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Recent Tasting Notes
This sample came my way from VariaTEA.
I’m not a fan of Earl Greys to be honest. I don’t hate them, but I don’t enjoy them either. That being said, this one is not too bad. I certainly don’t need any for myself, but I happily sipped away as I read through the incredibly dull book I have to write a report on that’s due Wednesday.
The bergamot, which is what I do not like, was dulled sufficiently by I’m guessing the marshmallow. The base worked well and didn’t over- or underwhelm. Overall a decent cup.
Marshmallows and marshmallow leaf in tea intrigues me. I must find more.
I was happily surprised when I received this sample with my order last month because it was one I had considered getting but decided against because I will always want more caffeinated teas. The lower the caffeine the less excited I get.
When I’m deciding on caffeine free or low in caffeine tea I try and choose something my son and I will both like because he is the one who will most likely drink it. I like to dream that someday I will willingly choose to go caffeine free at night. When I do have something caffeine free it is always followed with a caffeinated tea or I’m drinking both at the same time.
I’ve got about a silly teaspoon left and will let my son have for after school tea because he will be the most sad to see it go. I do plan on getting more someday. This is our first cacao so I don’t have any to compare it to, all I know is my son and I both love mint and chocolate and fell in love with this at first sip. I loved that my son did not need sugar added to enjoy it*. I’m pretty sure it is the peppermint that helps there not be a need for sugar. I felt the cacao and peppermint had a nice balance, neither over powered the other. I’m not sure how the other cacao that I plan on trying in the future will go with no sugar.
*disclaimer: unlike most kids, he does not always like sugary things and normally only wants sugar in tea that is made into a latte.
Taking a supper break but need to head back soon. I’m overstaying my welcome at my own damn home haha.
The second I ripped open the parcel, I smelled strawberry. Strongly. I ordered both this and Strawberry Justice but I had a feeling that it was this one that was giving off the strong strawberry note.
I let this steep for upwards of half an hour whilst I was preparing my supper.
Seriously like melted Neapolitan ice cream. Each sip lends an initial sweet, strawberry cream note, then the cacao steps in afterwards. I’m glad the strawberry isn’t overly artificial. I mean, it is a bit, but not like chemicals per sé.
This is really neat. I look forward to try HI’s other cacao blends. I was able to try Tisano’s cacao tea at the Victoria tea fest last year, since Tea Sparrow was offering it, and I really liked it but passed on it. So it’s nice to revisit the whole idea of steeping cacao bean shells.
Whoa. This is hands down the best chocolate tea/tisane that I have ever had. Rich, thick, creamy, and a touch spicy. Just fantastic. I think the vanilla is contributing to the creaminess, but I can’t taste any vanilla flavor per se. It makes me terribly tea-sad that this blend is also giving me more tingling in my mouth and throat than should be happening. I think I’m allergic to some ingredient here, though I can’t figure out what it is. This would absolutely be in my must-have regular rotation otherwise.
This one comes to me courtesy of the ever-thoughtful MissB, who noticed that this was on my wishlist and included it with my stash sale purchase. Thanks!
I dunno guys….I really want to love this one, but it came out weak. I don’t know if it is a brewing issue or whether the milk I added affected it. It’s far from horrible, but nowhere as rich as I had expected.
I don’t remember my exact steeping, but I think it was about 2 tsp (to fill 2 travel mugs) and probably about 3 minutes each steep. As per usual, I split the first steep between the two mugs and did the same with the second steep. I do it like this to reduce having one mug of weaker tea.
I’ll try it again, soon, but without the milk, perhaps.
Many thanks to Cavocorax for sharing some of this with me. One hopes that I’ll get a better steep next time.
This tea smells a little bit like across between shortbread and scones with a touch of almond flour. The taste is subtle but pleasant. The base tea underneath is quite sweet, with a touch of astringency. The initial flavour note was kind of like a powdery shortbread cookie, followed a by a touch of almond extract and assert note that reminds me of licorice or perhaps stevia (I haven’t had it for a while). Mostly reminds me of shortbread with a touch of almond extract. Thanks to Dexter3657 for the chance to try this limited edition tea.
~ahem. BANDERSNATCH BUMBLEYSOCKS! It’s *&^%$%& snowing! And I have to go to work to rescue some bacteria. I was supposed to do a whole lot of science, but I won’t be able to spend 3-4 hours there without getting stuck.
Anyways. This tea is delightful. Not too much ‘blergamot’ as Sil says. It’s nice and sweet with that marshmallow flavour. This is definitely an earl grey I can get behind!
I actually forgot how much I like this one, especially compared to other teas of theirs where the ickiness of the base really shows through. (Sorry guys. I really don’t like your base tea!)
I totally had this because Amariel did. :)
I added a tiny bit of sugar and a splash of almond milk.
Sadly, I’d rather have hot chocolate. The texture just isn’t there. Maybe steeping it directly in almond milk? But that seems like so much work right now.
Smells divine, didn’t live up to the promise.
(10 min at boiling)
Thanks so much for this one, MissB! Herbal Infusions is this new intriguing tea company that I probably shouldn’t know about. haha. I just wish they would list the ingredients in their teas. The leaves here are different – there are two types of green tea I think. The fragrance seems like marzipan but it isn’t in the flavor at all. It’s a nice buttery green but it seems like the other green tea could be a tiny bit more vegetal with a refreshing cherry flavor. The cherry subtle but any more and it might take on a fakey flavor. I was craving cherry today. (I think I have teas for many craves I have… which is great because I don’t usually have it in the actual flavor.)
Exploring more of my teas from Cavocorax tonight, and this one, being caffeine free, won. I’ve seen a lot of reviews on it, so it piqued my curiosity. I used 2 heaping tsp to 10 oz or so of water, and let it steep at least 5 minutes, but it was likely longer…I just didn’t time it. I think I could probably go for a longer steep next time, though this was tasty, if not a little bit weak. I did add a small amount of sugar and some dark chocolate milk…I think the milk made me only taste the milk, and not the tea, but I’m not sure. Will try with regular milk at a later time.
I’m not sure how to rate this one yet…I like it, but I’m not sure I love it, yet I love the aspect of something chocolatey and caffeine free (or at least low caffeine for later in the evening. I really am trying to stick to my reduced caffeine, and trying to keep the caffeine to the morning and mid-afternoon hours only.
So I think I’ll leave the rating off for now, moreso because I need to think more about it, and maybe have more of this and try tweaking it some first.
This is the last of yesterday’s backlog I’m going to be able to squeak in a write up for, at least for today. I need to go get ready for my interview and eat something. Still, I made a nice(ish) dent in it!
I finished this off quickly because I could see the sipdown potential and was not worried about hoarding it. The last was prepped in a timolino to allow for the little extra bit of leaf, and I mixed in some milk just like I had pondered doing earlier this week.
I was actually less impressed this time around and thought this mug worth taste rather burnt/bitter, and almost had unwelcome notes of cinnamon. Despite maintaining a “cookie like” taste, this was not so delicious and the milk did nothing to help at all. I finished the whole thing in the hope that by the time it cooled down a little it’d be better (just slowly sipping at it in the mean time), but it never did and in hindsight I think I should have just dumped it and saved myself some time.
I’m going to lower my rating.
Sip down. It was good but I still like Bayswater’s Chocolate Macchiato and Crème Brulee blends a lot better. This one’s a little thin in comparison. No nuts. It does, however, kind of taste like an iced coffee when you drink it with some cream and let it cool down a bit.
Poor Steepsterites, getting over a week’s worth of sipdowns in one shot. I promise I’m done!
This tea is a nice treat. It satisfies the need for something sweet, without actually being truly sweet. Tricky, tricky. I love the graham-ness. I said last time I would consider rotating this one in, and this time around I ordered a sample rather than a full 50g. I need to remember next time to just bite the bullet and get 50g.
Update: Oh yes, I’ll definitely need more. I finished off my cup far too quickly, without even realizing it, then stared longingly into my empty mug.
J is working overtime tonight until 2am. That means I need to get more done. I always work better when he’s not here to be a distraction. :P
The flavours I want to add are never options. I shall send a third flavour email now.
This sample comes from VariaTEA.
I’m a little confused why Santa’s Milk and Cookies has maple leaf sprinkles in it, to be honest. Like – sprinkles is fine, but why maple leaf sprinkles? It’s not like the flavour is abundantly maple or anything. I guess Canada has been doing their publicity stunt thing about Santa being a Canadian Citizen/getting Canadian Citizenship but I highly doubt that was the thinking or logic.
Taste wise, this wasn’t bad, but it was’t good either. It actually tasted very familiar but I couldn’t place where from which bugged me just a little bit. There was a bit of cookie taste, but not really anything too impressive. Maybe some vanilla? I’ll try it with milk next time and see if that helps, I guess.
This is awesome. Chocolate-y and decadent and just seriously yum.
A delicious dark chocolate flavor (want milk chocolate, just add a splash of milk!) The mint doesn’t overpower this blend and I like that. It’s a cool, crisp minty flavor that complements the chocolate.
Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2014/01/11/mint-cacao-herbal-tea-from-herbal-infusions/
This tea was really calling to me and when I opened it and smelled the familiar strawberry scent I love so much, I was excited to have a cup. Unfortunately, after steeping for 20 minutes, this got dumped. The strawberry flavor was hidden underneath the cacao and cacao is really not for me. I am officially giving up on it and letting go to the hope that one day I will enjoy it again.
I ordered a sample of this one in my Herbal Infusions order. I’m not huge on chais, but I’ve been working on coconut chais slowly. They are actually coming along quite well.
The water fizzed when I poured it in my mug to steep. Hehe. It definitely smells chai-like. With creaminess. I’m getting a bit obsessive over creaminess in my teas.
Holy crow. I may have oversteeped this because, hello astringency (1.5 tsp for 3 minutes), or perhaps boiling water wasn’t the answer. It’s still piping hot, so maybe I’ll take another sip in a few minutes when it’s had more of a chance to cool.
Also, I finally got to go pick up my ring after 2 weeks. Yay! While I was out I got 4 swaps/shares in the post. Hopefully you all enjoy your teas Aimee Popovacki, Angrboda, Roswell Strange, and VariaTEA!
Update: I dumped out that cup. No time for astringency! This time around I tried 1.25 tsp for 2.5 minutes at less than boiling.
This attempt is definitely less astringent. The coconut isn’t really present, perhaps only in a creaminess dimming the spicy chai-ness.
Alright you guys. This tea is awesome, but I want to comment on Herbal Infusions in general in this note. Feel free to skip right over if this doesn’t interest you. :)
My first order with HI a few months ago went over very smoothly. I placed the order, got the email confirmation, and a day or two later, got the shipping notification. The teas arrived within an appropriate amount of time. I was a happy camper.
I ordered again in late January and after ~2 weeks I still hadn’t received a shipping confirmation nor my teas in the mail. I spoke with a couple people here who mentioned similar problems. I emailed them and was provided with an explanation and the promise the teas would be shipped out the next day. I received my teas yesterday, so they were shipped out quickly after the email. From the date of the order to receiving the teas was near to a month, which irritated me slightly, but it wasn’t something I couldn’t get past. I weighed out my Cacao and SCC this morning because I found it strange 50g could fit in one bag, whereas before I had received 2 bags of 25g each. When I weighed each bag I found that the tea inside was ~40g rather than 50g. I emailed HI again, and I have to say, they were incredibly quick replying and explained that the tea had been being weighed at their cacao supplier versus with them, and they’ve now fixed it so that they weigh it with their own scale (they provided me with the scale accuracy) and that they would ship me a couple 25g bags of Cacao this afternoon.
I have to say, the order taking an age did bother me, however it was alleviated by the explanation they provided when I emailed about it. I was slightly irritated this morning as well when I discovered the tea weight was off, because who wouldn’t be? However, all in all, I have to say I’m happy with all the explanations provided in both instances, and the immediate response about the weight and offer to ship some Cacao off to me to make up for it.
Feel free to take what you want from this! Also, this tea is amazing! I have done an actual tasting note on it a short time ago, if you want to know about the tea itself haha.
I have read from other people’s notes to not expect a true vanilla cacao, but more of a spiced variety, so I was prepared for something different, but this…? Very strange, there was some sort of meat flavor in there that finally made me dump the mug, it was just not enjoyable. Really weird tea.
This one came in my Herbal Infusions order today.
The scent is pretty awesome. Warm creamiscle. I have to say the taste is more orange than cream. I wish there was more of a cream aspect to it because I adore creamy teas. My package of this specially says “Orange Lapacho/Vanilla”, but I’m not so sure I’m getting vanilla. I’ll update as I sip away.
On the upside, this lapacho type of tea is great! When I saw a comparison to rooibos/honeybush I was slightly concerned since I generally don’t play nicely with those, but there’s no bizarre medicinal taste here. Yay, lapacho!
P.S. Maybe orange is the flavour that works with these teas that I can get on board with? I loved L’Autome with orange and rooibos, and I’m enjoying this one with orange and lapacho. Hmm.
I think this might be my favourite of Herbal Infusion’s holiday teas after Marshmallow Snowflake Earl Grey. Although, that isn’t saying much because aside from Snowflake, I really wasn’t all that impressed. This one is not too bad though. It is very much like a diluted apple cider. Not much ginger, but the apple flavor is nice. This won’t be a restock but I am glad I have a few more cups worth thanks to the awesome MissB and the wonderful Cavocorax. Thanks girls :)
An interesting cup of tea. Not my favorite from Herbal Infusions, but, not bad either. The name … sort of suggested to me that it might be something like a s’mores, but there’s no chocolate to it which … I guess I’m wishing there was. Imagine that, huh? Me? Wanting chocolate? Ha!
I taste black tea, and it’s a mild, even tempered sort of tea. As the tea cools, I notice more and more of the graham notes. The coconut is off in the distance.
It’s tasty … it’s a bit more cookie-ish than it is s’mores-ish but the description didn’t mislead me … I allowed myself to be misled because of the graham in the name. That’s my fault, not the fault of the tea. It’s pretty tasty.
Thank you Cavocorax for sharing this tea. It is certainly very interesting. It smells sweet so I was not expecting the little kick of spiciness I got in my first sip. However, when I took a second to think about it, “fireside” should probably have given that away. I don’t mind spice but I don’t particularly enjoy drinking it tbh so this tea is just not for me. It was fun to try though.