Cuppa'T Specialty Teas
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Recent Tasting Notes
Made a timolino full of this! I’ve been dying to try it since buying it earlier in the week; dry it smells like sweet, flaky glazed pastry and fresh, juicy apples with the sweet nuttiness of pistachio and a heavily present creaminess as well.
My steeping parameters were 2 tsp. of leaf in my 12 oz. timolino steeped for about five minutes, possibly a little less than that. Steeped the smell was very rich, buttery apple pastry; tons of creaminess in the smell. A little nutty pistachio.
Taste wise and hot, there was a light metallic “tang” and a slightly woody rooibos taste present completely throughout the sip. The apple is lighter than you would expect, and just a little bit taste. It reminds me of green apples. There’s a subtle creaminess present throughout the sip, and a buttery semi-pastry like taste. Just a little pistachio taste – though it is a distinct pistachio taste, and not just a generic nuttiness. I was expecting this to be a little more flavourful; despite what I’ve described this does feel a little muted, like it’s not living up the the full flavour potential it could have.
I also left a cup to sit for a while, which is now stone cold. This way, there’s a much more intense pistachio and cream flavour, with the same light, buttery pastry/apple taste. Medium rooibos flavour with a little bit less of that metallic tang.
So overall, pretty good but I feel like maybe I could have got more out of this taste wise. Next cup I may increased the leaf and see if that brings more flavour out.
I was really excited to try this one, so it’s the first out of the three new Cuppa’T blends I picked up that I’ve chosen to make. Visually, this blend is really pretty; it has all sorts of different sizes and colours and shapes of stuff in it – and I think that’s what drew me to it because, while I’m not anti-pumpkin, pumpkin is a flavour that I’m relatively neutral towards. So, based mostly on the visual I picked some up.
I’d forgotten what the ingredients in this one were by the time I got home and this is a newer blend not listed on the Cuppa’T website so I messaged the store owner Jule for an ingredients list and she was very quick in responding to me with the ingredients list! I am definitely impressed by that.
My parameters for this first cup were 1 1/2 tsp. of leaf steeped in an 8 oz. mug full of boiling water for 6 minutes. I was aiming for closer to four, but time got away on me. Dry, this smells like an Autumn tea; it’s subtly fruity with a gentle pumpkin/apple smell and nice warming spices like cinnamon and steeped the smell gives off strong apple and mandarin notes with mild pumpkin and cinnamon notes. It sort of smells like a cider, to be honest.
Taste wise; the first thing I notice is the apple/mandarin with mingling notes of hibiscus (gentle though; not overpowering), pumpkin, and maybe mango. This gives way to a more 50/50 apple and pumpkin taste with cinnamon and fleeting coriander notes to round it out. The rooibos base is barely present at all. More than anything else this makes me think of some kind of gently spiced Apple/Pumpkin cider, which is lovely. The aftertaste I get is primarily cinnamon/pumpkin. This would probably be phenomenal as a fall tea.
I think with a shorter steep time you could probably eliminate the hibiscus/mango in the forefront and get more of the apple/pumpkin, and perhaps a stronger taste of the rooibos base. I’d also love to try this with milk.
I’m really enjoying this – though admittedly it’s a fair bit different than what I was expecting, though I’m not even sure if I could tell you what I was expecting. I think I just had a super generalized idea of what this might be.
EDIT: Slightly more hibiscus taste as it cooled.
Received this from Lala! She was super thoughtful and sent out Christmas cards to people with tea samples. The tea comes from a local store that I’ve never been to, but plan on going to when I’m up in the city the next few weeks. I really wanted to try this one out prior to leaving, to now if it’s something I’ll want to stock up on while I have the opportunity to do so.
Dry, the leaf smells exactly like what I had wanted from Butiki’s Almond Indulgence; it’s sweet and candy like, with clear almond smell – but the hard to describe almost fruity sweetness of almond extract or almond flavouring in baking! So good!
For my preparation I went with a just slightly heaping tsp. of leaf in 10 oz. of boiling water, steeped for four minutes. I just ordered pizza, so I’m drinking this while eating cheese and pineapple pizza and two bite brownies (I felt too sick to actually cook anything, but was starving). It’s a weird pairing, honestly.
The tea tastes very good; very cakey or like pastry like which really ties in to the “sweet almond baking” thing that the dry leaf reminds me of. It’s very almond with a smooth black base and a very light hint of cinnamon. So, so tasty! Yeah, I’m totally going to be picking up more of this!
Thank you Lala!
So I bought this to blend with another tea. But I thought I better try it by itself before its all gone and blended away. This one smells sweet, not too smokey. There is a light sweetness to the tea, also a little but of malt. Hardley any smoke, but there is some there. The liquor is thick but the flavour is very light and basic. I feel like there is some vegetal flavour to this like it is almost a black tea but not quite. Just the slightest metallic tinge in the aftertaste. No astringency or bitterness. I love keemun. I am kind of sad I blended it all away, but I know where I can get more :)
So on a sidenote, I have found my favorite tea blend. It is this tea, mixed half and half with lapsang (also from Cuppa T, although it really doesn’t matter where the tea is from) mixed with two fresh slices of ginger, and a slice of naval orange. Brewed for 1 minute at just less than boiling. The orange and ginger stay in the cup. It is delicious. It is like Sunday breakfast, when you stuff your face with bacon, pancakes, milk and orange juice. And then lay on the couch the rest of the day. So good.
I re-stocked this tea before I even took it out of my “cupboard”! I guess I forgot when I sipped down my last bit awhile ago. Oh well, I will likely always have this in my cupboard anyway.
It tastes a little less caramel than usual today for some reason. But still so comforting on a cold winters day.
For a while, I was obsessed with flowering teas. I just thought it was so neat how the balls would open up in beautiful pieces of art. But what I found after a while is I dislike how most of them tasted. I totally understand it is super hard to artfully sow tea leaves together so they bloom perfectly, I am sure there are only a few kinds of tea leaves that will work for this, but I just don’t like the taste of most of them.
This one is super jasmine smelling. Very parfumey, not parfume in the sense of good smelling, but parfume as in body spray. There is a definite chemical type smell to this one.
The taste is not as bad as I had anticipated from the parfumey smell. It is definitely jasmine. There is a chemical parfume taste but it is very light. There are some really sweet notes that remind me of berries, maybe like cherries. There are also some peppery notes. The jasmine is mellowing quite a bit as it cools, and the sweet berry notes are becoming stronger.
I have to take back what I said above, this one is tasting not too bad, not a favourite or cupboard staple, but it is drinkable.
Mad Tea Experiment Take 2.
So now that I have an orange and a few really good ideas (stolen from others, or course), I blended half and half lapsang with keemun. I added 4 small pink rose buds, 3 slices fresh ginger and a slice of navel orange. The orange and ginger stayed in the cup the whole time. WOW!! The keemun definitely toned down the lapsang. There is still some smoke but not overpowering. The keemun was not too smokey itself so I think that helped. I think with the experiment yesterday, I used Darjeeling but it was not strong enough to tone down the lapsang too much. The orange and ginger provide some spice, pepper, but also some sweetness. There is a very light citrous flavor. I actually want to try this with blackberries now.
This is totally reminding me of a rich, dark Chilean malbec. I love it.
Mad Tea Experiment #3.
I made this again, as above, but this time I added an actual French Vanilla Bean. Well it was actually half of a dried bean, I cut it open the long way and added it to the tea. I was ok. I thought it gave the tea a more alcoholic type taste. There was a creamy vanilla taste but it didn’t work so awesome with the ginger and the orange. I then added some maple syrup. The maple syrup definitely added some sweetness and was delicious as always with the lapsang. But I think for me I prefer this with my Experiment 2 recipe.
On another note, my maple syrup bottle used a cork as a stopper. When I went to take the cork out, it broke in half, leaving most of the cork in the neck of the glass bottle. So I had to dig it out with a knife. Now I have an open bottle of maple syrup. Guess that is what I am eating for the rest of the weekend :)
Mad Tea Experiment. YES. Its been a while.
So a few days ago (I think), someone made a comment or a tasting note (I think) about adding ginger to lapsang. It was Sil or Terri (I think). Sometimes things just all meld together.
Anyway I had this bright idea, that I had to do some experiments. I took this lapsang and brewed it mixed half and half with a Darjeeling of unknown origin. (I think it was from bulk barn – I think. Ha ha.) Then I added a slice of ginger. I had also wanted to add an orange slice but I could not for the life of me find a single orange for sale. Let me clarify, I could buy a 4 or 8 lbs bag of oranges, but I really just wanted one. And a real orange, not a mandarin. Anyway, all of the bagged oranges were gross looking, bruised with rotten spots. So I just went with the ginger.
The half and half mix of tea, toned down the smoke a bit. I am not a huge Darjeeling fan but I thought it would work for the experiment. I didn’t want to use of the prized assam (also from bulk barn – I think) in case it didn’t turn out. I didn’t taste the Darjeeling much. The lapsang was quite strong but not as strong as if drank straight. I just used one slice of ginger because I didn’t want it to get too spicey. I hardly tasted the ginger at all. It did add a bit of sweetness to the tea, but not that little spice that I would have liked.
So I now have an orange, an excellent looking orange to be exact. So I have some ideas for the next experiment. Stay tuned…I think :P
Thank you Lala for this sample. From my Secret Pumpkin package. :)
The cinnamon is strong in this blend but there is something spicier lurking behind it, like pepper or chilli…it tickles my nose as I sniff.
Flavour wise I had to double check I had the correct tea…I can taste cocoa mixed with cinnamon and spices. No pumpkin though which is a shame. The black tea is strong compared to the rest of the blend and at best it tastes like a black tea with mild spices.
Some sweetener lessens the black teas thickness but there is even less spice if none now to speak of.
This tea is just not for me, it’s disappointing but at least drinkable.
I’m just now getting back into my Secret Pumpkin/Turkey swaps! This one was from my Secret Pumpkin Lala. If I hadn’t known this was flavored rooibos, I might not have known, since it was mostly just rooibos. Thankfully, I like plain rooibos. Very occasionally I would get a hint of sweet almond in my sip, but it wasn’t throughout the sip, it was more like “ohh, ahh, nice, now back to rooibos”. This isn’t something I’d stock in my cupboard ‘cause really, if I wanted rooibos, I’d just buy rooibos, but I’ll definitely use up the sample.
Also, how many times can I include rooibos in a review? Many many times.
sample sidpdown! and i’m back down to 140 teas. 15 days ish to get through 35 more haha.
I received this in the mail the other day from Lala with a really thoughtful, surprise holiday card. :) It was a wonderful surprise to get in the mail! Thank you a bunch lala. This tea smells a lot like a combination of brioche and S&V’s sweet almond tea (i think it is…) that i enjoy.
I brewed this up this evening since i was in a bit of a holiday, festive mood after my afternoon with raritea. This has a great almond taste to it along with a bit of cinnamon. It’s not cinnamon heavy though – rather the cinnamon just enhances the almond flavour. over all a pretty tasty tea, though it’s a little thin? for my tastes. While drinking it, i kept wishing for it to have a bit more of a full feeling to it. however, still a delicious cup! thanks Lala
I received a lovely holiday card tea card in the mail yesterday from Lala. Thank you so much for the warm, generous, thoughtful gesture. I am truly touched by your kindness. In the card was a sample of this tea.
This is a nice light almond cinnamon tea. In Lala’s tasting note she suggests cake, I’m getting bakery, but I think more strudel or danish – yep almond, cinnamon “coffee cake” danish.
I’m not sure I would have bought this for myself, but am really happy to have gotten this sample. Thank you!!!
Thank you Lala for this sample. Received from my Secret Pumpkin package.
This blend smells very spicy and nutty. The coriander adds a herbal element to the spice, it is like a chai with a difference.
The orange comes through nicely in the flavour being sweet and creamy in the first few sips which is followed by a dry nutty and spicy chai like flavour. The pistachio is rather heavy for for a non pistachio fan like myself but it’s forgiving as by the time you think ‘yuck pistachio’ the spices come in and you end up thinking ‘yum spices’.
The orange actually becomes stronger as it cools which is a large plus for me as I love orange.
I like it, sort of orange tea meets a nutty chai tea.
A little taste of paradise this morning. I wish I was on a beach somewhere right now instead of here in the cold and snow! Maybe in the new year I will go on a trip.
I still really enjoy this. The papaya is coming out a little more today. I guess I got some bits in my tsp! The black base can get really astringent if brewed for too long though, so you kind of have to watch the time on this one.
Boiling water cooled off a little at 3 minutes.
Thank you Lala for this generous sample!
This tea is not as flavourful as I would of hoped as Lala mentioned. I still enjoy it though, the subtle black base and the subtle hints of orange. Not a tea I would choose if I wanted a big kick in the morning. It seems like an afternoon tea
Boiling water cooled down a bit for 4 minutes