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Herbal Infusions

Recent Tasting Notes

Ehh. I don’t know guys. This one is alright, but it’s nothing compared to Strawberry Cream. I’m not huge on mint anyway. Mint equates to sick for me. I’m picky about it in my regular teas. I forget where it came up now, but I hope they come out with a orange cacao. That would be awesome.

I had the best intentions to get 2-3 smaller assignments done tonight… then I discovered Vine, and more importantly “Dem White Boyz”. I felt old for not knowing what Vine was (I definitely got stuck at 20 and the last few years evidently just haven’t happened), but more importantly I spent the last hour watching the videos of these guys and laughing. Not productive school-wise, but awesome nonetheless.

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93
drank Vanilla Cacao by Herbal Infusions
932 tasting notes

When I want a Mexican Hot Chocolate, this is what I drink instead now. So delicious, knowing that’s exactly what this is (or, originated from), although the label – while authentic and correct, technically – is misleading. Had a lovely cup last night, and the smell alone lifted my spirits.

Flavors: Chocolate, Cinnamon, Vanilla

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 8 min or more 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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58
drank Sweet Almond by Herbal Infusions
1338 tasting notes

Great Canadian TTB

Thank you Sil for including a HI blend in the box. Their customer service is such a pain that it is nice to try their teas without having to go through them. This particular tea was really nothing special for me. It smelled more like almond than it tasted as I found it was only a touch nutty. Oh well.

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30

BOOOO! I join the hordes of people who say “nay” to this one. How on earth can something called Bailey’s anything be so bad? I did read some of the reviews prior to fixing this pot the way I like (with raw sugar and creamer) and I am thankful I did so. A few tentative sips was all I could manage. Yes, it is bitter! and not much minty. Maybe Bailey’s is not really THE Bailey’s we are all thinking of but some play on words or something.

Anyway, thank you to Dexter3657 who was probably spared tasting this one since she hates mint. No worries, you didn’t miss a thing!

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drank Cacao Tea by Herbal Infusions
4026 tasting notes

…aaand now it’s gone. thanks again to courtney for sharing a little bit with me so that i could reconfirm that i still like this, AND try out her LB + Cacao creation. Both are delicious and both make me want moar…naaaaaao! only i’m being good and trying to drink up more of my tea! Maybe i’ll treat myself to an order at the end of March if i can get through my old teas! old of course is relative since i only have 2 left from May 2013, 2 left from June 2013 and then i’m in to July 2013! Which was my goal for the end of March along with getting down to 140.

I feel like i’m making good progress lately while still enjoying my teas and not forcing anything with ANY of my goals. Tea is meant to be enjoyed and loved and help me relax so it can’t stop being all of that! :)

Final Count: 138

Fjellrev

That’s a great outlook, and I’ve been trying to do the same, rather than creating this never-ending race in my head to get through all of them. Slow down and enjoy. :)

But damnit, I want, no, need more cacao. Just trying to figure out with whom I should place an order.

Courtney

Good job Sil!

Fjellrev I’m running dangerously low on both Cacao and SCC, and I only got them in a few weeks ago. There are more in the mail now thank goodness. I may as well set up a standing order at this rate.

Fjellrev

Bahaha I know, right? Makes me wonder if I (or we) will ever get sick of them, though.

Courtney

I wonder that too, but then I have mornings like today where to scent of SCC wafting from the Timolino is so intoxicating, even the guy sitting near me commented on how amazing it was haha! I try with so many of my teas not to overdo it and “kill” them though.

Fjellrev

Oh yeah, the scent of SCC is incredible. I’m sure he couldn’t believe it was tea haha. Damn, I need to get on an order. Just talking about it makes me want more. :)

Sil

Must. Resist.

Courtney

Resistance is futile.

Fjellrev

If it weren’t for SCC, I’d automatically order with Tisano this very second. Yet they have rose… blargh. Number-crunching time soon.

Courtney

Haha, oh decisions. I don’t like rose so I’ll stick with HI. :P

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72

Sip down. Ech, I’m kind of glad, too. These last couple cups were rather dicey. I got the exact same scratchy feeling in the throat that others have mentioned.

I think the main reason why my first cup was pretty good was because it contained more orange slices in it (first cup = two slices, second = one, third = none). I think that gave this more oomph, and the orange was more harmonious with the creamy vanilla. Without the orange slice, this is a muted orange creamsicle with scratchy, peppery lapacho.

So that said, no reordering for me. If only this orange creamsicle were combined with a different, delicate base, it would be a winner.

Shelley_Lorraine

I’ve recommended this in the past, and maybe you already saw this recommendation, but the best orange creamsicle tea I’ve ever come across comes from Tumblewood Teas. A tiny, hardly known tea shop with an amazing orange creamsicle tea :)

Fjellrev

Thanks for the recommendation. It looks great, but I see they don’t ship outside of the States. But it’s all good!

Shelley_Lorraine

oh darn it, I forgot about that. I don’t currently have any on hand to share (just a small bit that I am hoarding) but if I get more, I can send you some :)

Sil

hmmm…. goes off to look

Sil

Cowboy Creamsicle?

Fjellrev

Yeah, that looks like the one. And thanks for the offer, Shelley!

FWIW, the best orange creamsicle tea I’ve had so far comes from a local-esque store (Janet’s Special Teas), called Dolce Orange. I’ll need to get more since I only had a sample and it was really good. :)

Sil

…..and send some to MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

Fjellrev

YOU KNOW IT, YO. I’ll need to bus up there and kick some Sidney ass. :D

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72
drank Graham Slam by Herbal Infusions
4026 tasting notes

courtney scoured my tea ratings and found a tea i hadn’t tried yet. Mostly i think she’s nuts since i’ve SEEEN how big a pain in the ass my tasting list is.. 1593 teas, over 160 pages. On the upside? I am not a picky swapper lol I think this one just reconfirms my feeling that HI’s black base just isn’t for me. The teas aren’t bad..but they all have this similar feeling to them, even when there is COCONUT! in them. Also, i think this tea confuses me a lot because when i think of graham…i think of smores. and this is not smores tea. also..coconut? that doesn’t seem right. BUT i did drink up a giant mug of this, so like i said…not BAD, just not deliciously wonderful :) Thanks courtney!

Courtney

Hehe. I tried so hard to find teas for you that you haven’t tried.

VariaTEA

I know the struggle well of trying to find teas to surprise Sil with. Luckily the local companies I had to send started with “C” so I could sort by company name and see what was tried pretty quickly.

Sil

that’s part of why i love it when i can get local company teas from ppl….i also have gotten in the habit of, instead of going page by page in ppl’s tasting notes. go in 3..then just change the URL to whatever page i want to jump to instead of steepsters 3 at a time thing…

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74
drank Absinthe Frost by Herbal Infusions
932 tasting notes

I think this is a sipdown, and I’ll pass along the little that’s left. While I do love white teas, and this one is quite sweet and unusual, it’s just not… shazaam POW kinda good, and with it being so rare, I think it’s best to share.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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93
drank Cacao Tea by Herbal Infusions
1086 tasting notes

This one is from MissB! Thanks so much! I knew I would love this sort of tea, since I saw someone call it Mexican hot chocolate. Though I’ve never actually tried Mexican hot chocolate, it seems like it would be my sort of thing. I steeped this cup for a VERY long time with just boiled water…. like 10-20 minutes. The chocolatier the better, I think! The flavor is addicting! It’s a dusty chocolate that fills up the entire mug. Unsweetened tough chocolate. It’s exactly my thing. There has to be SOME caffeine in here since it’s chocolate though, right? Especially if the chocolate dust is in the mug? I could drink a ton of this stuff. I would DEFINITELY choose this over hot chocolate since I wouldn’t have to worry about the sugar. Anyone on a diet who can’t go without their chocolate, this is the drink for you.

MissB

Oh, yay! It’s really tasty stuff. The Vanilla Cacao is, what I consider to be, a traditional Mexican hot chocolate, as it has the requisite and unusual spices. This one is still really, realyl good though. :) Glad you liked it!

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72

Awesome, I so happen to be drinking this at the same time as Sil but this is my first time trying it. The dry leaf, from memory, smells almost peppery somehow? Maybe it’s the base. And then there’s the classic orange creamsicle lingering in the background. Aside from the pepperiness, this smells promising.

I steeped it for around fifteen minutes. It’s tasty! Truly like an orange creamsicle, and the base is really mild. I’ve only had lapacho once before, a long time ago, when David’s came out with their Amaretto, so I don’t even now what to expect from the base.

I think I’d consider buying more after polishing off my sample. It’s quite true to its name. I have, however, read in the past about health risks involving lapacho but I’m sure it should be fine if you only drink it occasionally and/or are not pregnant.

Alright, Friday Night Library Times, focus on just that. I need to stop dilly-dallying on Steepster (and writing rants to the wrong people, hence making a total ass out of myself wink wink ). Ugh.

JustJames

very cool! lapacho and i get on well….

Fjellrev

Nice to see you drop by!

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85

I’m a little excited now…I just meant to get the teas out on the table for tomorrow’s packing up swap stuff..and uh 2 hours later all my packages are bundles up and just need addresses before they’re ready to go out! It also means that i’m now in a great place to have a bunch of sipdowns tomorrow bwahahaha! which is good since i added 3 teas to my cupboard tonight.

I brewed this one up and sadly, forgot about it for an hour…DO NOT DO THAT! it makes it taste not as good. lol I really wanted cacao..but i only have enough for a small cup and that’s being saved for tomorrow…

Courtney

When I get in my fresh infusion of Cacao I can send a bit more. :)

Sil

haha i need to just place an order…but i’m trying SOOOOO hard to hold off on orders until after terri’s box gets here. lol

VariaTEA

Sil, do they still have their shop in Toronto? Ordering from them is so horrible that I am planning to just go to the store when I move home and buy my Strawberry Justice there. However, I am not entirely sure their store still exists.

keychange

Haha sil…don’t be so confident about those numbers dropping…;). Just wait and see.

OMGsrsly

I don’t think their store still exists, VariaTEA. Also: It’s pretty bad that people are putting off buying from them because ordering is horrible. :/

Fjellrev

I’ve only ordered from them once. Would you all say that customer service has been consistently bad or has gotten even worse over time?

Sil

Key change…..bah! Lol it will go down! Even if it’s only for. A week!

VariaTEA – their retail location closed, after my 3 attempts to actually get to tHe store and have it be open. Every time I went it was closed, even though it was during their opening hours… For random reasons.

Cavocorax

Apparently they hired help or something a few weeks ago, so maybe service has gotten better? I’ve ordered twice with them. The first was Black Friday and it took at least 2 weeks for my order to ship. The second order was in January, I think, and it took about a week for it to ship. There’s not much communication from them…

VariaTEA

I called and emailed them multiple times and still have heard absolutely nothing back. First because I got an order and it didn’t have the Banana berry rooibos I ordered. Then I contacted them to ask if they wanted me to return the duplicates of the Cyber Monday teas they sent. Then, in my most recent order, I got ahold of them by email and they were supposed to add a sample of Graham Slam to my order which they didn’t (and I still don’t know if they charged me for it or not because of my credit card issue last month).

Terri HarpLady

I still haven’t had a chance to try this one…

Sil

VariaTEA – awful… :)
Terri – Sounds like a free sipdown for meeee! ;)

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90

Another sip down. I quite enjoyed this one too, but it may come in third place if I were to rank the cacao teas, with the original and Strawberry Cream basically tied for first. Would I get more? Maybe, probably. It’s an amazing chocolate mint, no doubt, but I would have liked more mint, really. Maybe add more peppermint? But at that point, you might as well just get the original and add peppermint leaves whenever you want.

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45
drank Graham Slam by Herbal Infusions
757 tasting notes

Sip down, and so glad for it. I tried to pay extra attention this time, both in the dry leaf and flavour itself, to these dessert notes others are talking about. The dry leaf still smells kind of weird to me. If I concentrate, I can get a bit past the stale smell and detect a hint of creaminess, but it still smells off.

No change in the flavour either. Maybe I can detect a hint of custard, but again, it’s stale and almost dusty to me.

You know what enhances the flavour? I’m crazily double-fisting teas right now, with David’s Blue Lagoon by my side too. I noticed that when I take a sip of Blue Lagoon, then take a sip of this, this tastes more desserty. Hilarious. But I think it’s just the fruity notes from Blue Lagoon lingering.

Ok, done for good.

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80

Thank you Courtney for this sample.
I received a lovely tea swap package this morning from the wonderful Courtney and this tea was the first that I could smell. It is absolutely amazing! Super sweet and strong strawberry with a creamy vanilla undertone. It smells like the centre of one of those strawberry chocolates you get from a box (like Roses). I could sniff this tea all day. If it was rated by a pure sniff factor then this would be a ten. Seriously, I want to eat it! Funny really as the blend itself looks a little dull and dry, but then again looks can be deceiving.

The steeped scent is much more chocolatey and resembles Neapolitan. It’s also lost the sweet strawberry and had instead turned rather sour. It also tastes very Neapolitan, at first sip the chocolate comes through with a little sourness before being sweetened by a strawberry and finishing with a creamy vanilla like after taste. I’ve had a few Neapolitan teas before so I have some means for comparison. This one offers all three flavours nicely at the start but after half a cup or so the chocolate becomes dominant and the sour overpowers the sweet. So in the end it’s somewhat..savoury…but also still rather tasty.

I like this tea, it’s not quite as it smells but it is nice and I would happily try this again. Would consider buying it from time to time if I could for when I’m in a sweet tea mood. :)

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 250 ML
Courtney

The scent is intoxicating. I’m glad you enjoyed it.

Fjellrev

Yay! We have another fan of this one.

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I came to school bright and early today, a full 7 hours before I have my classes. It’s nose to the grindstone for the next 20 days before I leave for paradise. The scent of this tea is wafting out from the Timolino and it is intoxicating. Part of me doesn’t want to drink it, just so I can smell it for as long as possible. This tea may get permanent cupboard status.

I’m taking a quick break to write this note, and to do some math. I love quantifying things. Everything actually. I average 75 hours per term per class in both lecture and lab, and for spring histology, the amount of time I’ll spend in scheduled lecture and lab is 108 hours. HEYO.

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68

thanks for sharing this one with me courtney I’ve had the mint cacao before and wasn’t overly impressed. With this one i found that it was a whole lot of cacao tea…with hints of strawberry that would pop up now and then. So i subtracted a few points for not being as strawberry-licious as i wanted it to be. but it was still good and still tasty and when i DID get the strawberry hints, i was happy :)

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more
Courtney

I was so impressed with myself for finding a tea to sneak in that it appeared you hadn’t tried haha!

Fjellrev

How long do you usually steep the cacao teas for, Sil? I steeped this one for > 30min and I got a lot of strawberry. But maybe we just differ. :)

Sil

uh this one steeped for over 20 mins..i lost track of time haha

Fjellrev

That’s my Sil. :D These are the perfect tisanes to walk away from and lose track of time. Like I was saying earlier, I left the Mint Cacao for five freaking hours today, and I’d say it benefited from it haha.

VariaTEA

I had the same problem. I steeped it for almost 45 minutes and got cacao and no strawberry. It makes me really sad too because it smelled so amazing.

Fjellrev

Wow! I’m really lucky then.

Courtney

Fjellrev I’m with you.

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90

Soooo, last cacao tea to try, and I accidentally left this to steep for five hours. It was still hot when I opened up my Timolino which is a bonus.

This definitely gives Della Terra’s Shamrocks & Shenanigans a run for its money in terms of being an exquisite chocolate mint tea. Hmm, this one is more chocolatey, obviously, but not as minty as I would have expected. I especially anticipated a mountain of mint considering how long I steeped this for.

I’m tempted to say that I like this even more than Shamrocks. I need to do a side-by-side comparison. Because I’m cuckoo for cocoa… mint teas.

Nxtdoor

I’m gonna be so bummed if DAVIDs ever discontinues Read My Lips. I’m having it right now and man, it’s so delicious.

TheTeaFairy

I remember ordering Shamrocks a while ago after reading your raving reviews. It’s one of very few DT I still enjoy very much:-)

Fjellrev

Oh yeah, RML is a classic. I highly doubt they would. They’d be stupid for it!

Aww, I’m glad you like it, TheTeaFairy. I’m in the same camp. It’s one of the very few of theirs that I still enjoy.

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drank Cacao Tea by Herbal Infusions
4026 tasting notes

courtney both rocks my world and may have ruined LB for me for a little while. heh. She sent along some cacao for me since HI is annoying me in their lack of consistency with their service…so that i could try her receipe of adding this to LB.

So this morning i did a 1-1 ratio of this + LB in my travel mug for work…fogot about it…and sometime this afternoon took my first sip. dear.god. SOOOOO good! it enhances the deliciousness of LB and makes it a totally decadent treat tea… I may need to keep this in my back pocket for when i’m having a really bad day…though i’d have to get lots more cacao tea.

thanks a bunch courtney!

Fjellrev

Cripes, that must be fantastic. Double damn.

Sil

it’s REALLY delicious. She sent me cacao specifically so i could try this…so good.

Lynxiebrat

What is LB?

Courtney

Mwuahaha!

Sil

LB = laoshan black from verdant :)

ifjuly

i am so trying this—i was bummed that when i restocked LB it wasn’t as chocolatey as i remembered it being. thanks for the tip!

Sil

it’s aaalllll courtney!

Courtney

I’m so glad you liked it. :)

Amariel

OOH, I might try mixing the last of mine in with LB.

Cavocorax

Really? OMG. I wish I had more cacao to try that with!

Lynxiebrat

Giggles you know Laoshan Black was what I 1st thought of when I saw the initials LB.

Sil

cavo..yes..sadly it’s enough to make me want to place an order with HI…though i may see if they’re downtown on sunday….

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45
drank Graham Slam by Herbal Infusions
757 tasting notes

Oh dear, my palate doesn’t understand this one. The dry leaf smells off to me, like stale starch.

And it pretty much tastes like that too. I’m not sure if it’s the base with which I am having a problem, like others have, or if it’s the flavouring, or what. Even half and half won’t save it. It’s like a really old tea bag. No spices, no vanilla, no coconut, nada. I had a cup last night and it was the same thing.

One more cup and we’ll see if it’s a 3/3 stale fail.

VariaTEA

I have wanted to try this one because of all the positive reviews so it is a little comforting to see that I may not necessarily be missing out on something amazing.

Fjellrev

I have enough left for one cup so if you’d like to still try it, I can happily send it your way. It’s so odd, this one. I feel like my palate is broken or something.

VariaTEA

Oh no. Haha. And thank you but it is okay. I will be picking up so more Strawberry Justice eventually so I will just toss a sample in then.

Anna

Well, you know what slam means in Swedish…

Fjellrev

Haha good luck on it then, VariaTEA! Strawberry Justice is that good, eh? Maybe I’ll rip open that packet next. :)

Shudder subliminal messaging right there, Anna.

Courtney

Aw I love this one. That’s too bad.

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75

Sip down! Not going to miss it. Still cravin’ the original and Strawberry Cream ones. :)

Amariel

I have a small amount of the original left. Would you like it? I just find it too thin.

Fjellrev

Don’t worry about it! I was going to gather some monies together to make another order sometime.

Amariel

Ok, I’ll drink it, but if someone wants it more than me, it’s theirs.

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75

Nice EG, not much bergamot (which I like a lot of ) so a little disappointing. The little snowflakes are cute! I’m not sure exactly what the marshmallow is supposed to taste like in tea. I used my regular, old fashion tea strainer since there wasn’t enough for my Breville. I boiled the water in the Breville so I would have the right temp. First cup good, added monk’s fruit as my sweetener. (didn’t go well with my lemon pepper tuna, but what would) I did a resteep. OK, I almost did the resteep right. I heated the water but forgot there was no tea in the Breville basket. When it was hot I thoughtlessly poured the water into my cup and added sweetener. Then I looked at the cup… my goodness this looks weak. Duh! It was a cup of sweetened water. The tea leaves are in the other dispersion basket. LOL! I then poured the water onto the leaves. Problem solved! :D

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Sami Kelsh

Mmm, sweetened water ;)

carol who

And hey, don’t forget… it was nice hot sweetened water :)

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48

This is… weird. It smelled like soap to me coming out of the bag, and all I saw was rooibos in the blend. I had one sip and said.. no thanks. The HUGE floral pieces were also a deterrent, and this is going in the swap box. My daughter said, as she had some, “This is surprisingly and weirdly spicy”. Agreed, and I normally love spicy.

Flavors: Flowers

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 8 min or more 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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75

I let this steep in my Timolino for what, two hours? I lost track of time. As soon as I found out that this also has spices in it, I immediately got a hunch that this would be a lot like Yogi’s Choco Aztec, which I actually quite liked. I went through a good two boxes while I was living in Linköping because I was too lazy to venture out to tea shops and stuck with grocery store stuff there.

And this basically is that except enhanced, both in cocoa and spice flavours. Predominantly chocolate and cinnamon, the flavour profile truly does reflect that of a Mexican hot chocolate, minus the chili heat.

I like it, but I think I’m all burnt out of affection for this type of flavour profile. A local company which specializes in matcha and matcha mixes even offers an Aztec hot chocolate mix which tastes almost the same. So essentially, it’s been done over and over.

As for the vanilla, it’s virtually non-existent. They ought to rename this blend like Aztec Cacao or Xocolatl or something.

Anna

Is there even a tea shop in Linköping?

Fjellrev

Yeah, there’s one in Stora Torget called Tebladet.

http://tebladet.se/

Almost every time I’d walk by, I’d be tempted to walk in, but their blends kind of sounded uninspiring on their site. But it does look like they expanded their line.

Anna

Haha, classic Swedish (= German) blends! I found this one too when I googled: http://teboden.com/te-2

Anna

If you didn’t have such a refined palate, I would seriously send you samples of all the Sweden-bought teas I have, so you could see what you missed (nothing).

Fjellrev

Oh, weird how I missed that one. Guess I never passed it. And it’s ok, really! Haha, I used to try the teas in the bulk bins at Hemköp and ICA. Not sure what happened. I seemed to stop bothering after I tried the infamous Söderblandning.

Anna

Unnnggghhh, it’s the WORST. But hey – not as bad as Uppsalablandning. Just uergh.

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75

Thank you to both MissB and Cavocorax who sent this my way. My first cup was amazingly delicious but all subsequent cups have slowly made me lose interest. I still have a fair bit more so hopefully those cups are better.

Tastewise, this is very, VERY heavy on the ginger and just a hint of apple as opposed to my first cup which was all apple with a dash of ginger to warm everything up.

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