Hugo Tea Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
Part 2 of my Hugo Breakfast Blend comparison…
Whew, much better! The leaf material in this one was much darker, long, & twisty. That alone made me feel better. The resulting tea was a deep mahogany. The formula:
1 tsp + 8oz X 4min
Sweet, smooth, malty, with elements of chocolate, red wine, caramel, & even a twist of orange. The texture is smooth & full, with a bright tingle on the tip of the tongue. It’s also much easier on the tummy!
Full steam wins over Organic Morning’s Journey, without a doubt!
Thanks to TeaTiff for sharing a generous sample of this tea!
I wanted to compare Hugo’s Organic Morning Journey, which is no longer available, the their replacement, Full Steam. Thanks to TeaTiff, now I can!
I had just enough of this tea for one final steeping, so I brewed them side by side. I had assumed the Full Steam was the replacement to OMJ, as if they would be similar blends. As soon as I took a look at the leaf, I knew they weren’t going to be the same at all. OMJ has a high level of Darjeeling, so much so that once it was wet, the leaf was mostly green.
For this tea, the directions call for 1T + 8oz X 3 – 4 min.
This resulted in a dark brown cup. I used to really love this tea, but today the cup was literally screaming, “Wake up!!!”, and I did!
Bright, Astringent, bitter, floral, & lemony tart.
I can’t drink another drop until I eat!
It’s funny that I previouslly enjoyed this tea, but in comparison to the FS, I don’t know why!
And gratefully, it’s a sipdown! 329!
Man, this is some good tea. The blend on this is just fantastic. And with the addition of some cream – madly good.
This is a dangerous sipdown. I have sworn off buying any more for a loooong time – I don’t have a problem with having a large stash of tea, but I don’t need to spend any more money on tea. This one will make it hard to stick to that vow since I can just pick up a tin locally. Such a problem to have. :)
This tea is suited “For Tiger-Taming, Early Mornings, and Getting on with it.”
Yes please! I definitely need some of that – we are going to switch our drivers license over and start the process of transferring the car, and maybe get Ontario health cards too… Uugggh. I hate bureaucracy stuff. I totally need some tiger taming.
This tea helps me feel a little prepared for the day; it’s rich and dark and beautiful. OMG. I get malt, and honey and maybe even a little bit of a spice, like nutmeg or cinnamon that adds a little but of sweetness against all this malt.
Wow. It’s incredible.
Ms. Theresa has decided our next tea drinking protocol will be to linger over various tea varietals, to determine which ones are worthy to be in our cupboard. She described it as an Olympics of teas. We’re starting this today, with a couple of different pathways, the first one being “Breakfast Blends”.
The protocol here is that we’ll be drinking a different breakfast blend for awhile, as the first cup of the day. There is no rhyme or reason to the order of teas drank, or anything like that, we just want to try all of our breakfast blends, & there are several, enjoying each one for what it is, culling out any we don’t really care for (as if there will be any), & if any of them stand out as superlative, they will be elevated to some level of glory, although that may or may not really happen, LOL.
This one is interesting, in that it seems to be a little different every time I have it. Sometimes I adore it, & other times it is a little too bright. Today it’s been very satisfying: A bold bass, a grapey brightness, a little more astringent than I tend to like, but with an earthy midsection as it cools that I love. I don’t have much left, & I still really want to compare it to the newer version. I guess I need to do something about that.
“What’s in your cup?” This morning it’s a favorite – Organic Morning’s Journey. Today I brewed 1 tbsp. (5g) / 8 oz. / 205*F / 4 min. and found it to be SO ROBUST that I added more water. Then I remembered, I typically steep 5g at: 3, 4, 6, & 8 minutes. It pays to check one’s stepping notes before brewing. (In my defense, it was the first cup of the morning.) This black tea is the definition of full-bodied!
I’m going to miss Organic Morning’s Journey. Since this cup puts us half way through our 4 tin stash, of which there is no more, I’m genuinely interested to see how Hugo Tea’s Full Steam compares.
Sometimes you drink a tea sample, and only have enough to enjoy two cups, and then poof! It’s gone. And months go by, and even a year goes by and you’ve had hundreds of cups of different teas in between, and yet, you still find yourself thinking about this cup. This one that got away.
And then you email the company to see about ordering something similar and is there a way to make the shipping to Canada more affordable, and they reply back that they can offer you a custom black tea package deal and throw in that tea that got away since they can see you’re such a huge fan of it…
And it finally arrives!
And the tins are beautifully packaged and the box smells amazing. There’s no question which tea to try first. And it’s just as good as you remember! Your memory doesn’t fail you. Everything is so amazing!!!
(And I highly, highly recommend ordering from Hugo Teas due to their incredible customer service. I did the entire transaction through Facebook and they were very quick/responsive, as well as adding several dashes of humour.)
Still feeling a bit stuffy, blah, and icky. I can’t taste my Premium Silky Green so I made this to go with lunch since son said he would like green tea instead of lemonade. (Let me squeal with excitement here over that statement. The two eldest kids used to HATE all tea including sweet iced tea and now they ask for it for Christmas and birthdays!)
This one had the guts to go with our meal and not disappear. It is also a SIPDOWN, which is probably good since it is now just over a year old. I am beginning to think that it is time to seriously pare down my cupboard and keep a small number of dearly loved teas…and then I get on here and find ten more I want to try.
Yes, this tea is no longer available.
Yes, I still have some, LOL.
Yes, I want to get Hugo’s newer black breakfast blend.
No…sigh…I have not done it yet…
I need to do it before I drink all of this, just for comparison’s sake.
So, I accidentally oversteeped this today, which really brings out the Ceylon aspect. I need to not do that next time.
Thanks Sil for another interesting sample.
This one is interesting, but more of a miss for me. I was expecting a bold breakfast blend, and this is more gentle and subtle. I don’t think it’s really bad…. just not what I was expecting. It’s ok, but nothing special for me. I don’t think the flavors are jumping out at me. It’s just too mild for my tastes. That’s ok, can’t love all of em… :))
The lovely Nicole sent this to me and I figured having both Hugo blacks in the house was a good excuse for a sipdown and a comparison :)
I prefer this version to the mornings journey, if only because this has more oomph. I only steeped it for 3 mins because I didn’t bother to look anything up. Haha. This is malty and robust…it’s not bitter, it’s not astringent. There’s a flavour hidden in the brew that makes it different from your average every day malty cup. It’s somewhere between sweet and sour and makes my mouth tingle haha. Thanks so much for sharing Nicole!
This one hit the Sweet spot this morning. I thought it would be fun to compare this older version from Hugo tea with the new version. The orders one was se nt my way by Terri. The first time I had it there was a weird note to it….this time, it’s smooth And delicious with just a slight kick to it. There’s no bitter after taste and on the whole an enjoyable cup, though I won’t bemoan the fact that you can no longer get it. Just happy to have tried it and enjoyed it :)
just for cavo…. finishing off the day with a cup of this tea. :)
Terri was kind enough to send some of this my way and while i’ve been drinking this tonight i’ve been perplexed. I’m not sure how i feel about this tea. It’s smooth…and then there’s this weirdo mid taste and then i’m confused again. I like it..but it’s going to need another few cups for me to land on where i feel about this one. Still glad to be trying it out though!
Another tea I needed this morning!
Thank you Tyler!
I know this one is no longer available, & I do want to get some of the newer one, but it may be awhile, as I am short of funds. Luckily, I have enough tea here to last for the rest of my life. Although I’m sure there will be purchases made during the upcoming HoliDaze season.
Now, to my harp to practice for the choir rehearsal I have today at UMSL.
There we go. More leaf at 3 minutes is the sweet spot for a practically perfect cup for me. Upping the rating to reflect that. I don’t think I mentioned last time how pretty the dry leaf is. A wide range of colors – reminds me of a Darjeeling just from the look.
Malty, smooth, a bit dusty, dark and mildly sweet.
This needs to stay in my cupboard. It was a perfect tea to be the first one after a 20 hour fast so I could have some standard tests done. I seriously missed my tea all day today. Unfortunately I needed to get this done quickly and 4 in the afternoon was the first appointment. Which meant that I ate last at 8 pm last night. I missed tea more than food. I need help.
Now I’m working on a pot of this! It’s a very different, much brighter profile, than the double knit, but equally delicious. Of course, it’s no longer available, but Tyler’s new breakfast blend, Full Steam, is!
You can get some here: http://www.hugotea.com/
And check out this article, featuring Tyler & some other innovative young people: https://www.facebook.com/HugoTea/posts/534394656639739?comment_id=3244126¬if_t=comment_mention
Okay, so I was bad on Saturday and grabbed a tin of this as well while I was at Green Acres. :)
The scent about knocks you out when you open the first lid on the tin. Talk about strong bergamot! And it doesn’t let up after steeping. If you like your bergamot in your face, this is the blend for you. It’s not harsh, but easily might become so if oversteeped. I hope this tin wasn’t an over bergamotted bunch because if this is consistently representative of the Grey-Line, it could well become a staple Earl in my cupboard.
I do wish there was more information about what kind of tea is in this blend. Ah, well. Maybe someone with a more educated palate than I can identify. :)
I finally saw Hugo Tea in a local shop. I had stopped by this place before looking for it and there wasn’t any. When I stopped in for another reason a few days ago, they had a whole line of it on the shelf!
This is pretty good. Strong and warm. I have tried it with 2 different steeping times – 4 minutes and 2 1/2 minutes. At 4 minutes, it got a bit harsh, in my opinion. At 2 1/2 minutes, it was good, but maybe a bit lacking? I think have yet to find the sweet spot with this one. Maybe more leaf at 2 1/2 minutes. I like my teas hefty. :)
Organic Morning’s Journey Black Tea – 2012
Per The 2012 Hugo Tea 2.6 oz. (75 g) tin:
“Behold friends! This is the 100% organic black tea blend you’ve been seeking. Morning’s Journey is my private blend of three black teas from three countries. This loose blend holds unparalleled balance and flavor, ready to sustain your adventures—no compass or knapsack required. Keep it close and brew it often.”
Blend of three black teas from three countries:
Fellow Steepster members have guessed Assam, Ceylon, Darjeeling, and perhaps Pu-erh. (However, since the teas come from 3 different countries, it can’t contain both Assam & Darjeeling.)
Per Hugo Teas (from review comments):
• “We hope it wouldn’t ruin your day if we told you that there isn’t any pu’erh in our Morning’s Journey—rather, there are only 100% Organic black teas here. But there are certainly pu’erh-like flavors.”
• “It does have darjeeling in it! Nice work! The other two teas are Yunnan and Ceylon :-). Happy Tea-Drinking.”
liberteas has an excellent review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2012/11/02/organic-mornings-journey-black-tea-from-hugo-tea/
“Amount: 1 Tbsp / 8oz water Temp. 205*F (96*C) Time 3-4 min.”
1 Tablespoon – 5g (My Weigh Durascale D2 660), 8-oz filtered water (TDS: 72 PPM), heated to 205*F, brewed with a Finum tea basket in tea mug without sweeteners, milk or cream. Three steeps: 3, 4, 6, & 8 minutes.
Fragrance: Woody, warm, relaxing, pleasant, and moderately-strong
Dry leaf: Color – A few gold tips with amber, green, & dark chocolate brown < 1mm long twisted wiry leaves and small pieces.
Liquor: Clear, moderately dark copper
Aroma: Wonderful, relaxing, with a distant hint of cinnamon
Infused Leaf: Color – Mostly milk chocolate and some rustic brown leaves with some larger pieces of green leaves
Body: Full-bodied for the initial infusion and the first re-steep. Subsequent re-steeps require longer infusion times and result in a medium-bodied cup.
Caffeine: Invigorating without being aggressive like Irish-Breakfast can be.
I’ve been enjoying multiple cups of the Organic Morning’s Journey recently. The flavor profile includes malty-ness, muscatel, and a mild caramel notes. Organic Morning’s Journey has a natural mild sweetness combined with a creamy smoothness that provides a mellow and relaxing yet invigorating cup without any hint of bitterness tartness, or astringency. This is one of the very few teas that my wife will substitute for her all-time favorite tea – Earl Grey. Very well done Hugo Teas! It’s easy to see why this was such a highly-rated tea!
How will your 2013 Full-Steam Black Tea compare to Organic Morning’s Journey?
Next week is sure to be crazy (the university I work at starts classes, and I also start my class!) so I used this morning to cook some things for the week so that we have food on hand — black bean stew, Indian lentil stew, German potato salad, mini meatloaves with pasta, roasted hot peppers — one less thing to worry about! I’ll only need to made a few side dishes. I also made some mustard and BBQ sauce.
My reward? A nice sit down with a giant cup of this tea. It’s magical. So smooth, malty, raisiny-sweet and flavorful. Invigorating without being strong like your typical breakfast tea. I’m having some milk and sugar with it and it’s comforting and delicious this way. Those of you that have been around for awhile — I do believe it has an echo of Thomas Sampson to it :)
Many, many thanks to ashmanra for this tea!!!