Golden Moon Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

88

I’m still sipping my way through Dexter3657 black tea pack. Thanks again for your infinite generosity :-)

I’m surprised to be the first to review this excellent tea.

Yunnan black. So good. Beautiful golden colour, its aroma makes me drool even though I just ate a full plate of penne primavera with lots of extra parmesan cheese. (Burp!)

This tea feels like a sunday dessert. Peach and chocolate syrup, honey drizzle with nutty crumbles on top! Where is the cherry, you ask? In the bowl I’m about to have right after, fresh Bing cherries, yum! (Yep, this Fairy was a hungry one tonight!)

Another hit this tea, thanks again Dexter!

Flavors: Chocolate, Honey, Nuts, Peach

Dexter

Dinner sounds great, happy that you liked this tea. This is one that I should be drinking. :))

sherapop

I’m obsessed with Golden Monkey. My supply came from Tazo, and it is very, very good.

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83

Another sample from Sil! (238)

I’m drinking this one while I catch up on my backlogging from earlier. It’s a really nice oolong – it’s darker instead of greener, which is what I like, and it has a bit of caramel sweetness to it that I am a fan of. I could see myself drinking this one fairly frequently.

Sil

glad you liked it

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80

I think this is my favourite coconut tea so far! It’s just enough coconut to make me happy, and still let me enjoy the base. Beautifully light floral notes and a pleasant texture make it even more appealing. Thank you so much to the witty mj1851 :D

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99

As I sit here lovingly sipping my third cup of this today I wonder why I originally rated this a 92. Changed the rating to a 99 because this is now my favorite tea. I drink 2-3 cups every morning and love it so much that when I traveled to my sister’s this past wknd it is the one I had to take with me. The caramel/molasses flavors in this tea make it wonderfully sweet all on it’s own. Adding just a touch of milk to it gives it a creaminess that makes it just perfect.

Two of my nieces turned out to be big tea drinkers-something I never knew before I really got “into” tea because it had really never come up. One of them totally fell for this tea and is now interested in loose leaf teas as well. The other….well, she’s still on her Bigelow bag tea that she has been downing as a pregnancy craving…lol.

In any case, I will NEVER be without this tea unless they stop selling it. It is so good I can’t even “hoard” it and “save it for special occasions” like I usually do when I find a really good one I love. I am addicted to it so if I run out I’ll just get more. LOL.

Flavors: Caramel, Molasses

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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To continue my nightly tea binge, I chose this little dude, brought to me by the charismatic mj1851. Thanks gurl! The dry leaf smells strongly of toffee and caramel, and I’m really looking forward to having this in my mouth right now. The water may have been a bit too hot when I steeped it, on a count of me being lazy and not wanting to check the temperature of the water, so I don’t know…I may have screwed it up. Let’s try it, yeah?

I just splashed a whole bunch of very hot water on my eyeball, in my eager attempt to take a sip. Who needs two eyeballs anyway? So now about the tea: slight butter taste. Noticeable, but I’ve definitely had more buttery. Pleasant. There’s also a slight vegetal je-ne-sais-quoi and the caramel is there, but it should be there more. Caramel, why are you hiding in the background? Come here! I just want to talk to you! Come!

Nope, he doesn’t want to come out. Maybe if I let it cool down a bit. Let me just put my freakin’ safety goggles on before I take another sip lol. Well, I can now detect a vanilla-like flavour. Not exactly vanilla, but something like it. Maybe…sugar? But the thing is this tea is not sweet at all. It tastes like sugar, but doesn’t taste sweet. Am I talking crazy again? Probably. Now where do you buy an eye patch? Preferably one with ruffles, fringe or print, because an eye patch is no excuse for a fashion faux-pas.

God. What am I saying.

mj

I pretty much just died laughing at this tasting note

mj

Maybe try with sugar? I usually add sugar

Virginia

But it’s SUGAR caramel oolong. What’s the point of having to add sugar to SUGAR caramel oolong? Shouldn’t it already be sweet? Tsssss….You just don’t get it mj. Here I am trying to make this tasting note a piece of literary genius, pouring blood sweat and tears into tasting this tea to tell the world a story. A story of tea. There’s no room for sugar in this story. It’s a story of pain, and perseverance, to try to find the beauty in a natural product. And here you are, laughing away. Well LAUGH! In the end the world will know that you resort to ephemeral solutions to an ongoing problem while I put in the effort that will ultimately lead to the best tea story ever told.

Virginia

Yeah I’ll add sugar next time.

Virginia

You know what’s funny? The whole time I was typing that paragraph, everytime I wanted to type “add” I mistakenly typed “ass”. Will I ever stop finding that hillarious? xD

mj

I do see the irony in adding…sugar….to sugar caramel oolong. But I am in a jovial mood (does this make me sound like a Victorian era gentleman) . So, starting from “A story of tea” I’m reading this comment in my head in that movie announcer voice that is used in trailers. And then I wonder. What is the point of having to ass sugar? LMAO

TheTeaFairy

Hilarious. (Make sure the eye patch is pink. Pink is always good around the face. Or in your case, in the face.)

Virginia

William Gladstone: I love that you know I’m joking as opposed to others in the internets that think I’m actually this overpassionate about petty things. I would agree that an ass can change everything. Movie announcer kicks in or lead to your demise.

Fairy: I was thinking maybe more lace with some ribbon? You know, keep it sexy.

TheTeaFairy

Ok, sexy is important. How bout black lace and pink ribbon?

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72
drank Keemun by Golden Moon Tea
439 tasting notes

This is another sample from Dexter3657.

I love a good Keemun, but my liking is proportional to their level of smoke. A few exceptions aside, I’m not a fan of smoke in tea.

This Keemun falls in the middle for me. It’s moderately smoky, with nice fruity and floral undertones, though I can’t really pinpoint the peach and lilac mentioned in its description.

The truth is, the smoke ruins it a bit for me, so I decided to try my second cup “Sil’s Style”, with maple syrup you have guessed. I very rarely add anything to my tea, but maple syrup will sometimes join the party and help a little with difficult ones.

Does’t really help in this case I’m afraid, the smoke’s sharpness still cuts trough.

Oh well, I’m still very happy I got the chance to try it, it helps me narrow down excacly the type of Keemun I prefer.

Thank you Dexter3657 for sharing with me :-)

looseTman

TheTeaFairy, Thanks for being the first to review this Keemun. I was intrigued when it was recently on sale, especially since Golden Moon teas are typically well regarded on Steepster.

TheTeaFairy

Well I guess I’m not a “real” keemun fan, since I have a hard time with smoke. so please don’t let this review influence you, it’s a very good tea, just doesn’t suit my own personal tastes:-) I’m pretty much sticking to Teavivre when it comes to Keemun, can’t seem to find any I like as much.

Dexter

I’m going to take this to work with me tomorrow and see how it is. I don’t normally get the “smoke” – it’s kind of like the mysterious leather.
Fairy do I have more Keemun? I probably do… would you like to try others that I might have?

looseTman

Thanks for being the pioneer for this Keemun. Prior to today there wasn’t any readily available Steepster info on this one. Anyone who likes Teavivre Keemun certainly has good taste! ;-)

TheTeaFairy

Haha! Dexter, so you are smoke and leather immune, so funny! Well if you can’t find the smoke in a Lapsang, then don’t look for it in this one, I don’t think you’ll never find it!

(No.more.tea.for.me…But Thank you :-))

TheTeaFairy

Thanks looseTman :-)

Dexter

I can find smoke in Lapsang – like smoked lapsang, or some heavily roasted oolongs, but not just in keemun…….

TheTeaFairy

Ha! Sorry, that makes more sense :-)

Dexter

This is smokey – I don’t think it’s CRAZY smokey but there is some. It seems to lessen as the tea cools. At least that’s my impression this morning…

TheTeaFairy

So you got the smoke this time? Smoke in keemun is different than smoke found in Sheng don’t you find? That, I can appreciate. But Keemun feels heavier and the smoke against that rich taste is just too much for me.

Dexter

There is smoke in sheng?
I don’t find this offensive, but then I don’t mind Lapsang (unless it’s really piney smoke). I need to look through my stash for more Keemun – see how the others compare to this. I just don’t recall ever getting smoke like this…

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drank Kashmiri Chai by Golden Moon Tea
641 tasting notes

I’m liking this tea much better than the last time I had it! I boiled sweetened vanilla soy milk and steeped the tea in it for about five minutes while stirring. I strained it into a jar and let it cool in the fridge overnight. Today, it is quite delicious! It seems to have a good mix of cinnamon/cardamon/clove going on in it. It isn’t quite as heavy or earthy as I would like and I prefer a little more of a pepper spicy bite, but it is still pretty good. I might try adding a few peppers in it next time and see if that fills my chai desires.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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drank Kashmiri Chai by Golden Moon Tea
641 tasting notes

I was super excited to find another tea that was called Kashmiri Chai. So excited that I overlooked the fact that this is black and my long lost love that I’m trying to replace, Zhi Tea’s Kashmiri Chai, was green. Got to tone down the blinding tea enthusiasm.

This tea is nice. It isn’t impressing me excessively tho. Smells nice and cinnamon like. When I sip, I taste the cardamon, clove and cinnamon, but it in’t really spicy and I do like spice. Zhi’s version had a ton of cardamon, but it is hard to pick out in this one. The black base seems okay, kinda lingers in the back. I added cream and sugar, but I might try boiling it on the stove in proper chai fashion.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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Had this last night, but the little stash in my metal tin is losing some flavour. Luckily, I have another stash saved in a heat-sealed pouch fresh from the vendor.

I think I’ll coldbrew the remainder in the metal container. I hope I like it that way!

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I really wanted some coconut tonight, so this came to the rescue… but I didn’t taste much coconut at all! It’s been sitting in an airtight metal container for over a year, so I expected some loss of flavour, but not this much.

I have an unopened 1-oz pouch of this beyond the sample tea in the metal container. I’ll have to finish off the sample soon.

On an unpleasant note, I noticed that drinking this tea made my stomach upset – just this feeling of gnawing hunger even though I know I’ve eaten. I’ve had this stomach problem on and off for about a year and a half. No idea what triggers this fake hunger feeling (I went to a gastro specialist and had them examine the interior of my stomach with a scope camera, but nothing unusual turned up). I really hope this tea doesn’t trigger my stomach pain, because I’d never finish it if that were the case.

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Backlog from yesterday

I decided to revisit this tea after having Golden Moon’s Sugar Caramel Oolong earlier yesterday. I like this one more. The leaf is definitely green and floral, but the coconut blends with that in a wonderful way.

I would definitely consider restocking this once I run out. However, since I have it so rarely that probably won’t be for a while!

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I finally tried this one today! I’m not normally in an oolong mood, but this one was quite nice, and the leaf smells heavenly.

I steeped this using a gaiwan and got about 7-8 steeps out of it, though only the first 3-4 had a lot of flavour. Later on, some astringency (that “curly” oolong taste I keep noticing) came through. My mouth also tingled a bit. The leaf expanded so much in the gaiwan!

Next time I’ll try it western style and see how it compares.

Preparation
0 OZ / 0 ML

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45
drank Snow Sprout by Golden Moon Tea
1777 tasting notes

I wanted to try this one from Rachel’s sale a while back when I saw Dinosara was selling some… to make sure I didn’t love it and needed to buy it. :D It’s difficult to taste anything in this first cup. But it seems like a white tea to me. The leaves are long and spikey, almost like another tea I had the other day I hadn’t seen before. I love the name! I dropped the sample pouch on the floor and lost a few of the leaves, but it was right before I vacuumed anyway. I hate dropping tea on the floor, but it was a one cup sample anyway… germs gone and not back in my tea collection! The second steep wasn’t much better than the first. Kind of boring, this one.

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drank Sinharaja by Golden Moon Tea
430 tasting notes

This tea brews up to a nice classic copper orange colour and smells of plum tinted with cherry, cinnamon, and malt with brown sugar. There is a hint of sweet potato as it cools and the spice becomes slightly floral reminding me of clover nectar.

It taste very smooth with sweet sugary fruit notes up front, strong ripe plum is evident sprinkled with brown sugar, followed by a soft floral note that is slightly powdery and finished with malt. The texture is almost creamy. Hidden in the malt is a bit of cocoa and sweet potato. There is a slight grain note like barley present. The flavour is rich but the tea seems to be too thin to add milk to. The aftertaste is a mix of bitter malt and sugared fruit. A very nice mix of fruit, spice, floral notes and malt.

Thank you so much Dexter3657 for sharing this sample for me. It is quite a nice Ceylon.

Preparation
4 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
gmathis

I remember thinking how wonderfully unusual this one was.

yyz

It is quite nice in a muted, elegant way, I quite like it as well:)

TheTeaFairy

What a nice review, you make this sound so yummy!

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90

Well, I have pulled a muscle in my shoulder, apparently I am not enough of an amazon to move furniture around by myself, but that is really no surprise. I did, however, get my craft area and tea lair redone meaning I have a little more room. I still need to find a small table to place my computer on, giving my desk an L shape, I need more room for folding paper!

Today’s tea is Vanilla Mint from Golden Moon Teas. A blend of Gunpowder Green Tea, Mint Leaves, Black Tea, Mint Oil, Vanilla Extract, and Vanilla Bean Pod Slices. I was quite intrigued by this tea, the ingredients reminded me of Moroccan Mint tea but with a vanilla twist, and I do really enjoy those flavors together. The aroma is predominantly minty with a strong presence of sweet vanilla. Underneath these two dominating smells we have a gentle vegetal note, a subtle smokiness, and a tiny hint of malt.

The now quite soggy leaves are still very minty, but now they have more vegetal notes. There is an underlying sweetness and a faint smokiness. The liquid is all about the creamy vanilla, it is sweet and a little decadent. There is also a minty presence but it is more of a background coolness (it is even wearing shades and a popped collar) and a hint of smokiness. It is like a creamy mint milkshake with a hint of campfire, actually that sounds like a good camping idea.

Oh man, this tea has the best cooling effect, I love how mint teas warm you up and cool you down in the same sip. Combine that with sweet vanilla, slightly oak wood black tea, and a nice vegetal zing, and you have for a really interesting tea. The mint does not overpower, which is great, I notice that a lot of tea blends with mint make the mistake of having it be too minty…it kinda bullies the other flavors and you don’t notice them. My favorite part of this tea is the smoky finish, it adds a richness to an otherwise light tea. I decided to chill this tea and found that chilling it makes it a lot mintier, I think I prefer this tea hot, but I honesty do with most teas.

For photos and blog: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2014/05/golden-moon-teas-vanilla-mint-tea-review.html

Stephanie

Hope your shoulder feels better quickly!

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

Thanks! It already feels better…the power of a good soak in a hot bath :)

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65

This sample came to me from Dexter3657. When I brewed it up , I could smell something I just couldn’t place. For taste I picked up the light white tea but just couldn’t detect the melon. I don’t know why. There are plenty of reviews here that say they can taste the melon. Then I read a review that said it tasted like liquid bread. Yes, that’s the taste I picked up – like a baker’s yeast.

Just not my cup of tea but thanks Dexter3657 for the sample. I’m glad I got to try it.

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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75
drank Coconut Pouchong by Golden Moon Tea
223 tasting notes

I’m gonna keep this quick, as fruit flavored teas are not my thing:
Incredibly delicious coconut smell. The taste pairs wonderfully with the light floral of the pouchong. It’s really surprsing how well the two pair as I was sort of expecting the very strong coconut smell to overpower the tea. It leaves a really dry feeling in the mouth and throat after 5 infusions or so gongfu style. Otherwise, really nice light flavor with a generous amount of coconut that surprisingly seems like just the right amount.

Flavors: Coconut, Flowers

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 45 sec 3 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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69

Since I had had a sample sachet of this for a while now, I decided to have it this morning. It wasn’t particularly remarkable even though I was hoping there was some Chinese tea blended in… as it seemed a bit sweet.

Unfortunately, now I read that it is just Ceylon tea, the one kind which instigates zero interest in me (although I must admit that it is pretty awesome iced), which would explain its almost mediocrity to me. Almost mediocrity, because I did detect some pleasant floral notes. I only wish they were a little stronger.

Also, the tea didn’t resteep very well. The second steep was really mild and weak even though I added 1,5 minute to the original steeping time. Not a bad tea, not anything that was a challenge to finish, but nothing particularly flavorful or sophisticated either.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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84
drank Vanilla Mint by Golden Moon Tea
770 tasting notes

Today’s the day I start my new freelance gig!

I decided to drink this because I really need to stop hoarding teas that I have a decent amount of, like this one.

The first time I tried it, I thought the blend of vanilla and mint was quite smooth. This time, I’m getting less vanilla and more mint, probably because I oversteeped it. As a result, I’m tasting that harsh, chemical taste I often associate with peppermint. So, a word to the wise: don’t oversteep this (4 minutes is enough). It could probably also use some sweetener to mellow things out.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 24 OZ / 709 ML
Veronica

Congratulations and good luck!

caile

Good luck!

mj

Good luck!

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84
drank Vanilla Mint by Golden Moon Tea
770 tasting notes

At first glance, this tea is an unusual mix of flavours: green tea, black tea, mint, and vanilla. I’ve found that I’m not a huge fan of mixing green tea and vanilla together, but I don’t mind black tea and vanilla, and mint goes well with both kinds. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was prepared for something discordant when I tasted it, and that expectation was reinforced when smelling the dry leaf – smelling vanilla and mint together is just a weird combination for me.

But what’s this? When brewed up, it’s surprisingly smooth, and well blended! The flavours are distinct, but they don’t fight against each other, instead combining to form something even better. It tastes good both straight and with a little bit of sweetener added, though I prefer the sweetened version. Even better, despite the boiling steep temperature, the green tea didn’t become astringent.

So, this was a tea I expected to be weird and jangly and disorganized, only to have it defy my expectations and become a smooth, delicious cup. So what fictional character did this tea remind me of? You’ll have to take a look here to find out: http://christinavasilevski.com/2014/05/sunday-tea-books-vanilla-mint/

Flavors: Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Sami Kelsh

This does rather sound quite magical. Yummy!

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94

Sipdown of a very old sample, not even sure who sent it to me at this point!

I enjoyed this though, it reminded me a lot of Davidstea’s version of coconut oolong (the pre-lemongrass edition). Which I love and hoarded.

This type of tea is everything I want when I crave a coconut tea, that is to say it’s creamy, buttery and super coconutty! The buttery base definitely lends itself well to this sort of flavoring.

Since it’s so similar to the DT old version which I still have plenty of, I wouldn’t need to own this one, but I enjoyed it just as much. Thanks to whoever sent it long ago in my pre baby days!

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80

Sipdown and side by side comparison! Note: this is cross-posted with http://steepster.com/cvasilevski/posts/302699

A few months ago Golden Moon switched almost all of their blends so that they were organic. This was one of the affected ones, and I was mighty curious to see how the organic replacement, Masala Chai, would compare. When I got a coupon code from GM for free shipping, and since I’m in Canada, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to go for it. I’ve had a last smidgen of this Kashmiri Chai in my cupboard for the longest time and been dreading finishing it since it’s a lovely chai.

However, I was curious to see whether the Masala Chai would be a worthy replacement. So once the Masala Chai came on Wednesday, I decided to do a side-by-side taste test!

Both teas were brewed for 5 minutes in identical mugs using identical filters and a nearly identical amount of leaf. So here’s what I’m noticing about each tea.

The dry leaf: The leaf of the Kashmiri Chai looks larger and more intact, and you can definitely see whole chunks of cinnamon and pods of cardamom. In contrast, the leaf of the Masala Chai looks much more like a CTC tea, and while I can see the occasional cardamom pod, I see a lot of ginger and not much cinnamon. The smell of both varieties holds this up – the Kashmiri Chai smells much more of cinnamon and cardamom, while the Masala Chai smells much more of ginger.

The tea liquor: When they started brewing, the Masala Chai had a reddish tint to it and the Kashmiri Chai looked like more of a cool brown/umber colour. However, after a 5-minute steep, the colour of both teas was pretty much identical. The smell was fairly similar to the dry leaf: Kashmiri smelled cinnamon-ish, while Masala smelled like ginger.

Taste and mouthfeel: The Kashmiri Chai had a smooth sweet taste that coated the tongue and lingered long after the sip was over. I could taste the earthy base of the tea underneath, but could definitely sense the play of spices. In contrast, the Masala Chai smells and tastes strongly of ginger and malt, like gingerbread. Not quite a gingerbread cookie, but if you actually had a loaf of ginger-infused bread. I got a sweet potato note and a citrus note. I really can’t tell here what the base is, but it wouldn’t surprise me if the base were a Ceylon tea of some sort. It didn’t linger much on the palate, but was somewhat malty.

Verdict: I prefer the Kashmiri Chai tea, but considering they don’t make this blend anymore AND that this taste test was a sipdown of the last of the KC leaf, I’m out of luck.

Next, I might consider mixing the Masala Chai with some of Just Organic’s Just Charming Chai – the JO Charming Chai is too cinnamon-heavy, so they might complement each other really well. We’ll have to see.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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80

I’m nearing the end of this sample, and sad about it. It’s a lovely-smelling chai – very cinnamon-y and cardamom-y, without being too oppressively candy-like.

I really want to order the Masala Chai that Golden Moon offers since they switched to stocking organic blends, but I have no idea how similar it will taste. The reviews on Steepster so far are meh. (This makes me very sad)

Christina

ETA: I totally caved in and made the Golden Moon order once I realized that I had a coupon I could use. Will report on how similar the two blends (old Kashmiri Chai and new Masala Chai) will taste.

Michelle Butler Hallett

Stash carries a Kashmiri Chai made with green tea, spices, and some almond. Really good. And much better than their regular green chai.

Christina

I’ve found that I dislike green tea chais. Green tea generally has a sharp and vegetal profile that I think clashes with the sweet/savoury flavours of most chai spices.

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80

Man, I’m going to be sad when I finish up this tea. The cinnamon smell is so strong and sweet, I love it. I love the whole pods of cardamom, too. I think this chai is an excellent blend – though of course I know others prefer chais that are less cinammony.

Unfortunately, shipping from Golden Moon to Canada is so ridiculous that this definitely will not be a restock. :(

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