Simpson & VailEdit Company
Popular Teas from Simpson & VailSee All 215 Teas
Recent Tasting Notes
A sample from Miss B! This was my early evening cup last night, and I was expecting a fairly mild flavour. I’ve not found a hazelnut tea that particularly struck me before, but this one was quite an eye opener. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 4 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk, because it brewed up pretty dark.
It’s quite a straightforward tea in many ways. The flavour is fairly simple and one-note, and it’s definitely not the kind of tea where there’s a lot going on and you really have to think about what you’re tasting. This tea, basically, is exactly what it promises to be; hazelnut on a smooth, mellow black base. It’s rich and nutty to taste, and it is specifically hazelnut that I can taste, rather than just generic “nut”. The hazelnut flavour emerges mostly in the mid-sip, and then there’s the slight bitterness of hazelnut skin in the aftertaste. It didn’t strike me as a particularly sweet tea, and the base wasn’t malty, so there’s nothing to conflict with the richness of the hazelnut and the slightly savoury vibe that can have. I did find that the flavour seemed to strengthen as the tea cooled, which was a pleasant surprise. Possibly this one would make a good cold brew, although I don’t have enough leaf at the moment to try that out. I enjoyed this one a lot more than I anticipated, though, and so it would be a possible future purchase for me. Maybe one day I’ll get to test my cold brew theory with this tea! In the meantime, I shall enjoy a second hot cup before I have to say goodbye. I’m really glad I had the opportunity to try this one, because I’m not sure I would have picked it out of my own accord.
A sample from Miss B! I pulled out the Simpson and Vail blends first because I’ve experienced a degree of flavour loss in the past with their flavoured blends. These samples are stored in plastic ziploc bags, but they’re not really air tight and I didn’t want to leave them longer than I had to. I should have got around to starting these samples much sooner, but stuff happened and life got in the way, and somehow I just never got round to it. I’m on a more even keel now, so better late than never!
Having said that, I have had quite a day. This week I’ve worked six days, which I never enjoy because I get so tired, but which are essential during open day season and usually at least reasonably fun. I work in a University Admissions department, so my role is pretty much focused on being welcoming and answering queries on entry requirements, course content, and the like. One girl didn’t like what she was being told, and had A TANTRUM on the floor, kicking and screaming, crying and shouting. She was 18, so should have known better, but obviously used to getting her own way. Honestly, I was embarrassed for her. Also annoyed, when one of the academics came up to me later and told me that she’d wanted her to “go home happy, with a smile on her face”, and so had told her that her low grades would be acceptable after all. Helpful, right? That doesn’t make us look unprofessional at all. All I can say is, I’m glad today is over.
Now I’m home, I really wanted a comfort tea. Chai is that to me, especially during the colder months. Chocolate is good, too, obviously. Hence, this one called to me quite strongly. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it approximately 4 minutes in boiling water. I added a decent slug of milk, so it’s kind of a proper chai, without as much fuss.
It’s really delicious. The chocolate and the spices are pretty much perfectly balanced, so that both can be tasted and neither is overpowering. The chocolate comes across as a dark, cocoa-y kind of flavour, perfectly suited to the warmth of the cinnamon and ginger, slight dankness of clove, and the beauty that is cardamon. The black tea base is smooth and a little sweet and malty, and the overall combination strikes me as a really great one. I’m enjoying my cup, now that I can finally start to relax a little.
Good morning my Steepsterites! Hope you all are having a great one so far. I’m so happy today is Friday. I’m ready for this weekend and my “bachlorette” party (more like a gathering at a pottery shop to drink wine and paint bowls!). Should be a good time!
Last night I enjoyed several mugs of this delicious apple cinnamon coffeecake flavored tea. The tea tastes exactly like the name. Another winner from Simpson & Vail. I’m really enjoying their teas!
Happy Friday sipping all!
Bought this herb for allergy seasons, spring & fall for me. It works quite well for coughing, as the native Americans knew. It is an ingredient in may commercial cough syrups, but this tea works just as well, plus it is comforting. My father used to mix bourbon, honey & lemon. I do the same, then add it to this tea.
Bought a one ounce sample of this tea with my order from Simpson and Vail last week. This is really good. I wish I had bought more. This is a very light colored oolong. The first steep was extremely light colored. It is not roasted. There is a nice light floral taste. The main notes that come to mind when I drink this are honey and nectarines. There is no vegetal taste and certainly no roasted taste. This is a green oolong. It has beautiful green rolled leaves. This is easily as good as just about anything else I have drank from more expensive vendors. It is one of Simpson and Vail’s more expensive offerings at around $7 an ounce. That still is not at all a bad price for an oolong with such a quality taste. Many other companies would easily get $20 an ounce for something like this. I only brewed this four times but the leaves would have gone for more. I stopped at four steeps because I am always watching my caffeine. This was good tea.
I brewed this four times in a 180ml teapot with 7g leaf and 190 degree water. I gave it a 10 second rinse then steeped it for 10 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, and 20 sec.
Flavors: Floral, Honey
Brewed this as an iced tea today. It has a very strong taste of the rooibos and the sweet taste of mango and papaya. However, the rooibos is a little too strong for me. Still, it makes a refreshing, caffeine free iced tea. Bought this with my order the other day not realizing I already had it. It was already in my cupboard, ah well.
Brewed this in a 16oz Teavana Glass Perfect Tea Maker with 5 tsp leaf and 2 tbl rock sugar for 5 minutes in boiling water then poured it over ice.
Ok, here’s my re-written post. Apparently my iPhone refreshes pages whenever it comes back from the lock screen. :/
Hey, this one didn’t get chocolate-ified in shipping! Yay!
Now, as far as this being a creme brulee tea goes, I’m not sure they hit the nail on the head. However, it is a great first-thing-in-the-morning treat. I’m getting notes of vanilla, dairy, maple, lightly toasted caramel without the butter, and something that took me a minute to recognize. It was hookah tobacco! Not hookah smoke, just the super-sweet, almost fruity scent of the tobacco itself. I wasn’t expecting that at all, but it’s plain as day to me. So, basically, this is very interesting and tasty… but I wouldn’t call it creme brulee.
I also want to mention that the caffeine content is very nice if you’re dragging your feet.
Flavors: Burnt Sugar, Caramel, Cream, Maple, Molasses, Tobacco, Vanilla
EDIT: I have contacted S&V and they are replacing my entire order – this time double-bagging and ziplocking. I feel a little sad that they had to do this, but I’m glad I contacted them. Thank you, Nichole and TeaBrat for encouraging me to say something. I have trouble standing up for myself sometimes.
I am facing a tea tragedy. Violet teas are one of my absolute favorites. I basically convinced myself to place my most recent order on the fact that Simpson & Vail makes a violet tea.
However, S&V sent their teas to me in rolled up paper bags, like the ones you get coffee beans in. They were by NO means airtight. I knew when I received the box that they had poorly packaged my order because I could smell it through the cardboard. Sadly, one tea in particular, Strawberry Cupcake, had contaminated basically the whole box. It absolutely reeked of Tootsie Roll chocolate.
So, I can tell this is good underneath it all! The black tea base isn’t too bitter or astringent. The violet is mild, but very much present. It doesn’t taste like I’m drinking soap or old lady perfume. And the little purple flowers mixed in are just lovely. But! There’s also a very distracting and unwanted chocolate taste. Thus, my tea tragedy. :(
Rating based on what I could taste beyond the contamination.
Flavors: Floral, Flowers, Violet
Giving this the same rating I gave S&V’s violet tea because, well…it tastes the same. The violet overpowers the rose completely, and if there weren’t big pink rose petals in the dry mix, I’d think I was just drinking violet tea. I like violet, but I was hoping for something a little different, you know?
That said, it is visually a very pretty tea with all those rose petals. They just can’t compete with the strong violet flavor.
I had this tea last night and was really hoping to love this tea. I love the name and was thinking there might be some cedar or tree stuff in here like Whispering Pines does with their herbal brews.
Alas, when I brewed it up the hibiscus was front row and centre for me. I could taste hibiscus, rooibos & fruit in that order. Strange that when I look at the dry leaf, I don’t see hibiscus but it’s definitely there. I love the natural sweetness & woody flavour of rooibos but it was barely there beneath the hibiscus. This tea is not for me but thanks Allan for the sample.
Flavors: Fruity, Hibiscus, Rooibos
The fifth steeping was my final one, since the tea lost almost all flavor by this point. This was also evident in its nearly colorless liquor. I should note that each steeping time was increased by 15 seconds as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Also, although the fourth steeping still had much of the original flavor, I would not recommend going beyond the third steeping if one is to do justice to the original quality of this tea.
I did a second steeping and found this tea to remain quite rich still. Incidentally, I would not recommend pairing it with any greasy or heavy foods, as together it can be too much. Instead, light and cool desserts might pair best. I will attempt a third steeping and update.
Flavors: Butterscotch, Cream, Honeydew
Recently, as my tea palate has improved, I have grown very fond of oolongs, which always seem to have an astounding complexity of flavor that arises purely from the leaves and their processing, rather than added flavors. This tea is no exception. It has a strong, sweet aroma. It is creamy at the back of the throat and finishes very sweet, like cream and honeydew.
I’d recommend this to anyone interested in oolongs or green tea (it’s a very green oolong). It is a light, yet flavorful, and comforting cup of tea. I will update on multiple infusions.
Flavors: Butterscotch, Cream, Honeydew
The first thing I notice is the berry/floral sweetness. Not really so much the pepper, but maybe that’s because the peppercorns are whole and not much of their flavor is coming through. I guess that’s what that little something is in the background though. Kind of smoky/musty/I don’t know.
It’s an interesting tea. I can’t tell right away what kind of berry it’s supposed to taste like other than that this is berry-flavored, but it’s definitely good.
This is easily the first Simpson & Vail tea I’ve had that I like. It’s also the first one that tastes anything like it’s name to me.
The dominating note here is a strong almond flavor note. It’s definitely an almond extract type flavor, so if you’re not a fan of it I’d steer clear. The base is light, not entirely devoid of flavor, but mostly unremarkable. It is a smooth cup with no astringency, though and satisfying for what it is.