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Recent Tasting Notes
Turns out last time I thought I had this, I was actually drinking Saskatoon Berry (I just have to remember to move that tasting note over to the right page). This one is very similar except with a little less berry flavor and a little more hibiscus. There is also a cherry component to this that is pleasant but adds to the tartness. Granted this was steeped longer which could account for this being more flavorful. It’s not a bad cup but not something I will be seeking out in the future either. Still it was fun to try so thank you Roswell Strange for the share! 218.
I should have let this steep longer but it was sooooooo dark that I worried the hibiscus was already taking over the cold brew. Now, as I sip, luckily there is no tartness but there also isn’t much other flavors either. However, what I do pick up as the sip ends is a nice splash of sweet berry goodness. If only that flavor were stronger because what little I am getting is amazing. Well, at least I have more to experiment with so thank you Roswell Strange for the share :)
Thanks, Roswell Strange for the sample!
Okay, I admit, I am one of those people who do a lot of Googling. I feel like my search engine and I have a very good relationship, she tells me everything I need to know. Google know more about me than anyone, it’ll bet.
So today I turn to my search bar, because, what the hell is a Saskatoon berry? is that even a thing??
Yes. Yes it is.
According to google, it is a fruit that is native to western Canada and was a main source of food for the Native Americans in the ye old times. Nowadays, there are pick-you-own type farms that grow bushes of the stuff. Huh.
I cold brewed this tea for about 10 or so hours, and I have to say, it’s pretty nicely berry flavored. The hibiscus gives it a tart and thick mouthfeel, while I am getting blackberries and blueberries, I am not totally sure what the Saskatoon berry is supposed to taste like, but I am getting a hint of Marionberry or huckleberry that may be from that. it’s a bit like drinking jam, which is a little strange for me. I don’t think I would drink this alone, but I bet it would be killer in a smoothie.
Yesterday’s cold brew.
I’m half glad my mouth was super, super frozen and numb and I could hardly taste anything (had some fillings done) because what I did taste of this was hibiscus overload. I accidentally steeped this for near 24 hours though; long enough to get the hibby good and fucking concentrated. My own fault, really…
Today’s word of the day is salvo. Definitely a new one for me.
Salvo is 1. the firing of two or more guns, or artillery pieces, at a single target or as a salute; 2. the release all at once of a rack of bombs or rockets.
Story time and then tasting note time…
So, as I mentioned maybe a week ago I’ve gotten really obsessed with Trivia Crack; and I guess I’m pretty good at it ‘cause I currently have a 13:1 win ratio – the one time I’ve lost being to Tre. But, I’ve beat him maybe six times? And it’s getting to the point where he doesn’t want to play with me anymore. He’s a sore loser.
But two nights ago I convinced him to start a round with me; I beat him in two turns. And in some sort of ‘manly rage’ he whipped his shirt off and stormed into his room. Jokingly I shouted “Well, at least you didn’t angrily rip off your pants”. He came back out, and I guess to spite me, he whipped off his sweats. Now, here’s the thing guys – he was wearing boxers (and I’ve seen him in his underwear enough to not be even close to shocked about it) so we both figured it’d be like sarcastically funny and that’d be that.
But no; that’s too easy. Instead, the boxers came off with the fucking sweatpants. Guys; I saw Tre’s dingle dangle! It was an INTENSE moment of awkwardness, followed by me just snickering and laughing – a lot. And then Tre, half joking and half serious, tried to justify the events that had just gone down with “Hey, it’s cold down here tonight!”. Didn’t help. So didn’t help. I haven’t laughed that hard in… Well, probably in months.
So enough about Tre’s penis though…
This tisane was a gift from my Mom; she thought it’d be nice to have something with Saskatoons in it to pass along to people I swap with – and I think she was right. I love being able to share the delicious berry that my town is named after. Plus, it’s locally made too which makes it a lot more interesting in my opinion too.
I decided to do a cold brew for my first try; sadly there’s a lot of hibiscus in the blend so a cold brew seemed like the best way to hold back some of the expected tartness. Thankfully, there’s also a lot of berries in the blend too as well. But even still, not thirty seconds after I’d poured the water over the leaves the water was already the colour of Grimace.
By the time the brew was done, it was a deep, dark almost maroon colour – but just slightly more purple. It reminded me of the colour of red wine. The smell is mostly hibiscus. That’s not very promising, but I’m still holding out that this’ll deliver the Saskatoon berry flavour I know and love anyway.
And the moment of truth; taste test!
The initial flavour here is a tart hibiscus flavour as anticipated; however, thankfully this isn’t all hibiscus. Similar to other berry/hibiscus teas I’ve had before like Rum Cream, from another local company, this starts tart and softens into a more mellow berry drink. I can definitely taste Saskatoon berries myself, but I also really taste the blueberries and black currants in the blend. Thankfully, I don’t get much flavour from the raisins – I’m not a raisin person, so it’s no loss for me.
For people unfamiliar with Saskatoon Berries (someday when I’m a rich, wealthy person I’m going to find a way to send you all piping hot Saskatoon Berry pies with ice cream; they’re heavenly) picture something sort of like a blueberry and cranberry cross. They’re great straight, in pies, in jam or jelly, and as syrup. Really, they’re just great. It’s that simple.
I am enjoying this cold brew a lot though I’m craving a richer, more full Saskatoon berry flavour. If they used more Saskatoons and cut down a little on the amount of other berries in the tea, I think this could be amazing without having a flat flavour. As is, I’m concerned people not familiar with Saskatoons are mainly going to focus in on the other berries in the blend and the hibiscus and miss out on the great flavour. That makes me a little disappointed.
Eventually I’ll try this one hot; I’m hoping that the hibiscus wont bury the Saskatoon flavour even further…
Flavors: Berries, Black Currant, Blueberry, Cranberry, Tart
Gonna work on a few tasting notes for a little while; I’ve done a bad job writing the latter half of this week – but I had super weird and polar opposite hours that ‘caused my sleep pattern to get SEVERELY out of whack. I’ve all the last 72 hours, aside from getting ready for work, bussing to work, and actually working, asleep. No free time…
The one exception being when I woke up yesterday at 1AM (after sleeping for ten straight hours following a File Maintenance shift starting at 5AM) and watched Soul Surfer on Netflix super early in the morning (1:30AM until like 3AM?) and cried like a little baby. I don’t know why it made me so emotional; I mean I’ve read her book and I didn’t even cry that much at the book; but the water works were GOING. Thank God Tre’s still out of town – I’d have never lived down that much tears.
But then after that, right back to sleep until 9:30AM when I was woken up by a phone call; I was supposed to start work at 9:00AM! There’d be a communication when I was getting my schedule though, and I’d written down someone else’s shifts (one of the other Kelly’s who work with me; there’s four in total for our department). I didn’t think I started until 11…
So rough start to my day I guess; but it’s gone really well otherwise! I obviously didn’t have time to make any tea while getting ready for work – I wound up there makeup less, without showering, in an unwashed uniform. Barely had time to grab some things from the fridge to make a lunch before my cab had arrived. Thankfully I had this one cold brewed and prestrained; so I wasn’t totally tea-less!
You know what though? As tasty as this one was, it wasn’t really really similar to the Saskatoon Berry tisane I have from the same company. Really, you could go look at my tasting note for that one and it’d convey almost everything I experienced with the cold brew for this one.
And I guess that makes sense, they do have really similar ingredient lists but I was hoping the different proportions of stuff in the blends would make for some more noticeable contrast. The one sort of justifiable and significant difference is very pleasant though; this blend has Chokecherries in it, and the Saskatoon Berry doesn’t. You can taste them in here too; and they’re sweet and almost jammy. But I think a little more like a sweet and tart compote. Subtle difference; but still different.
Still haven’t tried either of the two blends hot yet; the hibiscus scares me. What’s the middle ground between cold brew and hot cup? I need to do that next, I guess…
Flavors: Berries, Cherry, Hibiscus, Tart
This is the second Prairie Berry blend I’ve ever owned, though this one is a fair bit different than the DT blend by the same name – for starters, it’s a tisane. Also, in addition to Saskatoon Berries I believe it has cranberry, chokecherry, blueberry, raisins, and elderberries among other ingredients. I’m honestly not looking right at the bottle or the ingredients list for this one or DT’s Prairie Berry though; so I might be remembering things a little wrong.
This one was a present from my Mom for Christmas which I just received today. She also gave me another blend by the same company that features Saskatoon Berries primarily, not just a whole bunch of local fruit/berries. Rather thoughtfully, her intention was for me to have something to add to swaps for the people who aren’t familiar with Saskatoons. And if you’re not, you should try them if you ever get a chance! I live in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan – and the berries are so common and popular here that my city is named after the berry, and not the other way around.
This was the family’s second “Tea Soda” of the day. My sister wouldn’t try it because of the hibiscus though; she’s not a fan, and this honestly does have a lot of hibby in the blend. I did make the concentrated batch into a sweetened syrup first though; still, she wouldn’t try it! What a stubborn ten year old. Even floated in a litre of soda water, this was the colour of Doctor Pepper – basically black with a slight red tint. Maybe a little more of a burgundy for this one, though.
Hmm, taste wise this does have lots of straight hibiscus flavour; even sweetened and with all the other berries in the blend. I’m sad to say the Saskatoons are really hard to pick out; and I imagine it’d be even harder for someone not familiar with them in the first place. Other than hibiscus I think I taste chokecherry more than anything else? I do like chokecherries though (especially in jam), and this sweetened up it’s a little bit like a cherry soda? But with more natural tartness.
I’m very worried about trying this one hot; I know the hibiscus is going to be more than dominant; it’s gonna pull a Christian Grey and just fucking abuse this tisane. Yeah, I just made a jab at 50 Shades of Grey – I hate the series though, and I weep for everyone who goes to see it on V-Day and mistakes this abusive relationship for a healthy BDSM lifestyle. It’s so bad; even my ten year old sister today said she wants to see the movie. I mean, she wont because it’s rated R and there’s no way either Mom or her Dad are gonna let that happen; but the possibility of that kind of abuse being romanticized for her troubles me.
Yeah; that’s huge tangent – sorry. All that to say next up wont be a hot brew; it’s definitely gonna be a cold brew. Hopefully that keeps that gnarly hibiscus in check.
I have a confession to make: I nicked this from my mom’s stash, BUT it’s okay because she’s currently in Thailand and won’t notice anyways!
Another confession: this is what I kinda expected DavidsTea’s Prairie Berry to taste like… and then it didn’t. So, sometimes when I want this tea dumbed down and the DT Prairie Berry to be more flavourful I just mix the two together!
Now, let’s talk about this tea. Currently, with the roller-coaster of nausea/vomiting I am on, it’s the only fruity tea that I have been guzzling. And I mean guzzling. Hot. Cold. Iced. It doesn’t matter, if it’s there I will drink it. Plus, add a little honey or raw sugar, pop it in the fridge overnight, and it tastes like Saskatchewan Summer in a glass. Which is nice because our lovely summer abruptly ended this week with -5C temperatures.
Oddly enough, while I can taste the hibiscus in this tisane, I don’t mind it that much as it isn’t very strong or prominent, and it just seems to ‘go’ with the other ingredients. I added a bit of honey to sweetened it, but after deliberation I think it tastes better without. I guess the fruit in it is so naturally sweet you don’t really need anything extra.