international house of teaEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
Got this as a free sample. Seeing how much I like Lemon Myrtle I figured I’d like this one since it’s lemon balm with spices. Indeed so! Lemon Balm is less lemony than myrtle and more herbaceous. The mild spices are a nice touch too. Overall it’s a nice, relaxing blend. I may repurchase (or just buy lemon balm on it’s own) but I have a LOT of lemon myrtle to use up first (plus I want to dwindle my collection a bit more first. I’m at 30 teas, I’d like to get below 25 before buying anything new (unless something comes out from DAVIDs on limited edition…you all know how they are with reeling customers in with the constant new & limited edition teas).
Flavors: Herbaceous, Lemon, Spices
Haven’t gotten to reviewing this. I’ve owned it since Christmas time which Is nearly 4 months ago!
Supposedly, this is supposed to be a mild aphrodisiac. Honestly, I cannot attest to whether or not that aspect of this tea works or not-haven’t really noticed a difference in my libido. However, what it tastes like is peppermint in the foretaste and herbaceous (prob from the blackberry + strawberry leaves and other ingredients) in the rest of the tea. Overall it’s alright. Dunno if I would repurchase based on taste.
Flavors: Herbaceous, Peppermint
Had this in a to go cup after picking up more echinacea. Definitely steeped this tea longer than I would have liked (15-20 min as opposed to less than 10). Therefore the woody rooibos taste was powerful. However, I still picked up almond and sweet vanilla flavors too. Yummmm. I think I will purchase this one in the future (when I get my cupboard down to less than 30 teas)! And play around with steeping times + try this as a latte.
Flavors: Almond, Rooibos, Vanilla, Wood
The last green tea from the sampler pack. Interesting how this one is in a sampler pack yet it is not mentioned on the iHOT tea menu. Anywho, it’s a decent green tea. Not super sensitive to heat/steeping time/overleafing and has your basic grassy green tea taste. It doesn’t wow me, but I had no issue using it up. (Overall, I prefer green teas with a buttery or vegetal taste, like gyokuro or dragonwell)
This is the second gunpowder tea I tried (the first one being a sample from M&K’s tea shop. This tea is also a sample as well :)
First off, not that this is a sign of how “good” a green tea is, but I personally love how gunpowder can stand up to abuse. I’ve been drinking a lot of greens lately that require the lowest temp on my variable temp kettle (160F) and need to steep no more than 2min or else the astringency gets you. This one I did at 175F for 3 min and it could easily have stood for a bit higher temp or longer steeping time without astringency. This tea is bolder for a green and has a bit of a roasted/smokey taste (but not too much to upset my stomach, such as Hojicha). Altogether nice and does a good job of getting my day going.
I would seriously consider buying this tea again- especially as a weekday tea to throw in my travel mug, It stands up to higher temps + steeping times which are perfect for busy days and times where I don’t have a variable temp kettle. Plus this tea is inexpensive at $6/50g which is quite economical,
Flavors: Roasted, Smoke
Another tea from the sampler pack. Unfortunately, it seems like I received a lot of broken leaves and dust in my sample. Probably since it was a sample. Either way, when I scooped out tea to make my mug full I did get almost all whole leaves to try it out- nice.
This tea is one of my favourites from the sampler pack. It is not too prone to astringency, not too bold or weak, and very floral, sweet, and vegetal. I’m especially loving the vegetal aspect of this tea. Yum.
Unlike the Yunnan tea I just reviewed, this one is a re-purchase. The vegetal character does make it unique to me and this tea is good for multiple steepings. It is one of the most pricey teas from iHOT at $12.50/50g (only gyokuro and jasmine pearls are more expensive), but that’s the beauty of trying a sample first.
Flavors: Floral, Sweet, Vegetal
One of the teas from the sampler pack I got from iHOT. I’ve tried it several times now, actually just finishing up the last of the sample.
Let me just start off by saying how pretty this tea is. Because it’s tips all of the leaves are the same size and shape, almost reminding me of the look of fennel. The uniform look is really nice.Besides that though, the description of this tea is: “this green tea has a strong, spicy flavour, a hint of sweetness and an outstanding unique character.”. Personally, I do find this tea strong (I actually brew it for only 2min @ 160degree F otherwise there is astringency) but I do not find it is “spicy”. In the aftertaste it is a little sweet, though. Sadly though, I do not find this tea re-steeps well. I brew up two mugs at a time: one for me which has a stronger colour and flavour, one for my husband (his at 3min as opposed to two) and the liqueur is a LOT paler. That’s kind of disappointing.
So with that being said, I did enjoy this tea, but I dunno if I would repurchase. The taste isn’t unique to me and the tea is really prone to astringency, yet it’s not that great for multiple resteepings. This tea is pretty inexpensive so I think there would be other greens I would prefer over this one in that price range.
I find with fruit flavoured teas, a lot of the time they’ll SAY it tastes like a particular tea, but when you drink it it’s just vaguely fruit or sweet but distinctive. This blueberry rooibos does a pretty good job with it’s blueberry flavour. I suppose that’s what happens when you use dehydrated blueberries in your tea! I did enjoy it straight up, but I’m wondering how it’ll tasted iced as well. We’ll have to see!
Flavors: Blueberry, Floral, Rooibos
Mulberry Magic from DAVID’s tea is a staple for me. However, when I saw that iHOT sold mulberry leaves for $6.00/50g as opposed to about $10/50g for Mulberry Magic from DAVIDs, I knew I needed to try this out and be economical.
I noticed that the leaves are VERY long (some are about 2.5 inches!) and more straight than with mulberry magic. Even still, it brews up just like mulberry magic: dark, muddled green with a very floral, grass, and sweet flavour that has depth to it. Very nice. I always brew mulberry strong so I never noticed the macadamia nuts with Mulberry Magic, so this is a great substitute.
Flavors: Floral, Grass, Sweet
Good amount of bergamont flavouring in this rooibos blend. Yum. I think I like the Cream of Earl Grey rooibos blend better though. Still though- this tea is a good substitute for people like myself who cannot drink black tea but still like bergamot flavouring.
Flavors: Bergamot, Rooibos
I currently have 3 genmaicha teas in my collection but haven’t been drinking genmaicha lately! Luckily this is just a sample.
Not much to say- a nice roasted rice + popcorn flavour with the taste of fresh grass in the background. Nice. I hope to get a move on with this genmaicha teas soon..
Flavors: Freshly Cut Grass, Popcorn, Roasted
Not usually one for flavored greens, but since this is decaf I don’t really care. Made a pot of this for the hubs and I, then took some tea out of the pot for a cup (and brought some for a short evening shift too). A not too weak, not strong vanilla taste with the undertones of grass. Lovely. I find that straight, decaf green tea is not nearly as good as the straight, regular-caf stuff since the decaffeination process creates a strange taste, but adding the vanilla takes away that strange taste while still having the pleasant grassy undertones. I think this shall replace the straight decaf stuff I have!
Flavors: Grass, Vanilla
Finally used up my $50 gift card my husband got me for my bday (dec 14, so it’s been 3 months!). I’m really impressed with how much tea I got for $50. iHOT’s prices are so much better than most companies I’ve ordered from (example: most of iHOT’s rooibos teas are $5.75/50g instead of the avg $7.00/50g from DAVIDs) and they have great quality. Not to mention, I watched them fill up the bags of tea and I noticed they were giving me 60-70g for the price of 50g (they sell in denominations of 50g). What a deal and great customer service!
Anywho, I brewed this tea up for prob 8min, 2tsp of tea in 10oz of 200F water. Earl Grey Cream indeed! Bergamot and vanilla flavours are more prominent than the rooibos- which is hard to find in flavoured rooibos blends (especially vanilla). I want to try this as a latte. It’s so creamy I’m sure it would wok wondrously. I’ll have no probably drinking this one down!
Flavors: Bergamot, Creamy, Rooibos, Vanilla
Another tea from the husband for Christmas. I’m only supposed to have this when I’m sick, but I was doing a bit of shuffling with my teas and wanted to sample it.
I got a big bag of this! It’s so light and fluffy. I actually filled up one tin and still have 13 grams (1.5 cups!) in the bag! I’m actually looking to pass it on to anyone who is interested? There’s just no way I’ll be able to us all of it up! Let me know If you’re interested ;).
Anywho, I steeped this tea for about 7-8 min I was surprised on how dark the liqueur turned. Similar to a black tea. The taste is interesting, a little medicinal, a little flowery, and all together herbaceous. I like teas like that, and this’ll be good to keep around and to mix with echinacea. I’ll have to see how well it works with colds!
Flavors: Floral, Herbaceous, Medicinal
Another Christmas gift tea!
This one is quite refreshing. Slightly floral (not nearly as much as chamomile, for example). Very herbaceous. Reminds me of echinacea without being so medicinal or drying. Quite nice. I think this would go well with lemongrass or lemon myrtle.
Flavors: Floral, Herbaceous
Getting lots of tasting notes done today! I also got my tea cupboard (real and virtual) organized and updated so now I know where I’m at.
This is yet another tea I got for Christmas from my husband. Did I mention that it came in this box with 5 more teas? Gorgeous! http://www.internationalhouseoftea.com/collections/tea-gifts/products/wooden-tea-chest-6
I find it so cool that at iHOT I can get individual ingredients to make my own teas :). I wanted to get echinacae so I can mix it in tea when I feel a cold coming on. However, I wanted to try the herb alone so I can do a proper review. Overall it tastes medicinal and herby. Not much of a description eh? I guess I could also add in grassy, and has a little bit of a drying out effect on my mouth. Altogether it’s nice and good thing to keep around :)
Flavors: Drying, Grass, Herbaceous, Medicinal
Another Christmas gift from the husband :). I’ve had crappy “pumpkin” teas and good ones, so I was curious how this one would taste. Indeed it does have some pumpkin taste! The main taste is the spices, however. It’s a nice chai- would be great as a latte :)
Best thing about this tea? It’s available year round!
Flavors: Pumpkin, Spices
A re-review of this tea.
Original tasting note: “One of the teas I got from Christmas from the husband :) I wanted to try some different things. I just placed the tips directly in the boiled water and let it steep continuously. The result is a mild woody taste (obviously to be expected).”
I actually brought down the rating from 70 to 60. Reason being: I broke up the cedar tips into small, manageable pieces and mixed them with the Violet Leaf tea I also got from IHOT. I’ve been using up the mixed teas at work (I put measured amounts in paper filters and steep in in my timolino, which retains heat like nothing else) and I find the cedar to be very powerful. I don’t mind mild woody tastes like rooibos of honeybush, but when steeped for too long the cedar is much too woody for my taste. Therefore, I’ve been careful about the steeping time with this tea. I think the reason why I didn’t mind this tea at first was because I just steeped it in a mug where the water cools down quickly and therefore not much of the wood taste is released. In the timolino, it stays at a very hot temperature for a long time and it’s very powerful way to steep.
Flavors: Cedar, Wood