderful honey and lemon aftertaste.
Aroma: Cinnamon, spice
Liquor color: Dark yellow
Liquor flavor: Subtle cinnamon and orange. Weak green base. Thin.
Notes: I won this sample pack part of a black Friday promotion. Once again I wasn’t impressed. Just like the other sample, the green tea base was extremely lacking to the point I questioned if there was even tea in there. Cinnamon overpowered the orange flavor. Meh.
Aroma: Minty like spearmint, crisp
Liquor: Light amber
Flavor: Minty, bland green tea base with a hint of smokiness
Notes: I got this as a free sample part of a black Friday deal, I wasn’t too impressed. Sure, it was minty, but the green tea base was really lacking. I was hoping it would be a good blend because it did smell nice but if the green tea wasn’t mentioned, I probably wouldn’t think there was any tea in there.
This tastes very similar to the Zingiber Ginger Coconut tea I’ve had from Teavana, which sits at the top of my list of all-time favorite steeps. I’m sure it’s because of the rooibos and vanilla notes, which are especially noticeable while taking in this tea’s scent just before tilting in for a sip.
I got an ounce of this as part of the green tea sampler from Argo’s pre-Black Friday promotion. I used most of it to make tea for my family yesterday. They liked it well enough. But then they’ll drink just about anything minty I put in front of them, so I take their opinion with a grain of salt.
As for myself, I find it pretty mediocre. The mint is quite lovely and refreshing, but the base tea is meh. It just completely fades into the background in the first steep. The second steep is substantially better in that at least some dryness and woodsy notes come out to convince me that there even is any tea in here. The mint is very nice, but the base just cannot hold its own. Drinkable, but nothing I’m interested in seeking out again. Except maybe as a breath freshener – the mint really lingers!
I bought the box of sachets to keep at work during their recent scratch to win promotion. I unfortunately dropped my work steeping mug a few weeks ago and have been living off of bagged tea at work every since (sad face). Anyway, this was surprisingly yummy since I’m not the biggest fan of earl grey.
Once a bit of sweetener was added, it was basically like drinking a lightly flavored creamsicle, with just enough tea flavor to convince yourself it was actually a mug of tea with bergamot and cream flavor and not some sort of juice. I share an office with a fellow tea lover who absolutely loved this stuff and wanted to buy a ton for home use.
I’m thinking of buying the loose version for home since it is really yummy. I don’t even know what temperature the water is at work, but I got two steeps out of my tea bag.