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Recent Tasting Notes
From the sale recently! I loved the idea of this tea, so had to try it. Sadly, it isn’t as magical as I would hope from a Bluebird tea. I kind of expected the fruit to be pineapple and papaya (and not mango) from reading another tasting note from a Steepsterer. So the fruit flavor was really more like pineapple with hints of papaya. (I’m not sure if there is additional flavoring of mango that Bluebird adds or if it is just the papaya and pineapple chunks.) Though I do appreciate the papaya and pineapple, this blend probably shouldn’t be named ‘mango’. I also expected a vegetal, green bean type flavor to the tulsi, but the tulsi is so mild tasting that I can hardly taste it. There is also a hint of tanginess to the hibiscus… some sweetness from the sugar. I won’t say no to this on a hot summer evening (like now!), but sadly this blend was less than I imagined.
Steep #1 // 1 teaspoon //few minutes after boiling // few minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // few minute steep
I hope everyone has a lovely, enjoyable Memorial Day weekend!
While it’s the tiniest bit stronger and maltier than many I’ve tried, this is a pretty standard British breakfast blend. It’s solid, smooth and flavorful. It takes milk and sweetener well. It’s also quite nice with a squeeze of lemon. I’m always looking for nice breakfast blends to add to my collection for days when I’m tempted to have espresso/coffee, so I’m glad I added this to my Pick N Mix experience pack.
This tea is essentially black forest gateau minus the cake. To my taste buds, it’s more like a cordial cherry more than a black forest cake/gateau. There are so many berries in this blend. The added hibiscus gives the berries just a bit of the tart, sour cherry flavor that one would expect from a traditional black forest gateau. The chocolate is there but only just. I also find that I’m missing the cake element, especially since the vanilla isn’t really coming through very well in my cuppa. Cherry doesn’t rank very highly on my list of berries I enjoy in teas (especially black tea blends), so I’m not really wowed by this tea. It’s pleasant and has decent flavor, but it’s not a tea that I’ll be repurchasing.
Technically, this is my second time sipping this tea. The first time I didn’t get much flavor. I believe I let my water sit in the mug a bit too long before adding the leaves. Shame.
Today’s cuppa was lovely, sweet, and light but chock full of flavor. I’ve always been intrigued by the idea of a tea that tastes like cotton candy, but I’ve yet to meet one that actually delivers. Cotton candy (or candy/fairy floss, if you’re on the other side of the pond) was one of my favorite sweets as a child. This tea tastes like pink cotton candy dissolving on your tongue. The strawberry flavor is more tart than ripe, and I’m attributing that to the addition of hibiscus in this blend. I’m really enjoying this, much more than I thought I would. The other ingredients aren’t easy to distinguish, but the blend is mixed well. I think I’ll add it to my list of teas to cold-steep when my Hario filter-in bottle arrives.
This was from the Bluebird order! This one might not be for me though… Splenda, licorice, and lime leaves in an ice cream blend aren’t really what I’m looking for. And that is all I’m really getting from my teaspoon “scoop”. The flavor is mostly an odd melding of Splenda and licorice.which taste the same to me anyway. Hints of sarsparilla along with the light black tea. Bluebird still uses that light black tea (I think the Ceylon is the culprit.) I’m not sure what the lime leaves should be adding to the blend in the flavor, but it doesn’t seem too weird. The flavor is more like root beer than a root beer float. I wish I could say more about this blend or that I liked it better, but I kind of suspected I wouldn’t.
Steep #1 // 1 teaspoon for a full mug// few minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3-4 minute steep
Ok, so first off, this tea is adorable. The tiny mallows and sunflower strands? You’re killing me, Bluebird.
The dry and steep aromatics are distinctly those of the marshmallow bunny coated in chocolate. Yeah, you know the one, yes you. The popped rice, I think, does just as much of the heavy lifting in that regard as the mallows and cocoa shell bits.
On the tongue, the chocolate pulls riiiiight through, the mallow easing it onto the palate, and the overall taste has the acidity of the black balanced by the distinct flavor of the green. I actually didn’t notice until the first taste that this was a black-green blend.
All-in-all, this is the Cocoa Krispies of tea. Just add Saturday morning cartoons and you’re set. I wouldn’t likely be moved to purchase again, but I am really glad to get to sample 10 g, and the cuteness of it all has me won over for sure.
Flavors: Dark Chocolate, Marshmallow, Sweet, warm grass, Toasted Rice
This was a free sample with the Bluebird order, in a pyramid teabag. This was one I didn’t manage to try yet, so here goes. The scent is super spicy! There are notes of frosting in both the fragrance and flavor, I swear… a frosting you might see on a gingerbread cookie. I’m beginning to see some sort of sweet note in a tea blend whenever there are mallow blossoms, so that is my theory. The flavor is very spicy, just like a gingerbread cookie (almost too flavorful — I definitely wouldn’t steep more than one teaspoon at a time!) It’s such a satisfying late cold night cup. Spicy with a hint of sweetness. And I’m not a ginger fan AT ALL. The second steep is slightly less spicy than the first cup, though still very spicy, with more of that cookie icing peeking through! I’m surprised by this blend and how much I like it, though I really shouldn’t be. This is a Bluebird blend. And they are awesome. I coulda, shoulda bought some of this one! But that probably applies to all of the Bluebird blends.
Steep #1 // couple minutes after boiling // 2 1/2 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 4-5 minute steep
I’ve been sipping on a few cups of this (iced) all afternoon. I wish there was more lemon flavor. Not that I mind the flavors I’m getting, but it’s pretty much straight berry and hibiscus for me. It’s not even really noticeably strawberry-ish. Unsweetened it’s quite tart, but that mellows with a touch of sweetener (stevia, in my case). I think it’d be great blended with actual lemonade. I might try that this weekend. I like it but I don’t know if it’ll be a repurchase. There are other berry-hibiscus blends that I enjoy more (and are cheaper, easier to get my hands on).
The steep time is an absolute delight: all carnival and candy, reminiscent of fairgrounds in the early fall. Carmel apples are definitely what are coming through, like a bold candied cider.
The sweetness isn’t so much there as I expected from the tiny toffee pieces, and the flavor isn’t as present as the aromas would have you expecting. Still, I keep finding myself hovering over my mug just to take in the scent.
First brewing score: 65
Update: Brewed a travel mug this morning before setting off to lab and dressed it up with a little cream and sugar. Good God, this is brilliant for a milky tea. I remain interested in seeing if I can’t get these same flavors to pull through on their own with a longer brewing time (tried 5 minutes with a heaping tsp last time), but this really hit the spot this morning. I sipped it down in half the time it usually takes me to finish off my tea as I kept finding myself reaching for my mug over and over. Updating this to the upper 90’s because this experience was…magical.
Flavors: Candied Apple, Caramel, Kettle Corn, Toffee
Even though it’s summer now, this amalgamation of typically Autumn flavours was amazing. You have pumpkin, cinnamon, clove, ginger, molasses, brown sugar, and sweet potato notes that together just create the most decadent pumpkin pie flavour.
It’s definitely not the right season for this right now, but I’m going to have to remember this tea for the fall and winter – especially ‘cause DAVIDsTEA’s super popular Pumpkin Chai just never quite did it for me. This is DEFINITELY better.
Thank you Scheherazade!
Thank you Scheherazade for the sample!
I was really happy to get a chance to swap with you again.
Hoping you love the matcha.
This is my first pick from the goodies Scheherazade sent me; I asked for a random mix of stuff, and she certainly didn’t disappoint. Random is my new go to: I always end up with things I’d never have picked for myself and quite often I end up pleasantly surprised. That’s the case with this one, for sure: I’d have avoided it ’cause of the “spice” element and the fact pumpkin teas so rarely ever taste like actual pumpkin.
This is great though: first and foremost I very clearly taste the flavour of real pumpkin and that definitely makes this better than most “pumpkin” teas which typically drown out any actual pumpkin in the blend with pumpkin spices. And on that note, while I totally taste the cinnamon and ginger in the blend they’re subdued in comparison to the flavour of the pumpkin and the cinnamon really just reinforces the pie element of the tea because it makes me think of pie crust. I don’t find them intrusive or drowning at all which is a big relief. I don’t even mind the ginger.
As well, there’s a sweetness to the tea which is appropriate to the notion of pie filling. I’d never add sweetener to this myself as that’d be over the top, but what’s here seems almost natural while capturing that confectionery element. Of course, it isn’t natural: it’s definitely from the candy bats in the blend – but that’s fine. It’s not artificial tasting. It’s like brown sugar and vanilla? Without actually being brown sugar or vanilla though.
Final observation/comment: While I normally don’t lean towards Ceylon I think that it’s appropriate as a base here because it does have such a mild/soft flavour compared to a lot of black teas and that suits blends well, especially blends that focus on flavours as delicate as pumpkin. Squash in general doesn’t pack a lot of “oomph” as a flavour. Not the same way other fruits/veggies do.
Really, really impressed and surprised with this blend! Only
small criticism is that I wish there was a stronger taste of the clove.
Flavors: Brown Sugar, Cinnamon, Ginger, Pumpkin, Sweet, Sweet Potatoes, Vanilla
Another tea from my Pick N Mix experience pack.
I had to do a double-take of the packaging when I sipped this hot and straight this morning. There’s banana in this? I didn’t taste much other than black tea with the slightest hint of vanilla. I added a bit of sweetener and a good splash of (almond) milk before taking a second sip.
Truthfully, given the name I was expecting a more in-your-face banana tea. That said, the tea did not disappoint. The banana flavor is subtle but delicious. I sort of wish there were more bananas in my bag because the flavor they’re giving me is more natural than artificial. I definitely don’t get the banana candy flavor (think Runts) that seems to be so prevalent in the banana teas I’ve tried. I’m so used to bananas being paired with chocolate in teas that I assumed chocolate was in this blend as well. I’m really glad it’s not. It would’ve overpowered the lovely, delicate banana flavor. It’s lovely as a breakfast tea and would probably make a killer latte. I need to start making a list of teas to latte (latte is a verb, right?) on weekends.
I might repurchase this when I’ve used up some of the other banana teas hanging out in my collection.
Flavors: banana, Creamy
I bought a 150g tin of this because I was hopeful that it’d be a suitable replacement for the long discontinued Fantasy Island. I must say that this is everything I was hoping for and more. In fact, I think I prefer this blend to DT’s Fantasy Island. That’s saying a lot because Fantasy Island is one of my all-time favorite teas from DT.
I didn’t think I’d be crazy about the raspberry leaf in this blend but, thankfully, it doesn’t bother me. The black tea base is really nice and smooth. It reminds me of the 52 Teas black tea base(s). If anything I wish there was a bit more coconut flavor, but the berry/raspberry flavor is just so delightful. I don’t know that I distinguish any cake notes, but that’s fine by me. It’s quite decadent and jammy regardless. I added a few drops of stevia to sweeten it a bit. It also takes (almond) milk well.
Cococabana Coola + Main Squeeze (1:1), lightly sweetened with stevia, iced.
I just finished off my 20g sampler bag of Cococabana Coola this morning. Truthfully, it’s like a tropical vacation in my mouth. Of the fruity herbal blends I’ve tried from Bluebird Tea Co, this one is my favorite. It’s really flavorful so it masks the flavor of Main Squeeze, which I don’t mind. I’m drinking Main Squeeze for the stimulant boost more than the flavor. I’m holding out until the summer collection is released, but I’ll definitely be adding a tin of this to my next Bluebird order.
This is another yummy blend that I did not like hot (as expected) but really enjoy over ice. It’s fruity, very fruity – mango, pineapple, passion fruit, orange and papaya. It’s like a lovely tropical cocktail without the alcohol. I love hibiscus, but I don’t find that it’s so overwhelming that it overpowers the fruitiness. It does have a very tart aftertaste, but I don’t mind. I will be repurchasing this one to sip on this summer. All that’s missing is the rum!
This tea. This tea caught me off guard. I expected to like it (chocolate teas seem to be my thing lately), but I didn’t think I’d like it THIS much. Truthfully, I had no idea what easter egg nests were until I googled the phrase. Apparently easter egg nests in the US typically contain coconut. Easter egg nests in the UK seem to contain cereal, usually popped rice. This tea tastes like a chocolate covered Rice Krispie treat. It’s really quite delicious – great chocolate flavor, slightly sweet, and a lovely toasted rice note. I sampled it hot and straight, but I imagine it would be even tastier with milk and sweetener. I’ll be stocking up on this as well.
Flavors: Chocolate, Marshmallow, Sweet, Toasted Rice
I cold-steeped this for two days (forgot it was in the fridge!) to see if I’d like it just as much cold-steeped as I do iced. I think I like it more. Score! Cold-steeping is my new favorite way to steep herbal teas because I can use half the tea and still get all the awesome flavor. Nevermind the fact that they’re still tasty even if they’ve been in the fridge for over 24 hours. Yum! This is delicious. I wanted to try it a few different ways to be sure that I wanted to spend the money to stock up on it (another LE tea! grrrr!). It looks like I’ll have to bite the bullet after all.
This was one of the first teas I tried in my order, as I realized that the spring collection would soon be gone. As suspected. I was not a fan of this blend hot, but it’s lovely over ice. The dry leaf smells like a candy shop – sort of like Starburst and gummi bears combined. I’m not a Brit and I’ve never had a chance to try these fruit salad chews, but to me the tea tastes like raspberry and pineapple gummi bears (Haribo) in one bite. That’s the only way I can describe it. I will be stocking up on this one. I think it’ll be very refreshing in the summer.
Flavors: Candy, Fruity, Pineapple, Raspberry