Harney & Sons

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Recent Tasting Notes

86
drank Paris by Harney & Sons
5 tasting notes

One of my favorites! This one is a yummy flavored black tea without overpowering added flavors like so many teas that are popular. It’s delicious and reminds me very much of the French Line tea.
Good with milk, but I have to brew it extra strong to stand up to it. I tend to go through a tin quickly because I brew it nearly double strength.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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100

I’ve finally come back to the world of tea reviewing, I’ve actually been making a point to brew a pot before I start my day, sort of a grounding before I distract myself in the fight against ever present boredom (being unemployed sucks) in any case, here we go and as always I start off with my favorite a blend by Harney and Sons.

Tower of London – There’s something terribly comforting about this tea, especially in the morning, a blend of bergamot (cuz English love them some bergamot) good black tea, honey and other secret things H&S have mixed in, the first thing you’ll notice when opening the tin is the strong, wrapped up in warm in blankets scent of honey, in all reality I cant describe it properly it really smells more like honey than…well honey does, and it easily overpowers the aroma of the bergamot and tea, although there scents are there to lend some complexity, as an English style black tea mix its pretty in a dark browns and blacks kind of way.

Portions were 1 teaspoon per 7oz – Steeping 5min at 190° with a prewarmed pot.

Steeping seems to take some of the punch out of the honey sent but its still the main player in the steep’s aroma, although the heavier body of the black tea and sharper notes of the bergamot do shine through better.

As for taste it’s a bit of a surprise but the honey is just barely there, despite being such a diva in the aroma on the tongue the main player is the excellent blend of black teas Harney & Sons used, there is the delicate if sharp taste of the bergamot, but this seems to me a primarily a breakfast tea its strong a little bitter caffeine rich and full bodied, its really really good for waking ones ass up, ironically I did this brew without any sweetener and while I drank the whole pot that way in the end I think it may need…well a little honey.

Also if you wanna see some pictures (Since I cant figure out how to insert them into tasting notes) Check out the tea and gardening blog me and http://steepster.com/tabby run, contents been a little sparce lately but were fixing that promise.

http://gardensandtea.tumblr.com/

Flavors: Apricot, Bergamot, Honey

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 5 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 20 OZ / 591 ML

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80
drank Florence by Harney & Sons
50 tasting notes

From the Not My Cup TTB

A nice chocolate tea. I wish Harney had free shipping to Canada.

Flavors: Chocolate, Hazelnut, Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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77

Unusual tea. When drank fresh and very hot, it’s almost a hot tea with a slight cheerios flavor. When it’s cooling, at first i thought it was growing bitter, but was actually the malt and honey coming out. Not bad at all but not a favorite from the company. The taste is certainly not boring or average, it is smooth and in no way artificial, but I’m not crazy about the maltiness that comes through when it starts cooling.

Flavors: Bitter, Honey, Malt

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 5 OZ / 147 ML
Nichole

Sounds interesting!

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77

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I served this tea to my eldest daughter, who really doesn’t drink black tea at all, only green, white, and puerh. I told her we were going to have a black tea that wasn’t like black tea at all.

She agreed that it seemed like drinking a Chinese green tea to her. I like this one very much and she was pretty impressed with it, too, especially with the idea that this plantation uses Chinese tea bushes and uses an older style of lighter processing. I think that is what adds up to make this a successful tea for green tea lovers to enjoy.

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There is so much I do not know about tea, and I know the least about Darjeeling.

The first one I had was from A Southern Season. I thought it was “normal” black tea and I made it that way. I got a stomach ache. Then I read that it should have a shorter steep and tried it that way. It was better, but I still preferred Chinese teas and focused on them, having only a few Indian teas over the years. So I feel ill equipped to tell a Darjeeling lover about this tea, but I can tell what this tea lover found.

Dry Leaf Scent: bright, high, green, fresh, sharp-ish, with a hint of latex like a good oolong has.
Liquor: golden yellow, which always surprises me since Darjeeling is a “black” tea.
Taste: I am surprised to find myself thinking, "What magic is this? A Darjeeling that reminds me of Chinese green, a Darjeeling that has me thinking that this would be good to serve to my picky husband who only likes black tea drowned in milk and sugar, or green, white, or oolong plain. Yes, I am thinking that he would like this with our Asian takeout dinners.

The body is listed as medium in their description, but it has a creamy mouthfeel that makes me lean toward saying it is really creamy medium. The flavor is much like the scent of the dry leaves, but there is a little nut flavor underneath it all, with a tingle of citrus and grass, especially as it cools. I am reminded of Chun Mei. The taste and creamy feel really linger, like my tongue is swaddled in the last sip. It really fills the mouth and sinuses. And yet, it is light!

Having tasted it, I looked at the company description on their website. Chinese tea bushes, lighter style of processing… well, of course it all makes sense now!

My youngest daughter is drinking it with me. This is her first Darjeeling and she says that while she is not good at identifying and describing scents, she is on her second cup and says, “This is really good.”

And now we have polished off the whole pot! Thank you, Russell and Harney and Sons, for the opportunity to expand my palate!

K S

I generally use water at 195 F or there abouts. I’m no Darjeeling expert but for me that helps alleviate the stomach issue. Anyway, glad to see you have found an apparent keeper.

ashmanra

Thank you, K S! I did try 203F for three minutes with this one and had no stomach ache. With heftier, darker ones I will try that lower temp for three minutes.

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92

From the Not My Cup TTB

Dreamy. Earl Grey with a hint of blackberry. I have to find more of this.

Flavors: Blackberry

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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drank Black King 2015 by Harney & Sons
2048 tasting notes

Harney and Sons sent this as a generous sample to try. I didn’t know how generous until I looked it up just prior to steeping – $36 for two ounces! But all it took was opening the pouch to know that this was no ordinary black tea.

I am reminded of a tea that JacquelimeM and I fell in love with several years ago from them. I believe it was called Golden Snail and yes, I bought it because it was worth it. Sometimes you need to buy a really special tea. Just make sure that it IS really special and makes you feel magnificent when you drink it. You can have ordinary any old time.

There is a generous sprinkling of gold among the rich, black leaves. I followed their recommendation of four to five minutes with boiling water, going just over four.

The aroma is thick and full-bodied, as is the mouth feel of the tea. The nutty notes are high ones, they say pecan but I also am reminded of walnut. There is an incredible smoothness to this naturally sweet tea. (Remember all those golden tips!) It goes down so easily! My youngest daughter and I drank this at breakfast and she said, “Mom, I can tell this is really high quality tea.”

As I drink this, the thick body almost comes across as a creaminess, and the nut flavors lend a high note to the rich caramel smooth midtones. Think of the midtones of their Golden Monkey, specifically theirs because I have had Golden Monkey from places like Teavana that tasted nice enough but were more like a lower grade Keemun. The rich and creamy sweetness that I taste and feel is probably what they refer to as caramel, and I get that.

This may be going on the next shopping list, and I am pretty excited that my eldest and my youngest girls will be at the Soho Harney and Sons on Saturday! I can’t wait to try the other samples. Thank you, Russell and Harney and Sons!

Sil

ooooh….

looseTman

“The aroma is thick and full-bodied, as is the mouth feel of the tea. … There is an incredible smoothness to this naturally sweet tea. … As I drink this, the thick body almost comes across as a creaminess, and the nut flavors lend a high note to the rich caramel smooth midtones. … The rich and creamy sweetness that I taste and feel is probably what they refer to as caramel, and I get that.”

Sounds wonderful! When is their most significant sale of the year?

ashmanra

looseTman: I don’t know! They offer free shipping over $50 every day, and frequently offer free shipping with a $25 order. They have sales of one sort or another at every major holiday and then some. Have you signed up to receive their emails? Perhaps someone from the store will see your question and answer! Otherwise, shoot them a message and see if they have any big sales coming up.

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86

One of my weekend guests so generously shared her nasty cold with me, so I’m binge drinking the teas in my house in an attempt to feel better. In all fairness, I’ve had this tea before but just never managed to write a review. Now that I’m laid up with this horrible illness, I’ve got plenty of time! First time I had this tea was at the H&S tea room in Soho, and I ordered a pot of it on a whim. Such delicious fruitiness! I was happily surprised. I’m not really getting any apricot – just plums and cherries, but that’s just fine – it’s delightful. Kind of my idea of a perfect fruity black – almost sweet with lots of beautiful aroma. No need for sweetener nor milk, it’s just perfect on it’s own. And not at all medicinal, which is amazing considering how often flavors like this end up. Would I try this iced? Maybe, but it’s so good hot that I don’t feel compelled to change a thing. Maybe when the weather gets really warm. For now, it’s doing me a lot of good just as it is!

Flavors: Cherry, Plums

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
TeaBrat

good luck. My BF “shared” his with me too… :)

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66

Really interesting tea with the combination of currant and caramel. Not my cup of tea, but it was okay.

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15

I can’t believe this has such a high rating.. Maybe there was something wrong with my satchet. The dry leaf smells like an atomic fireball candy, but there’s no spice in the taste and the tea is cloyingly sweet. I have to dump this out.

TheLastDodo

I didn’t even try the sample I had, cinnamon = NO in my book.

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90
drank Paris by Harney & Sons
8 tasting notes

Honestly, my first thought about this tea was that it tastes like Trix cereal. It could almost be a breakfast replacement, what with the cereal taste and the caffeine content needed to get my engine going in the morning. I take it with a splash of cream, and it’s fruity to begin with, but finishes with caramel and vanilla notes. The only downside is that it only produces 1 good infusion (the 2nd is very weak), but I’ve found this is a common trait among black teas.

Flavors: Black Currant, Caramel, Vanilla

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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64
drank Rooibos Chai by Harney & Sons
6485 tasting notes

not a fan. This was one i picked up in one of my various hotel trips and while i’m glad to try it and cross it off my list, there’s no need to try it again. It wasn’t bad…but it’s not my preferred style of chai.

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Very good tea,great flavor,I would buy it again.

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drank Caribe by Harney & Sons
10 tasting notes

Not a favorite,it is ok………but to me when it is steeping the smell reminds me of cat pee.

Preparation
4 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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65
drank Mint Verbena by Harney & Sons
726 tasting notes

Sooo the second time my boyfriend came to visit me, I let him try a Harney & Sons tea-the SoHo Blend, and he loved it. Also this year him and his bro and his bro’s gf came out as a birthday surprise for their mum (my boyfriend and his bro lived in England at the time and his parents live in NY, where he is now), so I sent him a package full of some tea samples I’d wanted him to try for the longest time-I had to get him off of the classic English Breakfast tea with milk. :P He can’t go back anymore! Muahahahahahaha!
Anyway, one of the samples I gave him was Paris, and he loved it too!
So he finally graduated Uni about a month ago and I get to see him on Monday, he’s coming for a short visit-Monday to Saturday since he’s planning to come for this Christmas anyway. Had to place a H&S order for his graduation present. Got him the SoHo blend and The Tower of London-but the 5 satchets little tin. Oh my goodness, When I opened the package I almost missed the tin because it’s so tiny! XD
But anyway, since it’s like Paris I thought he’d like it. (: I just gotta finish a cross stitch for him and then his graduation gift will be complete! :D So excited!
Anyway!
Got three samples with that order. Two were the same old boring teas, like the chai one and the pomegranat one plus an iced tea pouch. This one was the only new one-so I had to try!
And all I really gotta say is that it was minty. Very very minty. Tried really hard to find another flavor or something, but no. It was just a crap load of mint in that mug for both steeps! It wasn’t bad-I mean, I had two cups of it. But it wasn’t amazing either. Was a fine tea, just not something I’d buy or drink again. Kinda a boring tea to be honest :P But hey, better boring than bad!

Flavors: Mint

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drank SoHo Blend by Harney & Sons
99 tasting notes

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not sure if this was an old tea bag or what..but i might as well have been drinking water. I think i’ll stick to fresh tea for my straight greens.

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drank Olive Leaves by Harney & Sons
3 tasting notes

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90

I only had a sample of this that I ordered with my last restock of Florence, Paris, and Scottish Morn, so this is already a sipdown. A pleasant one for sure though- at least for people who like strong black teas. This blend is more in line with Scottish Afternoon if I had to pick another Harney tea to compare it to, but I still prefer my beloved Scottish Morn to either. I think it is the Darjeeling- I just tend to gravitate away from it towards Yunnan, Ceylon, etc. If you love Darjeeling though, then this might be perfect with the soft hints of it around the edges. East Frisian is traditionally enjoyed with cream and rock sugar from what I understand, but I only added milk and it was quite tasty. A touch of citrus and strooooong malt to welcome the new day. Yum!

Mike

Ooh, sounds nice! Thanks for the recommendation!

looseTman

Your welcome!

Mike

Thanks to both of you!! :)

Nightshifter

No I haven’t tried it, but now I need to. Thank you! :)

looseTman

Your welcome!

ashmanra

I think I read that Frisian teas are usually drunk with cream and sugar, and I think it is actually cream and not milk. I vaguely remember a reference to them not stirring it in but letting it hover as the “cloud in the tea.”

Nightshifter

Yeah, I thought they drank it with rock sugar and cream traditionally, but I only had milk. It still was tasty, but I am kind of obsessed with Scottish Morn and not such a fan of Darjeeling. :)

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drank Chinese Flower by Harney & Sons
13 tasting notes

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85

An uplifting black tea that has that little extra something that’s not possible to put into words. Drank my last sample of it tonight, golden. Smooth and bold enough to work but not harsh at all, it’s calming but invigorating at the same time. For me sugar really spiced it up and revved up the tea’s energy.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 5 OZ / 147 ML

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78
drank Wedding Tea by Harney & Sons
1320 tasting notes

I am frantically running about, drinking tea and throwing things about. I’m about to go on vacation, my first proper one in two years, and I am so excited.
But I have a lot of strategic packing to do (what tea do I pack!!!) and a lot of cleaning and other things that need to be done.
Enter the soothing teas.
Many, many thanks to Ost for being so generous with this sample. While I started out skeptical and a little afraid of the Wedding Tea, I’m now won over to its creamy and lemony charms.
A sipdown, I’m trying to pack in the sipdowns, so that I might be able to do a little tea shopping on my trip!

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