Sawadee Tea House

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Recent Tasting Notes

25

I don’t like this hot at all. I find it insanely bitter and unpleasant, and yes I do know to pay attention to temperature. It just doesn’t appear to be working. Unless it is actually possible to oversteep something when only giving it 30 seconds.

I have discovered a really nice way to use this tea!

I baked a lemon cake today, I thought we could have it for dessert tonight. The icing on it was supposed to be made with lemon juice and icing sugar, but I was making a cup of tea to enjoy while drinking and my eye also fell on this tin.

I followed the whim. Made about half a liter, quite strong and chilled it. Have just used that instead of the lemon juice to make the icing for the cake. It doesn’t really shine through all that much in the icing, but it does give it a slightly funny colour and adds a subtle bit of pizzazz to the icing. I don’t like it hot at all, but apparently this way I find it quite enjoyable.

Now, obviously I didn’t use the entire half liter to make icing for just one cake so I used the rest to rinse the mug I had made icing in. Stirring the remaining icing well into the chilled tea and mixed it back with the rest. I thought it would be an obvious way of sweetening it and also saving on the washing. (I do have a dishwasher now, but old habits of 15 years or so die hard!)

Frankly for a chilled beverage it could have done with a little more sweetening and it hasn’t taken that bitter edge out of the green tea that I was hoping it would. It is, however, still oodles better chilled than warm.

I shall have to try a cold brew of this. That should definitely take care of that bitterness.

All in all this was such a positive experience that I feel generous and will give it a few more points than the original 15.

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25

I haven’t the foggiest what’s in this stuff. Lemongrass, because I can see that. And green tea because that’s what it says it is. There are some other leafy bits of some sort mixed in that I don’t know what are. The actual green tea looks rather a lot like this kokeicha I had from Nothing But Tea once, except here they are tiny pellets instead of tiny needles. The kokeicha, for those who wonder, is matcha is made into a dough which is then kneaded and passed through a machine to create these uniform little needles, which are then dried and subsequently brewed same you would regular green tea’

It’s rather dark in colour, but it turns out that although the leaves, the word ‘leaf’ used in the broadest possible interpretation of the term here’ look like kokeicha, they can’t be because they haven’t disintegrated into dust. They just really are this mangled from the beginning, it seems. CTC green? O.o What a travesty.

The aroma is somewhat spicy. There’s definite lemon there, but also notes of something that I can only describe as coffee-ish. I believe my views on the various coffee blends out there are well known. Yuck to the nth degree. Nothing can ruin a good tea like a coffee bean. Just the thought of what happens to a tea if served in a coffee pot. Blech and blech again. There is a reason all the literature out there will advice readers to avoid teashops in which they are also grinding coffee. The aromatic oils of the coffee ruins the tea, there is just no two ways about that. Fact.

So yeah, one thing is coffee notes in a black tea. That’s bad enough. But in a green? Wow, that’s just unthinkable. How is it not punishable by law?

There is also a pseudo-lemon-y note from the lemongrass which I assume is what the ‘citron’ in the name refers to. I have a problem with the use of the word ‘citron’ here. I am aware that this is not danish, but ‘citron’ = ‘lemon’ in danish. As in the actual yellow fruit. So even though I know this is an english languaged tea with a ditto name, and I can’t expect it, that name makes me expect actual real lemons. Not lemongrass or verbena or whatever other pseudo-lemon flavoured stuff you can think up. Certainly not this other weird citrus fruit that the word apparently covers in english. Lemons. I can’t help it. It’s probably because I had never heard of citrons (as in the english meaning) before.

And this is very definitely not lemon

Obviously. It isn’t supposed to be either, is it, but that’s what I, try as I might, can’t help but expect.

The taste of it is a little closer to my expectations than the smell though. The first sip is heavily lemon-y and slightly astringent, so my very first thought was one of relief that I wasn’t about to have something that just totally didn’t come anywhere close to my expectations.

And then halfway through the sip, it turned so bitter I couldn’t swallow it with a straight face. I can’t tell if it’s the flavouring that does that or if it’s the nature of the leaves. I’ll have to experiment a little further with that before I can tell for sure. Right now it tastes like a combination of all of the above.

It’s not very nice. The first bit of the sip, where it still tasted nicely lemon-y, that was pretty good and refreshing, but the bitterness it turns into so quickly is just destroying it so utterly. For something lemon-y and refreshing, I believe I’m way better off sticking to the Lemon Oolong from Nothing But Tea.

atuinsails

Sounds like one of those “It must taste bad to be good for you” things. I never quite got that :D.

Angrboda

Yeah, I tend to develop reservations already when they put stuff like ‘antiox’ in the name. Miracle food just doesn’t exist.

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89
drank Monk's Blend by Sawadee Tea House
13 tasting notes

I quite enjoy this tea, the first time I had it sort of tasted like a light black tea with some hints of fruit. (can’t quite pick out what exactly) When I asked about the tea I was informed that it is one of the favorite for Nova Scotians and that it sort of has a "grassy or floral taste to it ". To be honest I did not get that at all, I did like it enough to buy a tin of it though.

It is a great any time of the day tea, having it the second time during my getting ready for work morning routine I had a little bit of a floral taste but it was only a small hint of floral. I would reccomend this to anyone for a tea.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec

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84

Delicious! I had a lovely black tea flavour with a hint of peach and a slightly stronger note of apricot. It was really quite yummy and not at all bitter.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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84

Yummy cup of this for breakfast. I could have steeped it a little bit longer to really bring out the peachiness, as I mostly had a lovely cup of black tea with a hint of peach, but that was just the morning blahs. Will do an in depth review at a later time. If I ever have time! : )

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89

Had a cup of this after work today. Unfortunately, I started feeling nauseous right afterward. I like to think there is no link between the two.

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89

So yummy, so very very yummy. I love this tea. Sweet caramellish floral yummy. Where do i get the caramel from???

Daddyselephant

Some of the Monk’s Blends I have contain caramel, theirs might too! We have fallen in love with this blend lol

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89

Yum yum. The beau and I are visiting my father for the weekend, so we have limited tea quantities. Luckily, this is one we brought with us. We popped it in his teapot with the inside of our travel mugs (yay ingenuity!) and are now enjoying a couple mugs of Monk’s Blend. There is a bit of an odd milky taste to it, we think it’s residue from the Red Rose that my father drinks obsessively. Other than that little change, this is a lovely cup. I still get creamy caramel sort of flavours and a sweet floral hint. Not the best mug I’ve ever had, thanks to that milky taste, but it’s yummy!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec

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89

Now this is an exceptionally pleasant cup of tea. I don’t know what calendula and sunflower petals taste like, but I get a relatively strong vanilla/caramel taste, with a bit of sweet floral afterward. I was very skeptical at first, but it smells great and tastes great, and stands up to steeping very well. Something important to me as well is that I get enough tea for the beau and I in the morning with 1 or 2 teaspoons – and this tea did so admirably. We realized over the weekend that our Hungry Caterpillar mugs hold almost 16 oz of tea, so we’ve been using way less leaf than recommended. And, honestly, I really enjoy it.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec

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51

Backlog:

I had a cup of this yesterday on the weekly tea date with the beau and a good friend. I was smelling a weird variety, from Scottish Caramel Pu-Erh (Still can’t handle the Pu-Erh smell, let alone try the taste!) to Jasmine Orchard Oolong to Tropical Fire. I went with the safe bet, and was a little disappointed, honestly. My cup wasn’t rolling in any exceptional flavours and all the beautiful fruits named in the description didn’t come through to me. It was more like a watered down cup of something. Might have been a bad teaspoon, not really sure. On the plus side, the beau had Monk’s Blend and that was delicious, so we bought some!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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67

Had a cup of this at Sawadee today. I am slowly becoming less enamoured with rooibos, but was in the mood for a caramel tea after a very cold walk in my birkenstocks. Darn you winter!!

This was a nice cuppa – Definitely rooibos, definitely caramel. Not much else to say!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 7 min, 0 sec

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76

Steeped up some of this in my travel mug before I left. I know better than to leave a black tea sitting for an hour, thank heavens. Thanks in part to my toothpaste, I am mostly just getting mint this time around, at least at first. Still not as dominant as the plain peppermint from Sawadee, but I am enjoying the subtle flavour of peppermint mixed with the mild black tea. It’s barely there, but it sort of adds depth to the tea. It taste more…full?

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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76

Sipping Moroccan Madness out of my teacup from Sawadee Tea House while sitting in the remains of the sun. I’ve got nearly half an hour left worth of sun to come in my window, and I intend to sit here and enjoy that, my tea and a book the whole time.

This is the first time I’ve brewed this tea, which I picked up last week at Sawadee. I was waiting for the all clear on their peppermint and since it was declared safe earlier in the week I feel that it’s time to test out the Moroccan Madness. The Sawadee Peppermint is extremely bold and in your face…Something I appreciate, but not what I was looking for at the moment. Luckily, the Moroccan Madness seems to only have a smattering of peppermint amongst the black tea. The smell is mild but minty, and refreshing.

Steeped, I am excited. The smell is a bit more of mint candies (you know, sweets!) than of mint leaves. This is a big departure from the peppermint, but that’s what I’m looking for. First sips are lovely and soothing. The mint is there, I can taste it and feel it in the coolness of my mouth, but it’s not hitting me over the head. It’s dominating the black tea base, but I still know the tea is there. At the end of the sip I get a hint of that ever familiar orange pekoe flavour. This is, for me, excellently blended. The mix is perfect, and really refreshing. I might add more mint to this on days when I’m looking for more of a kick, but this is fantastic right now. Just what I’d hoped for.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
QuiltGuppy

It sounds like they have some amazing teas hiding up there in Canada. :)

Daddyselephant

That’s it. I’m going to Halifax just to try this tea house.

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90
drank Peppermint by Sawadee Tea House
709 tasting notes

Had a cup of this last evening and am re-steeping the leaves this morning for another. The Sawadee peppermint is so powerful that I believe it will do a second steep without any trouble. Delicious!

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90
drank Peppermint by Sawadee Tea House
709 tasting notes

This is another of the teas I picked up while at Sawadee Tea House last week. Mie Mie packaged up 50 grams for me, because I became intoxicated by the smell. I already have 50 grams of David’s Tea’s peppermint, but the smell of this was just so in your face that I had to give it a go. Strong strong mint loveliness!

This is my first time trying it, as I waited to hear if it was clear of salmonella or not – Obviously, it’s safe! (Or so we hope, :D). The smell is extremely strong. If you don’t like peppermint, run away quickly. The beau hates the smell, as he only likes peppermint in toothpaste and mouthwash. The smell is strong enough to suggest of either. And maybe do the work of both! I really don’t have a peppermint tea that can stand up to this one for smell or taste – I hope the moroccan mint I also picked up is equally bold. At least I have extra mint on hand to kick it up a notch if necessary. : )

I put a teaspoon in my travel mug this morning to take to work…it’s been steeping for half an hour already, and my has that mint come out to play. It is so strong that I’m actually left with a cold mouth after taking a sip, despite the fact that the tea is HOT! I love it!! It is exactly what it claims to be – Strong peppermint. Reminds me of the field of mint that grew by my childhood home. We always had a pot of water on the woodstove with some mint tossed in – I think a combination of this and my grandparents’ endless supply of Double Scotch Muints fostered this obsession – But Sawadee’s peppermint is helping keep it alive.

TeaEqualisBliss – If ever you should be in Nova Scotia and in desperate need of a really minty tea, give this one a go!

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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87
drank Apple Black by Sawadee Tea House
709 tasting notes

This was my breakfast tea today…in usual morning style I poured, thought about only steeping it for 3.5 minutes and then steeped it for 5.5 without thinking. Oh, where does the time go in the morning? I was a bit concerned about over-steeping, but today it hasn’t hurt the tea at all. There is a yummy apple taste at the front of the sip, maybe sort of like a baked apple and the tea is there at the end of the sip. It is leaning toward bitter at the very end because of my over-steepage, but that’s my own fault. I’ve also never figured out what astringency means tastewise, so I don’t know how that is. It’s so strange to be totally unsure about what a word means…

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 30 sec
Geoffrey Norman

Is it a Turkish-style Apple Black?

Uniquity

I don’t know what Turkish style means. I have a wee sample of one somewhere but I don’t remember what it was like at all..

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87
drank Apple Black by Sawadee Tea House
709 tasting notes

Pot of this for breakfast today. It actually came out a little bitter from over-steeping, maybe the beau put more than me, or the components were different. Still a refreshing apley cup, but I enjoyed the first pot more. Adjusting the rating accordingly, but high hopes to move it back up with the next. I don’t always pay the best of attention to tea first thing in the morning..

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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87
drank Apple Black by Sawadee Tea House
709 tasting notes

This was my breakfast tea today and let it be known that I think I have found my apple tea. Sawadee really is a delight – The beau and I think we found our ideal strawberry there yesterday (a rooibos, he had a mug while we were there) and we boguht some of this apple to try at home. Brewed it this morning using black tea guidelines, but there was no need. Some of the tea sat in the pot steeping for an extra 10 – 15 minutes and it never got bitter at all. There is not a strong black tea taste, but it’s a great base and accompaniment to the delicious apple. I didn’t get any of that chemical or artificial apple flavour I’ve gotten from most other apple teas, and I could see the chunks of actual apple floating in the tea. Great taste – Sure to buy more!!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Daddyselephant

Ack! You’ve done it again and I’m actually really tempted by this place, if only because it’s in Halifax. Some of their blends look amazingly tasty though. Might have to put an order together when the money comes in. Which they had their teaware on the website, though!

Uniquity

Their website is extremely out of date – I actually talked to the owner about that when I was there yesterday. There was somebody helping her, but in the age old tradition he became too busy.

I highly advise a Sawadee order…if you have long distance, I would also advise giving them a call. I’m sure the owner (I don’t know her name, sorry!) would be willing to help you out re: teawares – maybe photos or something? If she can’t, I could certainly give it a go!

I’ve been a David’s devotee since the beginning, but I love a good independent store, especially if it’s got the quality to back it up.

Daddyselephant

I will definitely have to look in to that, especially if I can find cute teapots at a good price! If only we had the money now, my mother in law is flying out to the Halifax area on Monday, I could force her to bring me home tea LOL.

I will definitely give them a call, if only to get an updated tea list. I love Davids and can’t imagine ever giving my money to any other big company like Teaopia (crap service around here anyway, and terrible quality), but for independent stores I think I’m more than happy to make an exception.

Uniquity

I would work the mother in law angle, if I were you! There’s gotta be an anniversary, birthday or other holiday around now, right?

Daddyselephant

Ha! If she were going to Halifax proper, I so would, but she’s only going to be in the area for 2.5 days, and the area is about an hour away so…next time, gadget, next tiiiime! LOL. (Although my birthday is next month….hmmmm)

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91

Had the fourth steep of this with my breakfast. We steeped it far longer this time, and it came out with a strong floral flavour. I still get a hintof something almost spicy, like a half second of ginger. I can’t explain it, but I like it!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 8 min or more

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91

Going for a third steeping of this with the same people as yesterday. Smells yummy, looks gorgeous and tastes delicious. Is this the start of a proper green tea love? Or a floral love? Or both??

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91

The beau bought 6 of these tonight. We’d never had a flowering tea before and he went a bit overboard…Luckily, it all worked out! I’m not so clear on what is in this tea, but I can say that it is absolutely delicious. I always think I don’t like floral teas, but it’s not true. I don’t like chamomile yet, but every other floral tea I have is delicious. For $2.50 apiece (we got a discount buying 6, and got a free tin to store them in) they are a treat in the teapot, but a delightful tea as well. The tea is very mild tasting, and sort of sweet. Natural sweet though, the way that vegetables can be. I really am enjoying it. We’re on our second steep already…Hopefully we get a few more.

((This one really opened up on the first steep and is really pretty!!))

ps – I get a hint of spiciness on the sip, but the beau doesn’t. Not sure why. We both agree that this (the second steep) is more flavourful than the first. Also, I’m loving my new koi teacup for this lovely tea!

Preparation
4 min, 45 sec

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76

This is not vanilla. It’s barely even chai, honestly. On first smell, this is not super appealing. There is a whiff of vanilla in the aroma, but none of that translates to the taste. Instead I get a bit of astringent black tea and some mild chai. No spices really stand out, but they do work together nicely as a cup you don’t really have to focus on too hard. If this astringency could be eliminated it would be a much nicer cup, but this is okay, as is. This is yet another oldie that I am going to try to force myself through. I need more tea turnover!

Preparation
3 min, 30 sec

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76

I still don’t get even a hint of vanilla flavour in this chai, but it is quite yummy as a standard spice chai. The beau offered me gingerbread chai again this morning but I think I need to ration it, so I went for this one. This is more of a spicy chai with cinnamon and pepper flavours, but it’s really nice. Actually quite similar to David’s Tea’s Saigon Chai, at least by my memory. I’ll have to do a taste test someday. Anyway, I love chai, so this is a lovely treat!

EDIT: For today, the rating goes up for it’s versatility. It’s good hot, it’s good cold. It didn’t do so great in stovetop, but that was my fault. Delish.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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76

Well, prepared this with my favourite mad scientist approach as a stovetop chai. Threw in some milk, then some water, 1 tsp or so of this and a pinch of highland chai mix to kick it up a notch (I was concerned this wouldn’t stand up to the stovetop treatment).

The smell is unusual – almost pumpkin-like, probably more of a ginger smell than anything but my brain associates it with pumpkin pie. I don’t really like pumpkin. Time to overcome weird smell aversions! I know I like this tea, we’ll see how I feel about it with the heated milk, etc.

First sips: Too milky. Darn. I don’t really like milk at all, haven’t ever (apparently). I thought I had used little enough that it would bother me, but the milk UGH is still there. This might get poured out just because I don’t have it in me to drink anything milk-like right now. I’ve had a delicious chai latte at the market – maybe the key is to have steamed milk? (as opposed to just heating it on the stove with the water). I won’t be adjusting the rating for this tea because it’s not the tea’s fault that I drowned it in milk. : (

KeenTeaThyme

Try with soy milk. I can’t drink milk (not lactose-intolerant, but allergic to a preservative enzyme), so I opt for soy milk. If you use a favored one – try Very Vanilla by Silk – you’ll get that latte feeling. I usually don’t drink (soy) milk w/tea, but once in a while I treat myself to a chai latte from Starbucks, and I get it with soy. Just a thought!

LefTea

You could also try using a frother. Ikea has a cheap one that goes in the cup, works well and $1.99.

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