Harney & Sons

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Recent Tasting Notes

70
drank Guayusa by Harney & Sons
30 tasting notes

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18

Everyone I know loves this tea and tries to give it to me. “I remembered that you like tea, and I just LOOOOVE this, so Merry Christmas/Happy Birthday/etc.” So I always think, “I’ll give it one more try” and then remember everything I hate about it. The thing about this tea is that it takes away from the actual tea experience for me. It tastes like a red hot. If I had any sugar or honey, it tastes like a sweet red hot. It doesn’t go with milk. I cannot influence the tasting experience of this tea in any positive way. While I like red hots, I don’t want to drink them.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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83
drank SoHo Blend by Harney & Sons
2765 tasting notes

Thanks very much to SimplyJenW for sending me a sample of this, I really wanted to try it!

As for me, well I’m not really sure chocolate goes that well in tea. This blend is nice though, it looks like it has some pink flowers in it, I wonder what they are? It has a light cocoa flavor that seems to go well with the black tea base but is ever so slightly “chalky”. I did not sense a lot of coconut until I added soymilk to it, which seemed to bring out the coconut flavor for me. I’d definitely have this as a dessert tea but I’m not sure I will buy any when I still have a big tin of Florence, their chocolate hazelnut tea, it’s tempting though!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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75

This is a very aromatic tea both dry and wet. The rose and bergamot combine to form a rather unique and fruitful partnership, something I had considered to be a potential issue when I was introduced to this blend. One does not need a heaping scoop to get the full flavor and strength from this tea, and as such my supply has lasted quite some time. I find this to be a very refreshing iced tea in the summer, needing nothing else than ice and a pitcher. I am not fond of adding sugar to this tea, as it distorts the intriguing flavor combination.

This is certainly a strong tea – I’d recommend it as a few times a week treat, surrounded by something of lighter body.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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50

I didn’t think this tea tasted like much – hot water with a faint herbal tinge. But I’m not a huge white tea fan (I keep trying!) I don’t think it was much of an Earl, but it might appeal to those who don’t want to be punched by the bergmot (I do, so this is not for me!)

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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81

With his book referenced in the description above being among my favorites, and one of my own personal tea-bibles I had high hopes to say the least. And when I found out it was an alluring blend of Keemun and Assam, I knew I had to have this tea. I was not disappointed.

I wasn’t expecting anything revolutionary or mind-blowing, just a new improvement to my morning routine. I found that in this delightful breakfast blend. My first cup of the day is generally the only one to which I add some almond milk and sweetener, but it needs to be a strong enough tea to hold its own, wake me up, and get me going in the AM. This not only fulfills these requirements, it exceeds them.

All in all this tea isn’t anything crazy. It’s not ostentatious, or gimmicky. But, true to the spirit of it’s namesake’s book, it IS one decent cup of tea.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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93

Tea of the morning…….

I really like this one as a first of the morning tea. It is a blend of Keemun and Assam from what I remember, and the Assam just kicks it up a notch. I am not a huge fan of Assam on its own, but I am a big fan of Keemun. The other thing that is fantastic about this is its reasonable price. I can get a pound of this for the price of 100g of my favorite Tan Yangs. This is my favorite morning blend.

Usual method.

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93

Tea of the morning……

More snow. Why? I am just so done with winter. Also, feeling kind of sluggish and ranty today. Have you noticed? Anyway, I chose this one because it is a good hearty breakfast tea to get me going. It is a super busy week with seven days in a row of performances for my kids. Today is day #2- the Jazz Band concert. DS who is 14 plays electric guitar, and DD who is 16 plays electric bass. It will be fun!

Completely reliable. Keemun with a kick of Assam.

Usual teapot method. I am going with Joseph Wesley’s recommendation to steep blacks at just under boiling; He recommended 190, and I am as close as I can get to that with my current kettle.

Flavors: Cocoa, Malt

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 24 OZ / 709 ML

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93

Tea of the morning, and first tea of the New Year!

Happy New Year! I needed something a little on the strong side (but not too strong) to get me going this morning. Usually, I reach for this or my Queen of Suburbia blend in that situation.

Solid taste of a decent Keemun with a punch of Assam to get me going.

Usual teapot method.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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93

Tea of the morning…..

I am trying to change out my sweetening methods. The last area where I use artificial sweetener is in my hot tea. I thought transitioning to sugar would be easy, but boy was I wrong. I am getting an aftertaste with sugar that I don’t think I get with Splenda. It is hard to explain, but it is kind of like concentrated canned sweet tea (of which I am not really a fan). I guess it needs a few more trials. Maybe it can be fixed with less sugar. Or maybe I will just stick with the Splenda. I have tried honey (adds too much flavor) and stevia (not fond of the licorice flavor this one gives). I wish I could just drink it straight, but it just doesn’t do it for me. I guess it needs a few more trials, because the goal is to eventually cut back on the sugar, too. I suppose I could just start cutting back on Splenda and cut out the ‘middle man’ (sugar).

Anyway, this is always my breakfast staple. Love this and won’t ever be without it. When it is gone, it becomes a tea ordering emergency.

Usual teapot method, trying to change up the sweetening method.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Josie Jade

We recently switched from Truvia and sometimes Splenda to real sugar. We get the organic, non-GMO sugar. I was hesitant at first, because I generally like my tea sweet and was afraid I would be able to taste a difference in a negative way, but was pleasantly surprised. The sugar leaves no funny taste at all in the tea, and my headaches have also disappeared! I can tell a difference between regular white sugar and the organic, non-GMO sugar, which we get at Walmart.

Uniquity

Interesting that sugar bothers you more than the artificial stuff. I am one of those people who can taste artificial sweetner in anything (and I avoid it like the plague, can’t stand it). There is still a big push in supermarket products to opt for fake sugar (rather than less or no sugar) and I have to check my yogurt thoroughly to make sure I don’t grab the wrong stuff. I hope you can find a way to make it palatable – maybe rock or raw sugar? Brown sugar would probably add a lot of flavour but maybe worth a try. I suspect you are also on to something with using less. Try using half, taste to see if it is too sweet or bitter and adjust up slowly. Best of luck!

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93

Tea of the morning…..

So happy to be home with all of my teas. I was on a short trip where the water is different, and I only travel with tea bags. You forget how critical the water is until you are away.

I would call this tea my ultimate breakfast tea. It is the perfect blend of a Keemun and just a portion of Assam to make it just a tad heartier. I love Keemun on its own, but Assam is usually hit or miss for me. The addition of the Assam here, though, just works. If I could call it SimplyJenW’s Breakfast (sorry Malachi), I would. I usually buy this one at least a pound at a time, but last time it was 2.

Usual teapot method.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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93

Tea, or should I say, teas of the morning…..

I decided to do a side by side of Malachi McCormick and Supreme Breakfast. I do like them both, but am trying to decide which one to keep around. I do realize that I could keep them both, but I am going for a little more simplicity here. I need to rein in the stash and settle on a few breakfast tea choices rather than a few dozen.

I think the Supreme Breakfast is heavier on the Assam, but it could just be that it is blended with higher quality teas. I get a heavier malt than the Malachi. I brewed this one a little longer than I did last time (4 minutes instead of 3) and I think this hits the Assam bitterness threshold for me. It could probably be corrected for my palate with steeping time. I do have to say that I am leaning more toward the Malachi. What I love about Keemun tea is the cocoa notes, and Malachi has them. They are much lighter in the Supreme Breakfast. I definitely can’t say that I am sorry that I tried the Supreme because it is a great tea blend, but for now I think the Malachi fits me better. It is such a relief that I can still be happy with good basic tea, and that my tastes have not all given over to the more expensive varieties. (Malachi is currently $20 a pound, and Supreme Breakfast is $32.)

Brewed side by side by the usual mug method.

(I also ordered a Harney Mug in my shop order…it is the same as my white ForLife mug, except with the Harney logo. Since I have three ForLife infusers from my one mug and two teapots, it all works out perfectly for side by side comparisons!)

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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93

Tea of the morning……

And my breakfast tea of choice! I love this one as my morning tea. It was not all that long ago that I purchased a 4 oz tin of this. It is gone, now, and I don’t think I even shared any of this one. I think this needs to go into the category of purchasing by the pound.

Ah, the magic of tea. It really is helping just a little with the allergies (and since it was such a mild winter, I have a feeling that my allergy season will be horrid). Or maybe it is really just keeping me better hydrated…..

Usual teapot method.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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93

Second tea of the morning……

After my first tea of Queen Catherine from H&S, and before my third tea of Ceylon #1 from thepuriTea. Let’s face it, the kind of no-buy I need to be on relates to black teas. I needed to do one last check on the Malachi Blend to see if it truly had an edge over some of the other teas in my cupboard as a breakfast tea. The conclusion….oh, yes, at some point I need this.

The more and more I drink black tea blends, I appreciate why certain teas are put together. The parts definitely make the whole better. I do love Keemun, but there is something about the addition of the Assam in the Malachi blend that keeps it smooth while adding heartiness and a richness. I would not at all call this a brisk tea. There is no astringency. Since I am not one who likes to add milk to tea all that often, this really works for me. The Queen Catherine is more subtle, somehow, and a bit sweeter. More of an afternoon type tea for me, even though I will gladly drink it in the morning, too. There is more of a cocoa note in the Queen, and much less heartiness. As for the Ceylon #1, this tea has a bready taste. It is not what I would call hearty, either, and it has just a hint of briskness where the Malachi is all smooth. I definitely have my mind made up on the Malachi, but I seriously need to spend some time drinking the black tea I have on hand before adding to the stash. I am thinking Malachi is poundworthy for me.

Usual mug method.

Thank you, ashmanra for the sample. Alas, it is gone, but I will be buying this……

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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93

Tea of the morning…….

And a crazy morning it was! The school bus was early (the kids missed it), and as I opened the garage door to take the kids to school, the opener went kur-put which meant the car was stuck inside. Everything was resolved, eventually, and this tea along with a breakfast of wheat toast with soft boiled eggs restored my sanity. I am definitely buying some! Thank you to ashmanra for sending me a taste! It is more than a decent cup of tea in my book!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
ashmanra

Have the read the excerpt from his book? Hilarious!

Serendipitea

OMG what an awful way to start to the day :(

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70
drank East Frisian by Harney & Sons
39 tasting notes

This tea uses what appears to be CTC assam in the blend (maybe with others) which results in a deep red brew, only held back in darkness by the few darjeeling leaves. The tea is both fragrant and vibrant, though not as full of body as I expected. Nonetheless this is a solid cup of tea that does not require significant steeping time and will satisfy those who are rather strict in their like for a classic tasting moderate to full black tea. I find that I cannot consume a significant amount of this tea like I can for most congous, as it brings to mind the comparison of rich chocolate satin cake, for which one is satiated after a few bites and must wait some time before the desire returns.

This blend also makes a good, dark iced tea which is excellent with fresh orange slices.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 15 sec

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97
drank Vanilla Comoro by Harney & Sons
55 tasting notes

Dense, complex, naturally sweet; those are its nice qualities. But I have to be in the right frame of mind for this tea, on the down side it is decaf and its bouquet is like a strong vanilla candle.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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94

I finally got around to buying a tin, so I have this tea in possession again! I love cinnamon teas, and usually drink one each evening (alternating between this, CS Bengal Spice, and chai.) I love how naturally sweet this is – no sugar needed, although occasionally I will add a single packet and treat it as dessert. Definitely no milk – it kills the spiciness for me. I like to give this tea to my friends – they can never believe it is unsweetened!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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94

Years ago I was addicted to a tea from Celestial Seasonings called “Cinnamon Rose.” It had a great intense cinnamon flavor, and I drank it daily. When it was discontinued I was really upset, and I bought tons of cinnamon teas trying to replace it. Bigelow cinnamon was disappointing, and while I love chai I sometimes want cinnamon by itself. They were all unsatisfactory until today! The scent in the package is intense, so I was excited! I brewed 2 tsp in a big (16 oz) mug using my infuser for 5 minutes. I tasted cautiously, and was rewarded with tons of cinnamon flavor! The tea is naturally sweet, and that is coming from someone who sweetens everything. It’s as though the cinnamon is tricking your tastebuds into tasting sweetness – at first sip it is not sweet, but leave it in your mouth for a second and the sweetness comes out. I can’t taste orange/cloves/whatever else is supposed to be here, but who cares? Cinnamon is my favorite spice, and I will be ordering this tea!

After half a cup plain I decided to see what it would be like with a touch of milk (I use 1%.) The milk actually tones down both the spice and sweetness a bit. The tea is best plain, but I think that with the addition of milk and a touch of honey this could be a fabulous desert tea (at least if you love cinnamon like I do!) I also have the green version to try, and I will have to sample the herbal. I’m so glad I put this in my first Harney and Sons order!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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100

AWESOME! This is probably the BEST tea I’ve ever had! ♥

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88
drank SoHo Blend by Harney & Sons
1546 tasting notes

Sip down. With resteeps I got at maybe 9 cups out of this sample – thanks again SimplyJenW. When this is really hot, it has a bit of a bitter coffee bite that I don’t care for, but once it begins to cool the magic begins. I try my best to sip it slow but my cup must have a hole in it as it goes empty really fast. This very good. If I were to change anything about it, I would swap the base with something that gives a little more bottom end to support the flavors. I don’t know if this makes sense but a little thickness would send this in to the stratosphere.

ashmanra

Just bought a pound of this for my BF for her birthday!

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88
drank SoHo Blend by Harney & Sons
1546 tasting notes

I have this at work now, where I have a better setup. I don’t have a kettle or the workspace at home. Weird I know. About a spoon of leaf @ 4m w/boiling water.

Not using the microwave really changes the flavor of this. Bolder. My natural inclination with a tea like this is to chug, but slowly sipping brings out the layers of flavor. First, I taste tea. Next, a hot chocolate rush, and then the coconut. In the aftertaste you get a good blending of all three flavors. This doesn’t make me think Mounds so much as one of the little red and white coffee tins my wife would buy.

I don’t buy flavored tea much any more, as the teas I can buy locally are generally way overdone. This and the Hot Cinnamon Spice are causing me to rethink flavored teas. Both are well balanced and enjoyable cups. Harney does it right.

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88
drank SoHo Blend by Harney & Sons
1546 tasting notes

Just got home for the evening. The leaf was still in my press so I thought I would see if this one would go a third steep. It is a bit thin but the coconut is really shining through on this steep. I think this is my favorite cup of this yet. Glad I pushed this further.

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88
drank SoHo Blend by Harney & Sons
1546 tasting notes

Thank you SimplyJenW for this sample. The dry leaf aroma is milk chocolate. Steeped 4 minutes w/boiling water. The brew is muddy looking in the pot. In the cup, it looks like tea – with a bright and clean appearance. There is no escaping the chocolate scent before during or after sipping. The tea is present in the taste but in the background a bit. The coconut comes into play in the aftertaste. I don’t think I used enough leaf (1 tsp) on this, my first attempt. I still managed two cups and I think it might go a third. Next time I will up the leaf. This is a nice dessert cup with a pleasant lingering aftertaste that leaves you craving more.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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