Tea Forte

Recent Tasting Notes

80
drank Oasis by Tea Forte
12 tasting notes

A mingling of two scents greeted me when I opened the Oasis canister: clean and grassy green tea, and… lemon? Yes, lemon flavoring may be listed as the final ingredient, but it permeates more than the floral notes do. I wouldn’t describe it as overpowering, but for someone who’s not a huge lemon fan it wasn’t a welcome surprise. The leaves of Oasis are appealing to look at, though. The blend is like a miniature flower garden, a bed of dark green with lots of yellow (marigold) and bits of blue (cornflower) and rose.

When brewed as instructed and without sweetener, Oasis produces a beautiful golden-yellow brew with a hint of green. The green tea, floral, and citrus scents balanced out, giving the drink an earthy yet sweet aroma. It’s such a harmony that any worries I’d had about a lemon-dominated tea dissipated with the steam – and so I took my first sip.

Balance continues to be the key as you taste Oasis. The green tea undertones allow the other flavors, particularly rose and lemon, to poke through, so you get a little bit of everything that Tea Forté promises. Altogether the tea is light, mellow, and smooth, with a subtle sweetness and a tangy, slightly acidic finish. It reminds me of summertime, of sitting on the back porch just after the grass has been cut and relishing the bright colors of blooming flowers. Not tropical by any means, but it still offered the “oasis” state of mind I was seeking, only in a different way.

Oasis is a delicate tea, so be careful when brewing. It can grow bitter if the water’s too hot or if you let it steep too long. Keep it to the recommended 2- to 3-minute timeframe to get the flowery, soothing cup that Tea Forté intended.

Read the full review here: http://bibliophilesreverie.com/2014/06/18/tea-forte-oasis-green-tea/

Flavors: Grass, Lemon, Rose, Tangy

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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82
drank Peach Brulée by Tea Forte
4550 tasting notes

Backlog:

This was yum! I still have some in the cupboard, I might have to indulge in a cup tomorrow. I like that the black tea base is a bold tasting black tea. The reason for the bold flavor is that it’s a pan-roasted Assam base and it is what makes this blend so awesome! The notes of malt from the tea, the rich, robust flavor, and the pan-roasting gives this tea a roasty flavor that is almost reminiscent of a rich coffee. Only it’s better than coffee because it’s tea.

The peach notes do not overpower the black tea base, and I like that too. Notes of peach, mango and a subtle hint of coconut. Of these flavors, the peach is the most prominent, with the mango weaving its way in and out of the sip and the coconut is very delicate, most noticeable in the aftertaste than during the sip.

A really lovely tea.

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67

Brewed this for my little sick guy. He hated it whilst I didn’t mind much. Wouldn’t buy it, but as a free sample it delivered for my boy’s illeness; put him right to bed.

AnnaEA

I always had to add honey and milk to chamomile for my daughter.

Christopher F.

@AnnaEA, Agreed, can’t have chamomile without honey!

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67

It’s supposed to be a chamomile/lemon/ mint blend, but for me it was just an unorganised mess of tastes and smells. Granted-herbal teas/blends, aren’t my thing; in fact if the missus hadn’t have gotten me this from the hotel, I would’ve been content to have never had this. It’s ok, but I wouldn’t get any more.

Add in some honey and it’s acceptable, as the honey masks the mess of flavors

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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82
drank Chamomile Citron by Tea Forte
354 tasting notes

I’ve been having trouble sleeping lately… This one helps a lot. I know most of the same ingredients are in Sleepytime tea, but for some reason, the proportions of the ingredients are better in this one. I think the lemon balm makes the biggest difference. It’s smooth and slightly tart, but the sweetness of the chamomile and licorice root balance it out and keep it from tasting acidic.

Plus, it makes me yawn as I drink it. Once I finished the cup, I felt all warm and ready for bed.

Glad I dug this one out from the back of the tea shelf at TJ Maxx! Bumping up my rating.

Flavors: Citrus, Flowers, Hibiscus, Lemon Zest, Licorice

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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82
drank Chamomile Citron by Tea Forte
354 tasting notes

All I can taste is mint and hibiscus. With a small whisper of chamomile in the aftertaste.

Hibiscus ruins everything, man. Total buzzkill.

This is good for a bedtime blend, because it has all the right ingredients to put someone right to sleep, but I wouldn’t drink it for the taste.

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72

It’s apple! Sweeter than other apple spice teas I have tried. A solid robust fresh tea that does not taste artificial.

Flavors: Apple, Cinnamon, Pepper

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C

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60

A sample from ashleyelizabeth. I gave this one 5 minutes in boiling water, and added a splash of milk. I like coconut, and coconut teas in general, and I also like chai, so this one seemed a good bet on a cold morning. The scent of this one dry, and while brewing, is heavenly. The coconut scent is strong and true to life, and deliciously creamy. Fortunately, the same is true of the brewed tea. The main flavour is definitely coconut; slightly toasted coconut, with a milky-creaminess about it. The spices come out second, quite strongly and suddenly. It’s a trinity of ginger, black pepper, and liquorice in the main, with maybe a hint of cinnamon and clove around the edges. The pepper I like, oddly, perhaps because it’s a warming, spicy contrast to the creamy, milky coconut. The ginger works well too. The only thing that’s spoiling this one for me is the liquorice – while it sweetens the blend, it also leaves a fake, over sweet taste (like splenda) at the back of my throat. The tea base (which I assume is black) is also a little weak for me to really be able to get behind this as a chai blend.

I enjoyed this cup, but on the whole it’s not one I’d look to try again. There are other chai blends I like more (although the coconut in this one is so good, that’s a hard thing to say). If it had a stronger base and no liquorice, I’d probably like it a whole lot more. As it stands, though, it’s one I can live without.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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47
drank Blueberry Merlot by Tea Forte
297 tasting notes

Blueberry is tricky. Easy in pie tough in tea. I feel like most of the time it’s not strong enough compared with the other ingredients. The first flavor to hit my tongue is blueberry but it immediately gets sucker punched by sage and then kicked in the groin by the hibiscus to make it be just a henchmen. Never had sage in a tea before. It’s interesting but to me it just doesn’t quite fit. This also doesn’t remind me of merlot but of some type of fruity side dish.

Preparation
1 tsp

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drank Swiss Apple by Tea Forte
102 tasting notes

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65
drank Sweet Orange Spice by Tea Forte
121 tasting notes

The boyfriend surprised me when the dog and I got back from our morning walk. He went, “I thought this one would go well with breakfast!” As he plates eggs and bacon for the two of us. This may be because we had a sort of heated conversation last night, lol.

On to the tea:
He was right, it did go well with breakfast. Perfect for a fall-ish morning. I don’t quite think it is fall here in Missouri yet but it was less than 50 degrees on the walk so it’s coming. It smelled of cinnamon and had a pleasant taste. I am happy that I enjoyed a black tea but don’t think I will be ordering more of it.

Terri HarpLady

At first when I read this, I thought it said, My boyfriend surprised me with a dog…
So I’m thinking…cool, what kind of dog was it?
Once I got to the part about the dog going well with breakfast, I knew I’d missed something. :)
:)

Kayla

Ha :)
Grammar has never been my strong suit!

Terri HarpLady

I think it was of an issue of me being kind of dyslexic when I first wake up :)

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85
drank Cucumber Mint by Tea Forte
42 tasting notes

I got some sample packs of this tea a while ago and set them aside, because I hate cucumber. But today I had an upset stomach and this was the first mint tea I could find in my stash, so I gave it a shot. I was pleasantly surprised! Not sure I really got any cucumber at all, unless that was what accounted for the clean flavor of the tea. Not overly minty either, but a pleasant amount. Pleasant!

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40

Well….it’s good? I guess? I don’t know. I had such high hopes for tasting rhubarb because I thought that would be neat, but the hibiscus really overshadowed that for me. Then, I thought at least maybe I’d get enough good peach flavor to make me happy, since that’s one of my favorite tea flavors….but…not so much. Oh well. I’ll try another Tea Forte sample the next time my co-worker gets some, but I wouldn’t buy any myself.

Flavors: Hibiscus

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49
drank White Ambrosia by Tea Forte
113 tasting notes

Last day dogsitting, last day to sample my sisters tea collection. And let’s be honest, there isn’t a lot of “tea” here. There is a lot of herbal things, and some of them even have a bit of tea in them.

This is a white tea with vanilla and coconut. The aroma is just that. Vanilla and coconut. This would be great for people that don’t like tea. Don’t get me wrong, it smells really good. But then I taste it.

The taste is dry and a bit on the bitter side. The vanilla disapears as soon as it enters my mouth, and the coconut just doesn’t go well with the remaining tiny hint of white tea.

Remember those old bitter beer face commercials? Yup.

Flavors: Coconut, Fruity, Vanilla

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 6 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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73
drank African Solstice by Tea Forte
113 tasting notes

I am a big fan of rooibos, and not a huge fan of outside flavors in my tea. Maybe I’m an elitist. Or maybe I just have a more traditional taste. Any way, here we have a rooibos with berries added. Let’s see…

Aroma is primarily berries, but the underlying rooibos smoothness is still present. Taste is similar. It is certainly a rooibos, with that distint smooth, satisfying taste and feel. The berries are very prominant, but not quite to the point that they are overwhelming. I would personally like more rooibos taste in the balance, but this does work.

The problem with many of these boutique tea companies is that they don’t trust the taste of their tea, and feel the need to bury it with flavors that should just be a hint, a helpful addition to compliment the tea itself, not to be a primary flavor. This comes close. Any more berry covering up the rooibos, and it would be overdone.

Flavors: Berries

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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72
drank Jasmine Green by Tea Forte
113 tasting notes

Yet another, the third this morning, sampling from the Tea Forte collection box. Here we go.

The aroma is wonderful. Classic Jasmine Green. I’m picky about teas like this, because so many companies add too much crap to classic, simple ideas. The aroma on this suggests otherwise. Strong, big and bold, earthy, nutty, grassy aroma.

First taste is the same. Subtle, very well balanced, very drinkable. The Jasmine pops out with that grassy, nutty taste, while not overwhelming and hiding the wonderful earthy undertones. The taste keeps getting bigger from there, but never goes unbalanced.

This isn’t the best Jasmine Green I’ve tasted, but I am impressed by the amount of in your face taste while still keeping the super drinkable well balanced overall appeal. It’s on the verge of being over the top, but not quite. Great Jasmine Green.

Flavors: Earth, Grass, Nuts

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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70
drank Black Currant by Tea Forte
113 tasting notes

The 2nd sampling from the Tea Forte collection box.

The first reaction is Damn, it’s a good thing I like blackberries, the aroma is almost overwhelming with them. It is a reallly good aroma. Aside from the strong blackberry smell, there is also a hint of nuts and a bit of spice feel. You have to really search to find them.

The taste is all fruit. The blackberries take over, hiding everything else, even the underlying black tea base. I would love to have more balance in this case. After all, if I wanted hot blackberry juice, I would have that. I like black tea, and there just isn’t even a hint of it here.

Other than the balance, this is a damn good tea. The blackberry taste is smooth, soothing and super yummy. Probably a great afternoon tea, maybe during a rainstorm with a book open. Good stuff.

Flavors: Blackberry

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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62
drank Earl Grey by Tea Forte
113 tasting notes

Dog sitting thjs weekend, which means checking out my sisters tea collection. She isn’t as much of a tea fanatic as I am, but she does have the Tea Forte and Tazo box collections, so all is not lost.

The first up is Tea Forte’s Earl Grey. Here we go:

I am a fan of Earl Grey. As a Star Trek fan, I loved when Picard ordered his Tea, Earl Grey, hot. I have had good and great Earl Greys, bad ones, boring ones and overdone ones.

So far, this one is good, but dangerously close to being overdone. The aroma is good, with that classic fresh, fruity, refreshing smell, but on the subtle side. The initial taste is memorable Earl Grey. Warm, welcoming, refreshing, with that fruity, slightly earthy, complex taste and feel. This one has a hint of smoke as well. The secondary taste is where the problem is. Spice? Really? A spiced Earl Grey? So American. I guess I just don’t like spiced teas.

This is definitely a step above the average mass produced Earl Grey, but not the best I’ve had. The complexity works against the basic flavor, like they tried too hard to make it interesting instead of just making it good. There is something extra in here, something unnessesary, something adding more of a spice taste. Without it, whatever it is, I would like this much more.

Flavors: Fruity, Spices, Sweet

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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Herbal Traveling Tea Box

Took this from the box since my sinuses have been a disaster the last few days. I don’t know what has been blooming but I needed something to help clear them out (even after using my neti pot). We were about to meet some friends for brunch so I needed something quick and this worked well. One bag in about 12oz of boiling water. Surprisingly drinkable without sweetener but not sure I’d purchase. I already have a quite substantial supply of decaf chai at the moment and this isn’t particularly unique.

Cheri

Ragweed season started here this week. Yuck.

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80
drank Chamomile Citron by Tea Forte
24 tasting notes

I really like the lemon, one of the first GOOD lemon-y teas I’ve had. No artificial taste. Would be great as an after dinner tea because it’s sweet too. Not overpowering though. Like a butter mint.

Flavors: Lemongrass, Sweet

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75
drank Blood Orange by Tea Forte
254 tasting notes

Finding a single steeps sampler package from Tea Forte was a nice surprise. Finding the sampler package was of their latest Noir line of pan-roasted black teas was even more surprising. The best surprise was finding a blood orange flavor hidden amongst the other mediocre flavored teas.

From what I can recall, the best blood orange tea I have so far had was from David’s Tea, which was a pu’erh blend. Reminiscing on that blend, I do remember liking it quite a lot, namely for its flavor.

Tea Forte’s blood orange does give quite a powerfully citrus scent, leaning more to pekoe for my liking but not so much to become offensive. The leaves are thankfully generic loose leaf in appearance and color, with the citrus peel and flowers giving a lighter and softer texture.

This is my second time steeping this tea, as my first had given a fairly weak flavor at three minutes, so increasing the steep time with new leaves could yield a better brew.

The brew is a lovely deep copper, with a subtle citrus aroma.

The flavor is a lighter pekoe, more bergamot than citrus. Despite, the citrus that is detected jumps out significantly. Steeping a minute longer does give a more interesting taste. There is a slight astringency, and the black tea does round out the flavor eventually.

It is not quite the best, in fact quite far from it. What it is, in the best circumstances, is a pleasing morning cup.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 14 OZ / 414 ML

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drank Black Cherry by Tea Forte
379 tasting notes

More leaf, longer steeping time.

What I’m getting is watery liquorice and nothing else. I don’t know if I got an old tin and that’s why I’m not getting much of the base, but the liquorice gives it a coughsyrupy mouth-feel almost. I didn’t think it’d be this prominent in the blend—I figured it was there as a touch of sweetness and to better round out the ‘cherry’ taste. Don’t know if it’s just me, so I won’t rate this.

Heck, with 50 grams I’d probably consider trading it off so other people could see what they think of it.

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drank Black Cherry by Tea Forte
379 tasting notes

I tend to avoid Tea Forte like the plague. It’s everywhere, but every runin I’ve had with them has been poor; during the Christmas season I’ve picked up their sample packs and hated every one (I don’t even know if I even bothered to review them!); I don’t know, it was something about the base maybe, or how they chose to flavour them.

I picked up Orchid Vanilla a little while back because it was on sale half off, didn’t have horrible reviews on Steepster, and really, who could fuck up Vanilla. That one turned out pretty pleasant, so when I saw this in the window I decided ‘why not’.

Plus they redesigned the package—it’s part of Tea Forte’s “Noir” collection, with pan-roasted black teas (back of the tin says assam).

I’ll start by saying this doesn’t taste like an assam. But if it’s ‘pan-roasted’ (???), that might be it, but I’m getting no roasted flavours either. There’s a soft hint of vanilla maybe, and it smells faintly of strawberry and cough-syrup cherry… Might be getting a bit of fake cherry taste as well, or maybe that’s the liquorice.

For that matter, there’s a warning at the end of the ingredients about how the tea should be avoided by people with high blood pressure due to the use of organic liquorice root. What? I thought in this day and age, the glycyrrhizic acid in liquorice that /causes/ hypertension, was usually artificially removed from from most liquorice products (for this very reason), or replaced with artificial flavouring/fennel or anise. So was Tea Forte just a little slow on the origin of their root, or did they actually source un-deglycyrrhizinated liquorice, and the FDA didn’t frown on them?

At any rate, I might try more leaf next time/longer steep, because this fell utterly flat for me. I think I’m getting something like astringency and bitterness, plus liquorice. Almost three whole ounces. Lovely. Learned my lesson, I guess. Still, I’ll come back to this one.

Preparation
4 min, 0 sec

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drank Blueberry Merlot by Tea Forte
422 tasting notes

HHTTB #11/18

I didn’t realize this was a herbal tea for some reason. I also didn’t realize it had hibiscus. It is a fruity hibiscus mix that is a nice cup for the evening. Nothing I need to own, but a nice cup.

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