The Persimmon Tree Tea Company

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Recent Tasting Notes

70

Another reviewer said that this is the much better version of that not so great teabag tea you grew up drinking, and that is spot on. This is a very smooth black tea. It’s sweet, malty, not overly tanniny, and generally a pleasant way to start a morning if you’re just looking for a caffeine boost from plain black tea that isn’t trying to be anything other than that.

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84

I’ve had this tea for a while, and I think something was off with my set up, because every tea I tried had a weird soapy flavor that it no longer has. A friend stopped for the night at my place last night in the midst of his move to Boston and I offered tea. I took a chance on this instead of Yunnan White Jasmine (though I knew that would be a winner) because I wanted to show my guests an awesome unflavored tea, and I was hoping this would do.
Long story short, it was by far the best steeping I’ve gotten out of this tea, enough that I now feel comfortable giving it a relatively high rating.
For my future reference, I filled my travel gaiwan about a third full with leaves, heated water to 195 degrees and just kept brewing from the same kettle as it cooled. I started with a 5 seconds steep that was more of a rinse, and the flavor was barely there, just a hint of sweet florals. I had to coax my friend’s moving buddy to have a second cup, but after the second steep he kept holding out his cup for more! I also used the aroma cup set and it greatly enhanced the experience!
I increased my steeps by 5 seconds each time for a total of five steeps, the last of which was severly degraded, both in flavor and scent.
The second steep was much more nectar sweet and full of high florals and very strongly floral in the nose.
The third steep was even sweeter smelling, but the flavor was a little greener, with a little more body and a switch to a more stately rock sugar sweetness.
The fourth steep was when you could tell it was going down hill. The aroma cup was still full of sweet spring air, but the flavor was much flatter and a tad greener.
The last steep was a weaker version of the fourth steep in flavor and smell.
Overall, this is the best tea I’ve gotten for the amount I paid (50% off sale!) and I’m glad to have it in my cupboard!

Flavors: Floral, Sugar

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 3 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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84

Backlog from this crazy week…
I’m not going to rate this just yet, because I’m not confident yet in my home brewing setup, even though I have already had this twice.
First time:
Brewed gong fu style in my new lotus themed ru kiln travel set (which I absolutely adore, by the way). I used about two heaping teaspoons (around 3 g, maybe, my scale is for big things!), and I measure the gaiwan at 120 ml (4 oz) full up to the brim, but the cup only has 60 ml, and all but the first two steeps usually fit in it. The rinse tasted like minerally water, I think I steeped a total of 4 times starting with 10 seconds and going up 5 seconds each steep. The set keeps the tea really hot, so I had to wait a while to get any flavors out, but even then they were light. It was like very faintly floral hot water with unfiltered honey in it. Maybe I’m just not in the mood for plain sweet teas, but this one and the milk oolong I had last week just struck me a purely sweet, with not much else going on. I think I may actually be getting tired of unflavored oolongs, because that is like 90% of what I’ve been drinking lately.
Second time:
Western style in my new tiny 6 oz yellow teacup that I got a goodwill (and there were two, so one for home and one for the office!). Two 3 minute steeps, the first of which was more honey and the second of which had a slightly stronger floral and less sweet flavor than when I brewed this tea gong fu.
I still think I’m doing something wrong with this tea. It may just be that I’m not in the mood?

Flavors: Honey

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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77

First Sip Thought: “Camping night.”

Smell: Picture yourself outside on a chilly night surrounding a campfire with friends. Breathe in the air and you’ll get something similar to this tea’s scent. Much like a campfire, the smokiness aroma really hits you. It’s quite intense. I would recommend steeping this tea for the first time in an open area since the aroma may be overpowering compared to other teas you’re used to.

Taste: What makes this tea so unique is that the tea leaves have actually been smoked over pine needles. This is what gives it the very bold, but soothing, earthy flavour. The scent alone kept me away from trying this tea for a while probably because it was too heavy for my liking. I’m happy to say the tea itself is actually not bad. After steeping, you are left with a caramel brown type liquid. I have noticed that if you steep it a bit less, the woodsy flavour is more enjoyable as it is not has strong. A pine smoke flavour is quite predominant and I even get a hint of a bacon taste. I do not hate Lapsang Souchong but I think it would take some time before I can actually enjoy it as a beverage alone. What I do love is using Lapsang Souchong for baking or cooking! I think it has become one of my most favourite teas to use in the kitchen as I believe it is something easy to work with. I also imagine that is tea would be ideal for cheese pairing. Hello smoked cheddar…mmmmm. I had heard so much about this tea for a while that I just had to give it a try. I do not regret that I did. While this tea might not be for everyone I think it’s one that needs to be tried (at least once) by all.

www.theteacupoflife.com

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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70

First Sip Thought: “Less fennel more dandelion root, please.”

Smell: To put it simple, this tisane smells just what is is—seeds. The fennel seeds are quite strong in this aroma until you steep the tisane. Once steeped, the liquid is gold and the coriander seed scent begins to shine with a nice earthy aroma.

Taste: This tisane is a soothing and healing blend with citrusy notes. There is a mild spice kick during some sips but nothing too strong to be able to compare it to a chai. When I first requested this tisane I didn’t read the full list of ingredients until it came to my door. I saw organic dandelion root and got excited to order right away. I’m not a huge fan of fennel seeds and so I probably would have rated this tisane higher if it was without. I prepared this tea with no additives at first but tried it with some of The Persimmon Tree’s rock sugar the second time around and enjoyed it much better then as I felt the rock sugar helped control the overdose of fennel seeds I thought I was getting. However, the most prominent flavour in this blend for me was the coriander seed (the leaf of this seed’s plant is known as cilantro). All of the ingredients are organic and include health promoting properties especially when it comes to aiding in digestion to heal stomach pains. I would highly suggest this tisane as the perfect drink for after a large meal (ie. Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner) as it stays true to its name.

www.theteacupoflife.com

Preparation
7 min, 0 sec

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60

Brewed a cup of Green Caramel this morning. The dry leaf scent is sweet caramel and you can see the pieces of caramel mixed it. Brewed up, I was disappointed with the taste.. I felt that the rooibos taste came through much more than the caramel or green tea taste and threw off the balance.. This rates as a “meh..” on the taste-o-meter™.

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71

Another vanilla infused tea, another note about how too much vanilla can overpower the tea flavor.

I’m glad they chose a green tea as a base, since I couldn’t really taste the green tea. It seems that a more robust base would hold up to a strong flavor like this. I also really couldn’t taste any of the anise flavor that was supposed to be in there. Don’t get me wrong – I like the tea. I love vanilla. I just kinda wanted something more complex from this cup.

Flavors: Vanilla

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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75

Another steep of honeysuckle puerh from my work stash this week. It’s becoming my go-to work tea, since it’s easy and it’s in a cute little tin from Persimmon Tree. Great flavor and a nice everyday tea.

Phi

How honeysuckle is it?

kieblera5

it’s enough to notice, but not overly sweet.

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75

This tea smells very interesting – nothing like I would have assumed honeysuckle puerh would smell like. The dry leaf scent is kinda like molasses. The tea brews up very dark and tastes syrupy, fighting between wet forest notes of shou with the bright floral notes. The resulting taste is thick and a little sweet. I think it would be a good first step for someone who wants to know about puerh without really diving into it.

Flavors: Forest Floor, Maple Syrup, Molasses, Sweet, Wet Earth

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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This tastes very similar if not identical to the Coconut Cream white tea that I got from the Tea Gallerie in San Diego. I wonder if these two companies have the same supplier – or if one supplies to the other?

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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73

This is an amazing looking tea. The loose leaves are very picturesque. The smell and taste of the tea are overwhelmingly vanilla. Slight floral notes with a hint of citrus, but too much vanilla in this mix for it to be a home run.

Flavors: Citrus, Floral, Vanilla

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70

Mild coconut smell. Very pretty leaves of various colors. It tastes smooth and mildly like coconut. It’s slightly sweet. I think this would make a great dessert tea.

Preparation
2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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82

Yum, these tea leaves smell just like a bowl of mint chocolate chip ice cream. It definitely makes a good cup of dessert tea. It’s sweet, but not overwhelmingly so. I taste more mint than chocolate. It also leaves a bit of an Andies mint aftertaste. I like it!

Preparation
5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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80

Just looking at this tea brightened my day. My son and I spent over an hour dropping balls of tea into a cup, then pouring hot water over the top to make them bloom. My favorite part of the afternoon was watching him and the myriad of reactions he had as the tea blossomed. If he could talk he would probably tell you his favorite part of the afternoon was drinking the tea, he’s a bit of an addict, especially if the tea is sweet.

You can read the full review on my blog:
http://www.notstarvingyet.com/index/2015/4/7/tuesday-tea-sunshine-flowering-tea-the-persimmon-tree-tea-company

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 4 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML
Nichole

I just checked out your blog and my son will die over that dinosaur cake! I’m going to have to try that for his birthday this year! Very cool!

Short Sorceress

Thanks! It was a huge hit with my son, I made it for his 2nd birthday.

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Sample from whatshesaid. Thank you!

I brewed 3/4 of a teaspoon in 4 oz of water (a splash of cold water, the rest boiling) for 3 min. This tastes really odd to me. It smells quite a bit like coconut, but it tastes more like hay with a metallic almost coconut flavor. I don’t think I’m much of a fan, although the aftertaste is better than the flavor itself. I love coconut, but unfortunately I have yet to find a coconut tea I really like. It may be like peach for me, I love the real thing so much that I’m really picky about artificial versions.

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec 4 OZ / 118 ML
Anlina

Coconut teas are really hit or miss for me, though I’ve found a few that I really enjoy that combine coconut with other flavours.

I’ve yet to find a peach flavoured tea that I really enjoy, much as I adore fresh peaches. Natural peach notes in tea are as good as I’ve come across so far.

rosebudmelissa

Do you have any recommendations for me?

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87

Another good, solid chai. The spices are fresh and easy to distinguish, and the Assam black tea still comes through. Both the tea and the spices are a little stronger than the ones in the Tealated Chai I drank yesterday, but it’s good. This chai compares very well to that one. So, all of a sudden I’m finding pretty great chais! And once again, no artificial or natural flavorings.

Flavors: Cardamon, Cinnamon, Cloves, Ginger, Tea

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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80

Nothing terribly new or exciting about this puerh but it wasn’t bad either, especially for the price, a nice mellow woodsy aged puerh for an everyday day. A little floral but no hint of honeysuckle for me. :(

Flavors: Floral, Musty, Wet Earth, Wet Moss

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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78

This is the kind of tea I like to serve guests because it has a nice smooth flavor without any of the bitterness or astringency that my non-tea drinking guests dislike. It’s not the type of tea you’ll find me drinking late at night, instead I prefer it as an early morning tea or afternoon pick-me-up. It does pack a bit of a caffeine induced punch. Overall I think this is a great everyday tea that will suit a lot of tastes.

You can read the full review on my blog:
http://www.notstarvingyet.com/index/2015/3/10/tuesday-tea-assam-gold-the-persimmon-tree

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
K S

This is one of the few Assams I grab on purpose.

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50

(I believe this is from the Marco Polo TTB.)

This could be described as tasting like caramel, marshmallow, toasted rice, and earth. The rooibos imparts a woodsy flavor and there’s also something like damp leaves in the background. Not as unpleasant as it sounds. The green tea base, however, is atrocious. It’s like stewed grass. It’s like vegetables that have been left moist and out of the fridge for too long. I don’t know how else to describe it. It has a funk to it that’s just intolerable. If this blend had used a black tea base, or even oolong, I could probably get behind it. Unfortunately this is blended with a very rough, low grade green tea.

I was hoping this would be my last cup before bed, but now I’m going to make something else to get the taste (and the memory of the taste) out of my mouth.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Caramel, Earth, Grass, Marshmallow, Toasted Rice, Vegetal, Wet Earth

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This one doesn’t seem to have gotten much love on Steepster. This is another my wife picked. I thought strawberries and cream – yummy. Then I read the ingredients. I have had one black currant tea before this. Granted it was bagged but it was Ahmad who I normally trust to give me a pleasant bagged experience. I did not like it. I seldom like hibiscus in anything.

Then I opened the lid and sniffed. Hey this may not be so bad. Yeah it is rooibos but it smells like vanilla and cherries, or blueberries, or maybe grape. I never could decide. Doesn’t matter as none of those things are actually listed as ingredients.

I steeped for 5 minutes in a Finum basket using boiling water. The brew is dark like coffee but as you tilt the cup it looks more purplish red. That amused me. The white chocolate forms some scum on the surface that doesn’t hurt anything except the aesthetics.

The first sip was pleasant but much lighter than I expected. I added sweetener and the change is spectacular. I’m just going to quote my blog post on this rather than coming up with something new:

Once sweetened this came alive. The black currant and the hibiscus combine to give a taste that I can’t nail down but drifts between blueberry, cherry, and grape. I do taste just the slightest tartness but honestly it works here. This is creamy, probably from the white chocolate. I do taste the rooibos but it is not the main note. It adds to the overall mix with a touch of spicy sweetness.

I think I can best sum up my perception of this blend by telling you that I went into this review not expecting much from these ingredients. I thought, I’ll try to keep an open mind but will settle on just getting through it. I ended up gulping the last half of the cup down and can’t wait to have another. Surprisingly delicious.

OK, its me live again. This is one of those times when experimenting really paid off. You wouldn’t have a issue with adding a little salt to your supper, if it needed help bringing out the flavor, so don’t be afraid of a little sweetener when it is needed.

Starfevre

I’m actually really fond of this company. They make my favourite vanilla tea and are pretty good overall. Underrated, I think.

K S

Agreed. I can’t think of many companies that can take ingredients I don’t like and make something tasty out of them. Their self restraint is one of their biggest strengths. They generally use a lighter hand on the flavorings so you can actually taste the base.

gmathis

MMM. A little dairy with fruit is sometimes a good pepper-upper.

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I see I never added a note for this one after posting my blog review. I think it is because Amanda ‘SoggyEnderman’ Wilson did such a great job explaining it.

Agreeing with everything she said, I’ll just add, I liked it but don’t ever see me craving it. It tastes like just what it is, a cup of seeds and spices. That is fine. It just isn’t for me.

However, let me point out this is one my wife chose. She was in the tin 3 times before I could get to it for a review. She loves herbals and picked this specifically for the coriander. I tried to get her to review it but she declined.

The Persimmon Tree uses all natural and organic ingredients and my wife loves it. That my friends is why there are a million different blends. Some you love some you don’t. Only about 999, 011 more left before I try them all! I made that number up. I really have no idea how many I’ve tried. Let’s just say a lot.

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80

Needed some sort of caffeine-free fix tonight, and none of my sweet rooibos teas sounded appealing, so a spicy chai it is!
Ahh this one is lovely! Taken from the Marco Polo TTB

Great balance of spice, and a touch of sugar to pull the flavours out brought it all together :) The liquor is such a deep red, and it’s nice! Definitely doesn’t have that full black chai flavour, but this rooibos chai seems to do the trick. Hmm.. I don’t seem to taste the vanilla though. Just the rooibos and chai.

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72

This cup of tea can be securely filed under “pleasant”. Nothing too flashy, just a gentle, almost floral vanilla, and a somewhat delicate base. Really nice afternoon cuppa.
Thanks to Ost for letting me try this. I’m enjoying all the samples!

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