The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf

Recent Tasting Notes

40

I purchased this Vanilla Earl Grey limited edition at Amazon.com, unaware that it had been created specifically for Amazon by The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf. There was some sort of promo, and somehow I ended up paying about $8 for six cans. Now they are selling exactly the same thing for $35. It seemed like a good gamble at the time, given my love of Earl Grey cream teas.

So the tea. From appearances, this should be fantastic: full-leaf single estate Ceylon along with an abundance of dried rose petals! There are also chunks of unknown stuff. I wish that I could figure out what they are, since they look like neither bergamot nor vanilla to me. What else could they be?

Artificial flavoring numbers among the ingredients, and unfortunately I find the scent a bit overwhelming. This does not smell like roses or vanilla. It smells like something else. I was hoping that the aroma would evaporate off and I’d be left with a lovely Vanilla Earl Grey. Sadly, the aroma is also a strong flavor.

I have had negative experiences with this company before in the past. They use a lot of artificial ingredients which seem to ruin otherwise good compositions. I’ll pass on their deals at Amazon in the future. I drank this glass but did not enjoy it very much. I’ve been spoiled by so many excellent pure teas of late. The superficial charms of flavored blends are becoming less and less appealing to me, and all the more when they boast black box artificial ingredients which do not add to but detract from the taste of the tea itself.

Fortunately, I love the sleek tins. I’ll be peeling off the labels and using them for more noble teas.

Perhaps Jeff Bezos should consider reining in his hyperactive diversification activities. Drones, the Washington Post, $500 million dollar contracts with the CIA, “My Habit”(a social-shopping company), limited edition teas? What next?

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 15 sec 2 g 10 OZ / 295 ML
MzPriss

I am stopping my Amazon dealings over this last business with not listing books by a certain publisher because they want a better deal.

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80

Grabbed a loose leaf tin of this at the San Jose store, and am glad I did. It’s a mild chai, smooth and mellow, with a hint of vanilla. I might be slightly biased here, as I bought it from a lovely young gent that told me I’d have to come back to try more… just to have my tell him I live in Vancouver, Canada, and that the trip I just returned from might be my last to that specific area.

Flavors: Cardamon, Cinnamon, Clove, Vanilla

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Suziqzer

Fingers crossed that he’s there if you go back ;)

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79

Odd how the reviews for this are quite poor, yet I had it iced the other day in-house at one of the San Jose stores, and I really liked it. Couldn’t even taste the rooibos, found it sweet even with zero sweetener, and lightly spiced. I’d definitely have more if I were to find myself in that same parking lot in the middle of nowhere again.

Preparation
Iced 12 OZ / 354 ML

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Tried another iced tea at the local Coffee Bean. The tea base was rather bitter and didn’t have distinguishing qualities, and I’m not sure whether that was due to variations in in-store preparation, or the quality of the tea itself. Or maybe, as the name suggests, it was meant to be imbibed with a heaping amount of sugar. The rose fragrance was distinct, but didn’t really improve the experience. At any rate, the Pacific Coast blend is a much better example of a good iced tea from this brand.

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88

Had this while out enjoying the beautiful weather today. It turned out to be one of the best coffeeshop iced teas I’ve tried. It has a clean, robust, fragrant flavor. There are no additives or other ingredients, and the tea has a natural, unmistakeable fruity sweetness somewhere between peach and muscat, with a touch of smokiness.

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84

This is really good for a bagged chamomile. I’ve found that bagged ones especially can be harsh, but this one is sweet and mellow. It tastes like it should but it’s not sharp at all. Again, I’m impressed with these bags! Much better than I expected.

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72

Well, I’m at the hotel! They had bags of this so I decided I might as well try it. The coffeemaker in the room isn’t what I’m used to so I can’t be sure about the temperature, but this isn’t too bad for a breakfast tea. There’s a strong honey flavor to it that I really like. There’s a little bit of bitterness but it’s not bad enough to stop me from finishing the cup. Not bad, hotel!

Anna

Yes! Hotel tea bags!

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90

I found this tea to be unexpectedly sweet, with flavors contrary to what you might normally have in a winter themed tea (e.g. no Chai). Personally, I didn’t find the spices overpowering. Each spice complimented the other well. If anything, the tea is a little too sweet. Reminds me of a potpourri.

I would not recommend adding milk product to this tea; The spice blend is enough by itself.

Preparation
3 g 10 OZ / 295 ML

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60

Ingredients
Thai oolong tea, Chinese green tea, Ceylon black tea, lemon balm, diced blueberries,
freeze dried blueberries, natural and artificial flavorings

oolong + green + black ? too much.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 g 5 OZ / 147 ML

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77

This was nice and hearty for my breakfast tea while waiting for a flight last week. The bag was a pyramid sachet, which was part of why I thought it might have been originally Harney & Sons. That and they had an Anniversary Blend tea on the menu along with some other names that reminded me of H&S. But then again, there are only so many tea names out there, I suppose. :)

This tea was hearty, bold and tasty. Well worth it.

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75

I had this as my second cup while waiting for my flight home from Vegas last Tuesday. It reminded me quite a bit of the Harney Apricot black but not quite as good. Could always have to do with steeping parameters, etc. since I wasn’t making this. :)

It was good. And it was in a sachet rather than a standard bag which was a nice surprise. It was worth the price I paid for it. Not really bitter but not amazingly smooth either. Good flavor.

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95

This tea is just amazing! I ordered it online and I’m glad that I did. It is a strong blend so I find that it’s delicious with the little bit of sugar and cream.

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60

At my Aunt’s place and SHE EXPANDED HER TEA COLLECTION. Now she actually has tea sachets. Aww I’m proud :‘)
Went for this tea because I wanted Genmaicha right now. I’ve had Genmaicha before, and I love it so much! This just tastes.. okay compared to the one that I have back home. Dude. The one I have back home I bought in Japan in Epcot so it’s legit and nothing can compare.
This is pretty good though so yes yes I like :)

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100

I’m absolutely in LOVE with this tea. I purchased a tin online and I can’t get over how fabulous it is!! I love the bite of spice and aroma is Heavenly. I add sugar and a bit of cream to cut down the sometimes bitterness. I wouldn’t want to steep for too long as it tends to be a bit bitter if you do. I’m almost done with one tin and I purchased a second tin!! Yum!!

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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98

This is my favorite tea in the world. Keeps me going and helps with hunger

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C

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91

Another sachet pilfered from the hotel room by the other half for me.

This tea is unexpectedly sweet! It tastes very fresh, even though it’s only a teabag. Very full-bodied and packed with flavor. It brews a nice rich brown color, and its mouthfeel is surprisingly thick and savory.

I only wish I had more than two of these…

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This is a nice bagged chamomile. Sweet, smooth, fragrant. Everything you’d expect!

My other half brought a few of these bags back from a hotel room for me. Isn’t that sweet? :)

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100

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85

Just had a cup of this while powering through my paper corrections. It’s just like Christmas in a cup! Hands-down the best mood enhancer -

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