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Handmade Tea

Recent Tasting Notes

66
drank Perry Tart by Handmade Tea
262 tasting notes

I was really excited to try this because I’ve been looking for a good pear tea for a while. Unfortunately, this isn’t it. Don’t get me wrong – it’s a lovely black tea. But I can’t taste any fruit at all in this. There are both dried pears and cranberries, but the taste doesn’t come through with steeping. Which is a shame.

As a black tea, however, it’s quite nice. Smooth, slightly sweet, and no hint of bitterness.

Preparation
2 min, 30 sec

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48

Tea #26 from the Here’s Hoping TTB
I made this last night and fell asleep before I could drink it. I wish I would have read the description before I made it, because it sure gave me a surprise when I reached for it this morning. I wasn’t expecting to start my day with such a lapsangesque tea. One thing that I have been sure of for quite some time is that I will likely never enjoy keemun or lapsang souchong, I just don’t enjoy even the slightest hint of smoke in my tea.

With this blend I think the smoke actually covers up most of the flavor, I’m not tasting any blueberry and barely a hint of lemon. This tea is going straight back in the box, hopefully someone else can appreciate it a bit more than I can.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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85

Two tasting notes for WINTER teas today!

Thanks so much again, Dexter3657! This is my perfect apple tea! Everything is on the lighter side here. Even though the black tea was steeped just after boiling for a few minutes, it is very subtle. The apple and cinnamon are definitely present, but also subtle. But it works very well anyway, in its lightness and subtlety. The apple is perfect – very sweet! I’m intrigued by this tea shop… I’m sorry I don’t have much more to say on this one.

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85

Having this tea again for breakfast. Apple cinnamon tea wasn’t the greatest pairing with breakfast, but then my breakfast was kind of weird. I felt like grazing, so breakfast was crackers, havarti cheese, cranberry stilton cheese, and scone with homemade blubarb jam, with a side of korean radish salad.

Still impressed how this tea is pretty good, the apple flavor is really well done! I heard from my husband that his family is having difficulty selecting christmas gifts for me. I suggested again my amazon list, as well as a list of Tea of the Month clubs, with Handmade tea now on that list. Fingers Crossed!

Tea Sipper

Blubarb jam! Sounds amazziing.

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85

This morning for breakfast I wanted something more special. I found a bag of fresh cranberries, so I made fresh cranberry scones. I thought a nice spicy black blend would pair awesomely, but I’ve been saving my chais. My father and my best friend + her boyfriend are visiting around christmas time, with my dad and my friend’s boyfriend chai fans, I’m saving my chais. Oddly, I don’t have that many chais in my stash.

Then, I remembered I had this tea that I snagged from BrewTeally Sweet! This is my seconds Handmade Tea blend, first being that tomato sage blend (wut). Winterfylleth Brew has a really good apple flavor that is natural, crisp and juicy. The cinnamon is backburner, but comes out end of sip. The black base is quite nice and doesn’t get bitter or dry. Very tasty!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec

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50
drank Blueberry Limón by Handmade Tea
598 tasting notes

Tea #49 from HHTTB2

Visually, there’s a lot going on in the dry blend. Big, plump blueberries and chunks of lemon rind . And quite a bit of both. I don’t really smell the smoke in the blend, but that could be a product of it’s travels in a giant cardboard box. Who knows. What I do smell is lemon/citrus.

Once I brewed this up? Oh. There’s the smoke.

It’s not like lapsang smoke, where’s it’s like getting thwumped with a burning log. (Or the whole fire dempending on the Lapsang, I suppose). But it’s definitely got some Keemun-esque smoke going on here. It pretty much overpowers all the other elements in the cup.

With sugar added in, I get something that reminds me of a lemon rubbed charred chicken breast. Better, but still not terribly good. I taste a slight blueberriness in the back of the sip. So now I have charred lemon chicken with blueberry compote. Not exactly what I was hoping for.

And back into the giant cardboard box it goes.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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75

Apples! that’s what I taste. Apple! I should have known. I read the ingredients of this tea before I asked moraiwe for it in a swap, but I had completely forgotten them by the time I brewed it this morning.

I smelled it and kept thinking it smells so familiar, what is that smell? It’s an extremely natural apple flavor. I hardly detect the cinnamon. I really should be able to recognize the smell of apple. . don’t know what was up with me then :)

Thanks for sharing this yummy tea with me moraiwe (^.^)

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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57

Tea #12 from HHTTB2

I like seeing chunky pieces in flavored black teas. It’s like. Oh hey! This is what this is supposed to taste like. It somehow also reassures me that it’ll taste less like chemicals. And while that’s not always true, it’s still nice.

There are big chunky pieces of coconut and kiwi in this blend. As well as tinier shredded bits of coconut. And quite a bit of both, honestly.

In spite of all of that, the black base here is simply overwhelming. The black tea is strong and mildly astringent. The coconut lends itself to a thicker mouthfeel, but not much else. As it cools, there is a subtle, natural kiwi flavor that pokes through. Sweetener also helps it along, just as creamer seems to coax out the coconut.

I think, judging how the fruit flavors started popping in the tepid cup, maybe this would be better iced, and perhaps give a better balance of flavors.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Blueberry Limón by Handmade Tea
225 tasting notes

Tea #3 for Traveling Tea Box C

I brewed this one up quickly this morning to drink while studying. I definitely agree with others that there seems to be some smokiness in the base. I also couldn’t get much blueberry in this one

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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15

Tea #3 From the HHTTB

bleh, nope, I can’t do it. I just don’t think I’ll be able to finish this cup. At first, I though maybe I could, but it’s not happening.

I read ahead of time that it had a smoky base, but I thought for sure the fennel and spices would mellow it out. Well, I don’t know if they mellow it, but they do something for sure. It’s sweet and smoky at the same time, but not a good pairing imo. The only place smoke and sweets can get along is while making s’mores :p
note to self: stay away from all smoky Chinese black teas!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec
BrewTEAlly Sweet

I don’t balme you. I COULD NOT DRINK THIS MYSELF BUT FIGURE MAYBE SOMEONE WOULD BE!

Caleb Brown

So sorry to hear that, Shelley! I guess Seed Harvest isn’t for everyone :) Hopefully you’ll get the opportunity to try more teas from Handmade Tea! I betcha we make a few blends you’d love :)

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Thanks, Nicole_Martin, for this tea!

I had this iced this week and it was very good! The kiwi was natural and very different from most of the fruit teas I’ve had. The coconut gave it a slightly roasted flavor although it was cold. I’m also enjoying the Handmade Teas bases. They are very warm-tasting. I look forward to trying this one hot.

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Backlog from yesterday!

I love this savory tea! The tomato is slightly sweet and the sage is super strong. It works well with the sweet black base that is just the teensiest bit smoky.

I had it with some fresh mozzarella plus tomatoes and basil from the garden out back. Yum!

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94

This one is totally hitting the spot.

I have been having one of those days where I am kind of hungry and keep eating but nothing is satisfying me. I have mostly been eating the Halloween Candy in the house that doesn’t seem like it is going to make it to Halloween :)

I started craving soup, but homemade soup. I neither have the ingredients nor the patience to make a big pot of homemade soup right now. So after drinking a few other teas, I settled on this one. It is savory, the slightest bit salty. It is full bodied and thick. There is a taste of sweet, ripe and savory tomatoes but it is not overpowering. More like tomato flakes not tomato paste. I feel like I am in Willy Wonka’s factory and I am having a piece of chewing gum that is really a 4 course meal!! I am hoping I don’t end up as a blueberry.

Delicious.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Fuzzy_Peachkin

I had this one today too! Perfect for the chilly weather!

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Backlog from Saturday Afternoon

I’ve been a fan of peppercorn in tea since I had Della Terra’s Lemon Pepper Melange. This is a delightfully warming blend. The base is delicious! It is golden-tasting, malty, bready and substantial. I like the peppercorn- it is strong, but not too overwhelming. It’s just enough to spread the warmth of the base. The orange peel does add some sweetness while it is hot, but turns just the slightest bit bitter as it cools, but that’s ok because I like this one so much, I don’t think I’d let it get cold. Yum! I have a feeling this will be something I’m going to be having on wintery mornings on my way to work.

Fuzzy_Peachkin

oh and thanks, Nicole_Martin, for this tea!

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74
drank Seed Harvest by Handmade Tea
598 tasting notes

I kept reading about Handmade Tea in all the traveling tea box posts, so in my curiosity, I treated myself to a subscription! So this is my first Handmade Tea! Yay!

This is a really savory blend, with plenty of interest offered by the combination of seeds. I really like that the tea here is the primary interest and everything else just adds depth. The fennel adds a bit of sweetness and the cumin a sort of woodsy flavor. That said, with fennel and anise, I definitely expected a licorice punch! Instead the herbs are in harmony so that no one flavor overpowers the other, making something hearty and deeply satisfying. The combination of teas used for the base also aid in this, adding a slight smokiness and helping the cumin hold up.

The overall cup is warming and definitely suited towards the coming weather. I agree with Debbie that peppercorns would have been a fantastic addition, making a slight spiciness and adding just the last bit of oomph I think this cup needs.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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70
drank Iced Lemon Mint by Handmade Tea
124 tasting notes

This makes a very nice iced tea. I’m typically not a huge fan of iced black tea, but the lemon (subtle) and mint (not subtle) give this a very pleasing flavor. I made this with a little bit of rock sugar and steeped in for quite a while (at least 6 minutes) before putting it in the fridge overnight.

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70
drank Iced Lemon Mint by Handmade Tea
124 tasting notes

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68
drank Seed Harvest by Handmade Tea
262 tasting notes

My first tea of the month from Handmade Tea! So excited. :)

I had tried two of Caleb’s teas in a traveling tea box, which is how I first heard about Handmade Tea and made me treat myself with a subscription. Both blends were very different, flavorful, and interesting. This one was no different.

A very savory tea. I can see this as a nice cold weather tea. Hearty, with some savory spices. I would have liked another spice in there to give the tea a bit more depth. Maybe a smidge of cardamom to add a bit of sweetness? Or some black pepper to give it some kick.

Preparation
4 min, 0 sec

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Thanks, Nicole_Martin for this tea!

Since I enjoyed peach hoppitea so much, I decided to drink this one and compare since it has appricots and hopps. These two teas are a similar idea, but worlds away in taste. The green tea in this base is very light and flowery. I steeped at 170 instead of 180 so maybe this played a role in it, but the apricot and hopps flavors were very light. After trying a two minute steep, I decided to add the leaves in for a longer time, but this just resulted in a stronger green tea flavor and a unpleasant drymouth. Oddly enough the base in this reminds me a lot of the green base in many Palais de The blends. It is not a taste I enjoy. The Butiki blends is darker, richer, and is more flavorful. I much prefer that non-green tea blend. I will however give this tea one more shot at the recommended steep time. I REALLY am starting to see how a variable temp tea kettle would be handy.

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67

One of the teas from my first traveling tea box! I love this box, it’s a great way to experience different teas. I hope to do more.

The dry tea had a very strange smell to me that I couldn’t place, definitely nothing delicate or fruity… Almost “mealy” like. Haha I’m so horrible at describing things in words! The smell once steeped calms down a bit, smells almost like a black tea but with a little something else added in.

So I’ve seen people describe the taste as tomato soup in tea form, and I think even one said cannelloni? There’s definitely truth to these! I can pick out the tomato and the sage gives me a feel for italian seasoning. So yes, tomato soup and/or cannelloni in tea form! Too bad it’s a black tea, as they just aren’t my favorite.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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79
drank Iced Lemon Mint by Handmade Tea
4041 tasting notes

Great Canadian Traveling Tea Box I guess i’ll be consistent with Dexter :)

I am a fan of this one! I wish there was a little bit more lemon in it, but over all it’s delicious! This made me want to pick up a subscription to handmade teas, though I’ll likely want until christmas time just to give myself a chance to get my cupboard under a bit more control. I’m cold brewing the resteep of this just to see how it tastes as a cold brew!

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Thanks, Nicole_Martin for this tea. This is pretty darn smoky! I drank the first half of the cup unsweetened and smoke was all I got. After reading Lala’s recent note, I added honey to the second half and the lemon flavor really popped! I may be getting a little blueberry in the background, but I may be imagining it just because I’m trying so hard to detect it. I don’t usually like smoky teas, but this one isn’t so bad.

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82
drank Blueberry Limón by Handmade Tea
709 tasting notes

Ok so I think I got this one now. Finally picked up some honey. (Side rant: who keeps the honey by the bread, I walked around the the store 3 times – ridiculous).

I brewed with about 1/2 tsp of honey. It is much sweeter with the honey. There is a honey flavour to the tea now. But the biggest change, is the first thing I taste is blueberry. Like a thick blueberry jam. Then there is a light lemonish taste. Further on in the sip, there is more of a tart lemon rind flavour, which then changes into the smokey base. It is much better when it is hot vs when it starts to cool off. Much more of a complex tea with the honey. It was good with maple syrup too, I am surprised at how different the flavour profiles are between honey and maple syrup.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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