Runa

Recent Tasting Notes

Yesterday evening I stopped by ‘Traveling Tea’ shop in Maplewood before I started playing. This is the same place where I get the much adored & coveted pumpkin ginger tea that Sil & I love SO MUCH. I talked to Kateri (the owner) about getting more of that this fall, even offering to roast as many pumpkins as she needs to guarantee an ample supply for the winter. Here’s her blog – http://www.traveling-tea.com

So while we were chatting, she offered me samples of various things, including a Vanilla Oolong that was nice, & this cold drink. She actually opened a fresh bottle to offer me a little taste, and it was tasty, so I bought the rest of the bottle from her. Unlike some overly tart hibiscus drinks, this one has just enough of that herb to lift the flavor up. I haven’t drank much guayusa, so I don’t really have much to say about it, but this was a pleasant cold drink to enjoy while I was playing my first set, kind of light, kind of sweet, & gratefully cold!

Marzipan

Pumpkin ginger sounds lovely.

Sarsonator

Pumpkin Ginger!!!! That sounds like an amazing combo. Another tea for my wishlist!

Megan

Ohh I’ve seen them at the farmers markets. I didn’t realize they had an actual store front.

Terri HarpLady

Yup, Megan, just 5 minutes from my house in Maplewood. You can stop by there when you come over for tea ;)
It’s on Sutton, just south of Manchester in the first block on your right.

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67
drank Ginger Citrus Guayusa by Runa
22 tasting notes

Steeped this one twice in a row, loved it equally both time. I found the ginger to be really soothing in combination with the citrus.

Flavors: Earth, Orange Zest, Plants

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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97
drank Guayusa by Runa
30 tasting notes

I was very impressed with this tea. This is a cousin of Yerba mate which I thought would taste bad also. This tea has a barky sweetness to it like saspirilla. Its my favorite herbal tea for taste. I find this tea has no crash, it has L-theanine unlike yerba and coffee. This is what helps prevent the crash and anxiety symptoms (also found in tea). This tea is defiantly a nootropic, it does boost my brain performance. For example I will remember a name much more quickly. The other thing it does, I won’t say it works every time, this tea really helps you see your dreams more clearly. I feel the only downside to this tea is that there really have been no studies done on the health benefits of this tea. I think the real reason it boosts brain performance greatly is that the problem with coffee is the lack of l-theanine, so when you drink too much you will get the jitters and anxiety, with this tea you can get away with drinking more caffeine, this allows for more long term energy in the mind/body. Overall the taste can not be compared to any other tea, its like drinking a sweet leaf.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Mint Guayusa Tea by Runa
532 tasting notes

Sipdown!

I’ve tried a few guayusa teas now and never really enjoyed them, so I was ambivalent about this one. But the lure of an easy sipdown was too hard to resist.

Surprisingly, this one wasn’t so bad! The mint and the guayusa really complement each other here, so it doesn’t feel like you’re drinking a big cup of medicinal herbs. Still not something I’d reach for on a daily basis, but glad I got to try it.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 30 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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75
drank Ginger Citrus Guayusa by Runa
1174 tasting notes

My very first Guayusa experience, this one from Runa, Ginger Citrus, tastes very gingery, with the solid bite I favor in ginger infusions. What’s new to me is the slippery texture (or is that slimy?) of the guayusa itself, which reminds me of the texture of licorice root infusions. The difference is that this was not very sweet at all—despite the text claiming a “naturally sweet taste”. Of course, it’s all relative. Next to licorice root, this is definitely not sweet. Next to bitter maté, well, okay, yes, I guess that it could be considered sweet.

The orange flavor here is far more subtle than the ginger, and overall this was a pleasant caffeinated non-tea experience, though I still have no idea what guayusa itself tastes like. The blend is definitely better than most of the maté blends I’ve tried, so I’ll be checking out the other flavors from this line…

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 30 sec 2 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Rainforest Mint Guayusa has a crisp light and refreshing flavor, not bad for a desert type tea.

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75

I drank this tea after pulling a near all-nighter studying for exams. It helped me stay awake the next day, more so than my regular cup of tea does. Light flavor, but still good.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Lemon Zest

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 7 min, 0 sec 1 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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75

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69
drank Ginger Citrus Guayusa by Runa
532 tasting notes

Easter Weekend Sipdown 5/8!

I still didn’t get much citrus or ginger in this steep, and I’m still getting my bearings on how I feel about guayusa teas. But at least I have one less tea in my cupboard to worry about.

Happy Easter/Passover/spring holiday of your choice, everyone! Many thanks again to kaylee for the sample.

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69
drank Ginger Citrus Guayusa by Runa
532 tasting notes

I slept poorly last night, and this morning I need to be spry, as I’m taking both cats to the vet – a place they hate. It seemed like something caffeine-heavy would be the smart way to go.

I got two teabags of this in my swap package from kaylee – thanks! I’ve never had guayusa before, but judging from this teabag, it’s an….acquired taste. Not quite bitter, not quite herbal, slightly medicinal. I added some lemon-infused honey to this to kick up the citrus notes, but I’m not tasting much citrus or ginger here.

Ah well. I really just need the caffeine bump, so this will suffice.

Kaylee

Aww, sorry you didn’t like it. This is actually one of my favorite guayusas. How long did you steep? I usually go for about 7 min. It brings the citrus out. Then again, it makes the base stronger too…

Try a Butiki guayusa next time. The base tastes really different.

Hope the cats are ok!

Christina

Hi Kaylee,

Don’t worry! I’m sure that as I try more varieties, I’ll get a better sense of it – I really appreciate you sending me a number of them to try (as well as the mates).

The kitties are good – another tasting note mentioning them will be up shortly.

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90
drank Ginger Citrus Guayusa by Runa
394 tasting notes

Nom nom nom. I had the teabag of this for breakfast a few days ago and it was lovely. The smell is all citrus, sweet and a tad tart. The flavor itself is a very natural citrus and ginger balance, supported by the slight bitterness of the guayusa. I am going to have to get a box of either this or the Cinnamon Lemongrass to keep at the office.

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90

Runa guayusa helped get me through grad school, but I’ve never had any of the flavored versions before. I got a sample teabag of this and the Ginger Citrus flavor at the Coffee & Tea Festival. I’ve been saving them for a particularly tired morning. Of course, I ended up drinking both this week.

This is so perfect. The cinnamon is prominent, natural-tasting, and brisk. Hints of lemongrass come through in just the right balance. The base is lovely. Overall, a nice, round, satisfying morning cuppa.

Stephanie

Cinnamon / lemongrass?? I can’t picture it! Weird!

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drank Mint Guayusa Tea by Runa
2523 tasting notes

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drank Rainforest Mint Guayusa by Runa
47 tasting notes

This was a gift…from me to my husband, but extreme fatigue had me reaching for it in desperation today. Delicious earthy flavor, mild, slightly sweet; the mint is fresh tasting. I added a squeeze of lemon, and a few drops of NuNaturals stevia (for some reason, I love when mint teas are just a little sweet and lemony.) Really tasty! And, I got no jittery, unpleasant feeling, the way I do from coffee. Hmmm, might be reaching into my husband’s guayusa again soon!

Alphakitty

I adore guayusa, it’s so refreshing and the caffeine affects me quite differently than coffee.

Serenity

Alphakitty: You are so right: hours later and NO crash, unlike my memories of coffee, and even black tea at times. I’m wondering how guayusa tastes as a chai masala…

Helena

if you want a lemony guayusa you should try Butiki Tea’s Good Morning Sunshine :D

Alphakitty

I second Butiki for guayusa! They sell a pure one as well that you could mix up your own chai blend. Maybe with Verdant’s chai spices… now I want to place more tea orders! ^^;

Serenity

Thank you, Helena and Alphakitty! Perfectly lovely suggestions for my wish list!

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drank Guayusa by Runa
185 tasting notes

I do not think this Guayusa thing is for me. It has a sweet, grassy taste that, while not altogether unpleasant… just isn’t something I strive for in a drink.

The smell and taste are very reminiscent of a fresh cut grass clippings, from that first cut in the spring where you’ve never really had enough days in a row for the grass to get dry. So you kind of struggle through the clumping, wet grass, so that you can get a handle on the lawn. That’s what this reminds me of, wet clumpy grass.

The second batch of this sample that we brewed, we included some Ssssspicy from SerendipiTea, and it did improve the flavor some (which means to say that the spices drowned out some of the grassy flavor).

So yeah. Not my cup of tea-like-herbal-beverage, but I kind of guessed that going in, so I don’t think it’s quite fair to give it a lower rating. If I did rate it though, it would probably be… 60s or so. Like I said, it isn’t offensive, it just is far from desirable.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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drank Guayusa Spice by Runa
974 tasting notes

Tea of experimentation….

I picked up a box of this when I was in Baltimore early this week. (Man, I love Wegman’s.) So far, I really only get the lemongrass. Not much in the way of spice, and the base is kind of a leafy taste with a subtle edge of spearmint…like if the minty part was missing and you just got the spear-. Anyway…… We will see if it does anything for my mental clarity at this point. I sure could use some of that!

8 oz mug, 1 bag, freshly boiled water, 4 minutes.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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drank Guayusa Spice by Runa
1001 tasting notes

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drank Guayusa Spice by Runa
1001 tasting notes

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drank Guayusa Spice by Runa
1001 tasting notes

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drank Guayusa Spice by Runa
1001 tasting notes

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drank Guayusa by Runa
42 tasting notes

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