Harney & Sons
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Holy nuts! This did not scream Nutella to me as I’ve heard others suggest ( and as I might have expected from cocoa and hazelnut), but it most certainly screamed NUTS!!! This is probably the nuttiest tea I’ve tried so far. And don’t get me wrong…I did get cocoa flavor in there. It even stuck around through a second steeping. It was lovely. I’m so glad Beorhthraefn set me such a generous sample of this! Thanks! I will enjoy every bit of it!
Flavors: Cocoa, Nutty
I am having this iced and if I didn’t know any better, I would think this was JUST a guava tea and nothing else. The only other flavor I am getting is a small touch of astringency from the base. It isn’t bad per se but nothing about it really captures my attention. Also, I don’t understand the need to blend black tea and green tea for the base given it doesn’t really do anything for the cup except make it a pain to boil. Oh well. Hopefully my tea twin, Roswell Strange, will have better luck with this because the rest of my sample is getting tossed in to her package. 175.
The guava is strong with this one both in scent and taste. It is pleasant and fruity and would most likely make a nice cold brew, though the hot cup is still nice. I worried the hibby would make this tart but this cup is smooth and sweet. I don’t taste the strawberry much either so perhaps the hibby and strawberry are canceling each other out and leaving the guava alone to really shine. However, guava is a taste that I am not a huge fan of and I find at times the scent can either be appealing or off putting depending on my mood. With that in mind, this certainly isn’t going to be a staple in my cupboard but it has made for a fun new tea to try. Thank you Naylynn for passing it along.
Thanks Ost for the sample! :)
Well, this isn’t terrible, or anything, but it isn’t outstanding in any way. I imagine this would be a good one to brew strong, sweeten and pour over ice. The white tea is actually kind of greeny tasting, which doesn’t bother me, but I could see it being too astringent for some folks.
I bought a large tin of this a while ago and forgot about it, it wasn’t until I was going through my bottom shelf earlier that I remembered it. Well it’s the start of Autumn so I suppose it’s safe to drink this tea now.
The bags are nicely see through and pyramid shaped, the rooibos smells a bit strong but with some fruit behind it. Not great but not bad.
Once steeped the colour is dark brown/red and smells strongly of orange and cranberry, it’s waxy and super sour. Not the nicest again but here goes nothing…
It’s milder than it smells thankfully, though the Rooibos is thick and made sour by the fruit after tastes. It tones down some of the natural sweetness of the Rooibos though it is still rather sweet (by my standards). Orange is dominating so really it’s Orange Rooibos rather than African Autumn, or what I perceive African Autumn to taste like. In other words it’s a special name for a non special tea.
I should add that it is drinkable, and as much as I adore orange it’s just too thick a base for my preference. Still I can finish the tin with relative ease, and I can look forward to re-using it once the bags have gone….that gives me some momentum to use them.
Flavors: Cranberry, Orange, Rooibos, Sour
When I saw this on the Harney & Sons website I really wanted to try it. It just sounded so delicious! Finally got my sample in yesterday and decided to give this a taste. When you smell the dry leaves there is definitely something chocolatey and coconutty. After brewing it the smell is just so yummy…a vanilla chocolate cream. Drinking it is even better. I feel like I’m drinking a vanilla dessert beverage with just a hint of floral undertone. Very delicious!
Flavors: Chocolate, Coconut, Rose, Vanilla
Unfortunately, I oversteeped my second cup, to the point that after three sips I had to toss it: bitter, bitter, bitter. Just basing this off of my first cup, it’s fine. It’s more earthy than I typically like. I’d say that if you were looking for something earthy with oomph, then you should definitely check this one out. M
I have been very curious about this tea for quite some time — so I was beyond thrilled to discover that I had ordered a sample of it a few years back. Even with it being a bit older, this tea is pretty freaking amazing. I have to admit (and feel free to express your horror at this) I don’t like chocolate. I overdid it as a child, so a little goes a very long way for me and anything with cocoa in it.
But this? This is a pretty incredible tea. Of all of the samples I’ve been trying as of late, this is the one I’m most tempted to add to my cupboard. I mean, the aroma was absolutely lovely and it lingered for quite some time. If I was a chocolate fan, then I’d likely move this into the “teagasm” category. NE
Earl Grey was not one of my favorite teas, but this one has made me a convert. Brisk but creamy and smooth with the perfect amount of bergamot for an earthy yet floral finish. Delicious prepared Irish style, i.e. with a touch of milk and sweetener. I use either honey or raw sugar.
Flavors: Citrus, Creamy, Floral, Smooth
A few days ago, I celebrated making it to another birthday! My wonderful and very thoughtful wife gave me a Breville OneTouch Tea Maker for my birthday three years ago. That amazing machine has really contributed to the joy and fun of my tea tasting experiences. If you are looking for an extremely convenient method to make a consistently fantastic cup of tea every time, I highly recommend the OneTouch Tea Maker. But I digress…Where was I?…Oh yeah…Now I remember. (Please bear with me. You will recall that I am another year older.) For this year’s birthday, my beautiful wife also remembered my tea “habit” by giving me a trademark black container of Harney & Sons Paris tea.
When I lifted the lid of the metal container, there was a strong fruity aroma underneath. I’ve tried a few other French teas by Mariage and those teas seemed to have the identical unbrewed odor.
I steeped the short black leaves for five minutes at 212 degrees as directed on the container. The finished color was a very dark gold, almost brown. The aroma was more vanilla than fruity.
My first taste produced a medium-strength black tea flavor. After that, vanilla followed by fruit seeped into my taste buds for the remainder of my cup.
It’s interesting that the flavor of this tea is also very similar to the Mariage teas. That’s not a bad thing because I do enjoy those teas. Maybe the signature flavor is mandatory to call the blend “French.” I would say the one characteristic that sets this one apart is the dominance of the vanilla flavor over the fruit.
This is a nice smooth tea with no bitterness and a lighter than expected after taste. The flavor theme is a composite of fruity vanilla. The tase is neither overpowering nor overly sweet (if there is such a thing!). This selection was another one of those teas where the more I drank it, the more I liked it!
Flavors: Fruity, Tea, Vanilla
As good iced as it is hot. Cranberries do not overpower the taste of the tea – just add a bit of slightly fruity sweetness. Love this iced – may be my new go to for colder weather iced tea. An all around delicious black.
Flavors: Cranberry, Sweet, Vanilla
This tea’s been languishing in my cupboard for entirely too long. It just never seemed the right time to drink it because cranberry. Such a colder weather kind of thing. So now that we’re solidly in October, I thought I’d drag it out to go along with my homemade cranberry orange scones. What an awesome flavor this is! Just the right amount of fruitiness, nice body, fragrant without going over the top, and best of all, the PERFECT flavor to go with almond milk! I mean, cranberries and almond – duh ! Why did I wait so long to try it (insert face palm here)? I’ll be downing this stuff regularly for the next few months without question.
Flavors: Almond, Berry, Cranberry, Sweet, Vanilla
I want to love this tea. Many of my tea frienz love this tea. Me? It’s just okay. Coconut, I get. Chocolate, not so much. Thick, for sure. But just missing any depth of flavor that I long for. It’s on the tip of my tongue and that’s it, and these days I expect so much more from a tea.
I think (?) I grabbed this in a joint order about this time last year. Jeepers. Time to start seriously sipping things down if this is the first time I’ve reached for it.
Flavors: Coconut, Cream, Paper, Thick
Thank you SO MUCH Boychik for sending me a sample of this one! I REALLY wanted to try it! Fig and lemon on Harney’s black tea base just sounded delightful. However, I’m not sure if this is the base they would usually use. Or maybe my taste is changing… it seems to have a bit of that cardboard flavor that I notice in other black teas. I hope I don’t notice them in the other blends now. There is a sweetness and fruitiness to the tea but I’m not sure I’d actually call it fig. The lemon is missing for me too. The magic I expected just isn’t here, as I love Harney’s Paris and Tower of London which I’d rather reach for. Of course I’m happy to have tried this one!
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 tsp // few min after boiling // 3 min
Steep #2 // just boiled // 5 min
First tea of the morning! This sample came from boychik’s lovely swap package (I saw swap, but the rascal hasn’t told me what she wants me to send yet…). Another Indian Assam to try, hooray! I really want to branch out in this area. The leaves are short and somewhat broken, and they’re about half golden and half dark brown. Dry scent is extremely mild, but there’s a little bit of malt and sweetness. I steeped a level teaspoon of leaf for 3 minutes at 200 degrees.
Much to my surprise, the steeped tea has an interesting wine-y aroma. There’s also malt and the sweetness of dark dried fruit. This tea seems to transform in my mouth. At the beginning of the sip, the flavor is muscatel and heavily fruity (cranberries, tart cherries). However, near the middle and end of the sip, the flavor turns more toward the bready side, though it keeps a hint of fruit preserves. There is strong malt throughout, and definitely a fair touch of astringency. A tasty and surprising tea!
Flavors: Astringent, Baked Bread, Cherry, Cranberry, Malt, Muscatel
Recently i became obsessed with WuYi oolongs.
This is a sample i bought fr H&S couple months ago. The tea is expensive so i decided to rather try small sample. I was a bit disappointed ,its was only 5.4g in a packet and at least 1g of it just dust. Boo
alright, 5.4g 100ml gaiwan 195F
rinse/ short steeps
the tea is complex. Sweet, spicy, roast, charcoal, some floral in the background and raw walnuts. maybe a hint of dried apricots but its masked because of heavy charcoal. I did enjoyed it. i dont think i would buy it because i just not in love with it.
So far I really like Tao Tea Leaf version.
Golden Monkey is one of my favorite Chinese black teas, and this one does not disappoint. Besides creating a beautiful golden-brown liquor in the cup, it has a really smooth taste with notes of dark honey or caramelized fruit. Truly exceptional!
Flavors: Cocoa, Smooth
This is really good, but be aware that it is pretty strong. I liked it cold, I was able to steep it twice if I stuck to three minute steeps. I love how currants are fruity without being sweet, it gave the tea a nice fall vibe to it. I would absolutely purchase (this was a sample).
I drank this almost right after drinking the sencha. That was amistake. It did not go down well at first. But then I ate breakfast and tried another round. Much better tasting! From the name I was expecting smoke, but I got an earthy vegetable flavour, and no smoke. Maybe I should stop expecting gunpowder to have a smoky flavour.
It’s a good tea if you don’t drink it right after a sweet buttery tea. I’ll re-visit this one when it’s the first tea of the day, and provide a better review. Thanks for the sample, Cameron B!