Harney & SonsEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
Thans to vbrown17 (from reddit) for this sample!
The loose leaf has pink petals in it, so I expected a bit of floral. It smelled of malty black tea, and toasted coconut and cream.
Taste wise, there is a nice rich black base with a malty mouth-feel. Very thick and creamy. Also very smooth. The coconut isn’t too heavy or soapy, which is wonderful. I love how creamy this is in terms of taste and mouthfeel. I want to drink this everyday, it’s like calorie free coconut hot chocolate. There aren’t any chocolate notes in there, exactly, but I would describe it as a very rich dessert-type tea.
Flavors: Almond, Coconut, Cream, Creamy, Malt, Nuts, Pastries, Rice Pudding, Sweet, Thick, Toasty, Vanilla
This was my first introduction to the world of tea. When I was 11 and thought I was sophisticated and cultured, my sister would make this for me when I slept over at her house. I drank it because I wanted to be cool like I thought she was, but I loved it from the first sip. It was delicious then and it’s delicious now. Beautiful balance of vanilla and the smokiness of the black tea. It’s balanced and smooth and a staple in my tea cupboard. Not cloying sweet, but certainly doesn’t need added sugar. It’s definitely a crowd pleaser and I love sharing it with guests now when they visit my house.
Flavors: Roasted, Vanilla
I am consistently intrigued by this tea. Every time I drink it I notice a different tasting note and aroma. When I open the tin, there is a distinct Earl Grey aroma thanks to the bergamot. When I drink it, the bergamot takes a back seat and I am left with a complex and rich cup of tea, it certainly doesn’t taste like an Earl Grey. It’s a smooth, creamy, tea with hints of caramel, bergamot, and fine nuances of malt. It’s perfect for any time of day.
Flavors: Bergamot, Caramel, Malt, Vanilla
The fragrance to this is just divine. And the tea really does taste like chocolate – but to my taste buds, it’s like one of those “midnight dark” chocolates that are this close to tasting like baker’s chocolate. I do love dark chocolate, but not that dark. Objectively, I think it’s probably a nice tea if you do love that earthy, superdark, almost espresso taste – I just happen to really dislike it. Accordingly, I don’t want to give it a number value because it seems rude to mark it low just because it isn’t to my taste, when I think it’s a fine tea. I’d probably give it about a 15 on my personal scale, though.
Flavors: Coffee, Dark Chocolate, Earth, Espresso
This was one of the better decaf teas I’ve tried. It had that perfumed flavor of bergamot, but definitely also the vanilla and brighter citrus flavors backed by a solid, not overly astringent black tea.
Flavors: Astringent, Bergamot, Citrus, Floral, Vanilla
This was a free sample, and worth drinking, but nothing special. It was no better than plenty of less expensive grocery store options, and honestly, worse than some! Drinkable, yes, but I wouldn’t buy more of it. If you like mint without being overpowered by it, this could be a good option.
This is one of my favorite teas – I usually never buy more than 2oz of any type of tea, and I bought 4oz of this, which will definitely last me a long while.
I’ve always loved jasmine teas, and this one smells amazing. I normally drink this in the mid-afternoon or the evening because it calms me quite well. Plus, I love drinking green tea at night.
I never liked chamomile tea from memory, but drank this sample tonight when I was trying to wind down, avoid caffeine, and read in the bath. I was surprised to find I enjoyed the taste – it was joyful and so different than what I’m used to. Looks like I’ll have to start giving chamomile another shot.
This was a thoughtful “open one early on Christmas Eve” from my sweet husband. Sweetly scented cocoa both dry and steeped…is creamy on its own without milk, but a splash turns it into dessert mousse. Perfect for watching Tazo snooze in my lap and counting blessings.
Indeed, we have all received grace after grace from His fullness… May your home and heart be filled with grace today.
This stuff taught me the meaning of the phrase “tea drunk.” I picked it up to keep at the office, thinking it would be a nice, refreshing afternoon tea. But after I’d made a cup for the first time I was shuffling around the kitchen in a haze, like I’d slipped outside for a doobie or pounded an airplane bottle of scotch at my desk.
It felt amazing, like I was getting away with something, but I finally decided that I’d rather stay sharp on the job. And being obviously spacy during a meeting while trying to pin it on “tea” might raise an eyebrow or two. So home it came, where it’s been getting me buzzed intermittently ever since.
In case you’re the kind of weirdo who drinks tea to actually taste it, this is about what you’d expect — grassy, marine, and slightly savory, with a mouthfeel that’s somehow slightly soupy but also refreshing. I get some light bitterness and astringency, but that could be due to my over-leafing (to get that buzz on). It’s a good, middle-of-the-road tea at a fair price.
Flavors: Grass, Marine, Seaweed
Got a sample of this in my last H&S order. I’m enjoying it much more than I expected, because I usually don’t find assam all that appealing. It’s very smooth and has a slight cocoa note.
Unfortunately H&S sent me DECAF tea though instead of regular, so THAT has to be sorted out. No way can I drink decaf.
Got a small sample pack of this in my last order. This tastes like a pretty standard black tea, except that it has a lovely malty aspect to it that I’m really enjoying. It’s probably not going to be something that I have to keep around all the time — I still prefer flavored black tea — but it makes for a nice change.
I’m not sure if I smelled vanilla and cloves or if I smelled a muted cinnamon when I opened my tin, but it was very warm scented. But I didn’t taste any orange or anything upon my first sip. As I let it steep longer I started tasting the cloves and a cinnamon finish. It’s a nice tea – not my favorite holiday tea, but it’s nice.
I used one satchet and 10 oz of water (or just filled up my 12 oz cup to that level? I never really properly measure…)
I can’t believe I didn’t try this one sooner. I love Earl Grey, and I love Harney’s Earl Grey Supreme, but their standard Earl Grey just fell through the cracks with me. I was always aware of it, but for some reason, I never made a point to try it. Obviously, that has changed. I ordered a sample of this tea with a recent order and worked my way through it during on-call duty. I found it to be a very respectable traditional Earl Grey.
I prepared this tea using the one step Western infusion process I tend to favor for non-Chinese black teas and many black tea blends. I steeped 1 teaspoon of loose tea leaves in 8 ounces of 212 F water for 5 minutes. I did not attempt additional infusions.
Prior to infusion, the dry tea leaves gave off a wonderfully clear aroma of bergamot. After infusion, I continued to note a pronounced bergamot presence that was joined by traces of malt and toast. In the mouth, the bergamot was very clear from the start. Around mid-palate, I noted subtle notes of malt, toast, leather, and wood coupled with what may have been a touch of caramel. The finish was tart and zesty, continuing to emphasize the bergamot flavor underscored by subtle malt and toast.
I’m a little perplexed by some of the other reviews of this tea. It seems that a number of other reviewers found this Earl Grey lacking in a distinct bergamot presence, but I did not find that to be the case at all. In my experience, the black tea base was mild enough to clearly highlight the bergamot while simultaneously being just strong enough to provide some balance. As far as standard Earl Grey blends go, I found this one to be very solid and to skew toward the fruitier, tarter end of the spectrum. To be clear, it does not pack the bergamot punch of Harney & Sons’ Earl Grey Supreme. I do not, however, think it is all that much of a step down from that blend. I think that fans of traditional Earl Grey and/or flavored black tea blends may find quite a bit to like with this one.
Flavors: Bergamot, Caramel, Leather, Malt, Toast, Wood
Smells alcoholic somehow, like chocolate cordials without any filling. Tasted like a watery, somewhat malty version of the same, and while I can’t be SURE this is what was responsible for the splitting headache all day that followed, I don’t care enough to retry to find out.
Flavors: Alcohol, Cocoa, Malt
I had just moved cross-country to Albuquerque, and Harney & Sons had their Celebration Tea back in stock, but only in 1 lb bags… so I did a bad thing and bought one. 1 lb of tea is a lot, guys! I already made my neighbor take a baggie full, and am trying to drink it down, but it may take me years… But so tasty. SO TASTY.
Shame on me — I picked this one up thinking it would be closer to a typical Japanese sencha, but even the picture here shows it to be Chinese — leaves that are less tightly rolled and more of a greenish-gray color than a deep green. Brewed, this tea produce a nuttier, vegetable flavor profile instead of the grassy, savory, sea-air profile I like in my sencha.
It’s not bad by any means, and I’ll try it again later on its own merits, but I was expecting more of a typical Japanese green tea with this — just a PSA.
Flavors: Nutty, Vegetables
Tea sample from eastkyteaguy
I am really liking this cup this morning. The rose surrounds the palate with a delightful floral sweetness that isn’t overwhelming with the floral aspect. Yes, it is a tea that is supposed to probably be overpoweringly floral, but it’s nice—not too overwhelming.
However, as I keep sipping, I realize that the base is probably what mellows it out—giving it the perfect balance.
Thanks eastkyteaguy for the sample!