Popular Teas from Utopia TeaSee All 34 Teas
Recent Tasting Notes
Since I’ve posted some less than stellar reviews of some other utopia teas, I need to post a positive one when given the opportunity. And this is the opportunity. My name is Amy, and I’m addicted to this tea.
It’s a strange tea. It’s cinnamonny, almond, roasty, a slight citrus sweetness, and a somewhat burnt flavor in there too. The black tea base is a nice balance to all the flavors. I honestly find myself craving this tea. And then once I have it, it’s all i can drink for the rest of the day. Nothing else sounds good. I just want more. When I pull it out to have a cup, I’ve already decided that there will be no other teas that day.
I’ve read comparisons of this to Brioche. It’s nothing like Brioche. Brioche is delicious in a “how could you not love this?” way. While I enjoy this tea, I can see how some people don’t. But I also drink it way more than I drink brioche. Not because I like it more, but I honestly crave it. There’s something dark and bit dirty about it. The only comparable tea would be Butiki’s almond indulgence on steroids.
Of all my flavored teas (which has recently been reduced in a massive way), I drink this way more than anything else.
This came as a sample with my Utopia order awhile back and I decided to pull it out today because I could really use the caffeine. I was up until 4am and then only managed 4 hours of sleep before my toddler woke me up for breakfast. I’ll have to look for something else to drink though, I dumped this one out, it was very astringent. No amount of water or sugar made it drinkable.
This was a freebie Utopia sent me, forgot to cupboard it here, whoops. After so many unsuccessful apple teas I decided to straightaway only try this cold steeped, and I must say it’s really good that way, and perfect for the season—it’s like light, subtle cider, but with more going on, a warmth and fig-jamminess that’s great. Thirst-quenching and tasty. Even so I’m not sure I’ll try what’s left hot…you know me.
Tea #6 from Another Traveling Tea Box
This one I was trying purely on the name since I didn’t get much of any sort of smell from the bag that I’d associate with the named tea. Mostly I was getting scents from other teas from the box, so I hope this didn’t get contaminated.
Brewed this had a cinnamon-y smell with a vaguely cookie/bakey kinda hint tossed in there? It was kinda hard to tell scent wise even though I practically inhaled the tea through my nose. (please note I don’t recommend doing this. Lol!)
Taste wise I get cinnamon and something kinda almond/nutty but it doesn’t really taste like much else sadly. I kinda get a decent black tea under everything else. But for me it was pretty unremarkable and blah. Maybe trying with 2 tsp or 2 1/2tsp might give it more ‘oomph’, but I’ll leave that for someone else to try.
This tea isn’t one I would have normally purchased for myself since I’m not a huge fan of toffee, but I received a free ounce of it with my last order. It also has the dubious distinction of currently being the oldest tea I own and seeing that it is only about 4 months old that means I’ve made some real progress drinking down my stash.
Flavor-wise the brewed tea is sweeter than I prefer, but I think it would rock as a latte so I’ll have to try that next. You can definitely taste the caramelized but not quite burnt taste of the toffee, the nuttiness of the hazelnut, and the chocolate; although, I wish the chocolate stood out just a little bit more.
My biggest complaint about this tea is the oily residue it leaves over everything. I had to scrub my ingenuiTEA and cup twice before I was sure it was clean.
I thought it would be fun to do a side-by-side, haven’t done one of those in a long time (and I had my alphabetized “control group-standard” tea cups out anyway). And I’m wired from all the pu erh (Yowza! Definitely a “one serving resteeped all morning’ll do ya” thing) so no-cafs are the only option. So here we go. This versus Butiki Root Beer Float Honeybush, as Stacy was kind enough to give me a sample with my last order. It’s not entirely a fair comparison in that Utopia’s is rooibos and Butiki’s is honeybush (a less distracting base, I find), and Butiki’s is meant to be a float and Utopia’s is simply labeled root beer. But! I will just try to keep those factors in mind.
Dry, Utopia has a much stronger root beer, barky/rooty-soda (think birch beer, sarsaparilla, sassafras)-type smell. Steeping, it’s spicier smelling upfront too, though that dwindles the longer it steeps. Even though it doesn’t aim to be like a float, it has a lot of vanilla, as root beer tends to anyway. Butiki’s steeping aroma, while more subdued, has a specific black pepper-y note I dig though.
Onto the taste! Since I’m guessing Butiki’s is going to be subtler, I’ll start with that one. It tastes good and smells even better. It is surprisingly a bit thick on the tongue for a no-caf, which I like. After a couple sips I added a little sugar as recommended (I just about always find the precise recommendations for Butiki’s teas dead-on helpful, so I always follow them). That brings out the soda quality more, somehow making it taste a little fizzy. The creamy float quality comes in at the end of the sip; it’s subtle, but the vanilla is a delicious one. As it cools, it gets much creamier and is really yummy.
Utopia’s is a lot stronger and spicier, still surprisingly thick and a tad creamy, and sweeter in a chemical-y way. It has a hard to describe aftertaste, first chemical-y and a little unwelcome but eventually seguing into licorice root sweetness. I have to say I’m really impressed with how little I taste the rooibos (I don’t mind rooibos really, but I’ve noticed it can be hard to tamp down enough to keep from distracting from intended flavorings…it’s a very distinct thing that, once you notice is hard to ignore). The spiciness and strength of Utopia’s evokes the aforementioned more unusual rooty beers, stuff like sassafras and sarsaparilla.
I’m not terribly surprised at the results here—Butiki’s being softer, subtler, but delicious; Utopia’s being sharper, very bold and kind of spicy if a little chemical—but am pleased to learn I like both and would drink either or both again happily. Good to know as it saves me some sugar, as I’m unwilling to drink diet root beer. (:
Tea #37 from Another Traveling Tea Box
This looks almost exactly like (ATR’s) Brioche! Not quite the same taste (or concept, really).
There’s definitely a roasty cookie element, and strong almond flavor. There’s some astringency to the base, and very mild bitterness until it cools. I find myself preferring Georgia Tea Co. Almond Cookie and California Tea House’s Almond Butter.
I’d take Brioche before any of them, though.
Seems I never added to this my cupboard when I received it ’cause it was a (crazy generous—they gave me a full 1oz bag!) free sample.
I’ve been embracing the notion of starting the day with brisk tea now that it’s cooler and darker and harder to want to get out of bed (in the summer, I usually don’t make a cup of tea until after lunch). I feel like I stumbled upon the ultimate Holy Grail version—Butiki’s The Black Lotus—but it’s SO good and so special I don’t want to over-rely on it only to get burned out (quelle horreur!) or just plain not be able to afford it or ruin my ability to ever tolerate anything else, ha. And I do love these kinds of teas generally when done right. So I’m going to clear out all my EBs and similar brisk morning teas this season, I think. This randomly called out to me first today.
And I’m glad it did! It’s really good. I know I must be imagining it but it feels like there’s the lightest bit of bergamot or something in it. Something clean and slightly floral, zesty. Probably just citrus peel but whatever it is, it’s delicious to smell and drink. And this is nicely balanced, bold and woody-astringent (tastes like there’s darjeeling or ceylon in this) but with a sweetness too, and that clean floral feeling that makes the astringency more palatable. There are some toasty malty qualities right at the tiptop of it, just enough to notice at all. For me, that’s great (I like malt but I also like what I tend to put on the other end of the spectrum out of personal history not actual taste accuracy necessarily, that light drying woodiness). I didn’t add milk or sugar and really enjoyed it. Looking forward to more (and touched Utopia gave me so much there can be a lot more!).
Tea #27 from Another Traveling Tea Box
My immediate reaction when opening the bag was ‘Please oh please be as good as you smell.’ And while it’s not that good, it is really pleasing.
The strawberry in here is perfect. It’s juicy, sweet with a bit of sharp strawberry zip, and most of all it’s subtle. The whole cup is really subtle and subdued while remaining insanely indulgent. I don’t get any chemical aftertaste from the chocolate, and the saffron keeps the whole cup from pushing into ‘too sweet’ territory.
This is the tea that makes all the tea I’ve filtered through today worth it!
Hey Steepster! Long time no see. I got a HUGE tea box from TastyBrew and there was a big bag of this in it. The aroma is strong. Warm, melty chocolate notes with a nice nutty/toffee aroma. The flavor is nice. It has a nice chocolate flavor and then the hazelnut comes in. The toffee lends a bit of sweetness. There is rice crispy things in it and I feel like there is a nice hint of rice. I like this tea but I like the aroma of it more :) thanks again!
My last backlog for this evening. (OK, ok, so it’s 3:41 in the morning. I’m a night owl.)
An interesting blend. I wasn’t too happy to find that there was hibiscus in this but it does OK in this blend … it’s not overdone, it’s just enough to enhance the berry tones but not so much that it comes off as syrupy or too tart.
The litchi and the raspberry are surprising buddies in this tea … I wouldn’t have thought to pair the two fruits together, but they work well together. The litchi doesn’t taste off (as sometimes it can) I think that the raspberry gives it balance.
Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/06/04/little-litchi-raspberry-black-tea-blend-from-utopia-tea/
This tea would certainly be a nice tea to have in summer as it is bright and citrusy, and at times references hard candy and bubble gum to me before opening into a bright floral rose.
The dry leaf smells kind of like tart candy and contains a blend of teas (with green tea most apparent) some rose buds and is scattered with a few pieces of dried buds.
The brewing instructions in the package suggest brewing it for two to three minutes at boiling. I used water at the higher end of the scale that I use for greens and brewed for about a minute and a half, and the tea was slightly bitter and a little astringent, so I suggest using lower temperatures and brewing for shorter time periods. The flavouring is quite strong and I don’t think that you would miss much by using shorter brew times.
However once brewed the tea smelled very fruity, with citrus, mixed with an under ripe mango, combined with rose, and that sweet fruity spicy smell of some green teas.
The tea despite its slight bitterness tasted refreshing and bright, with lemon citrus over a peach mango mixed with lemony rose spice. The base tea flavour was relatively hidden, though It might be contributing to both the fruitiness and the spice. The nice bright flavour, does remind me of the flavour of some hard candies but in a pleasant way.
The second steep was brewed at a lower temperature and was less bitter. The rose and fruit had a flavour that referenced some old
fashioned bubble gums at first than expanded strongly into the flavour of fresh bright rose.
Thanks Utopia tea for including this tea as a gift with my order!
I decided to lower my rating a little. This tea uses the same chocolate flavoring that I’m really starting to dislike. I do still think it is worth trying though, it is a very interesting chocolate strawberry blend. I love how the strawberry manages to be sweet and tart, just like a real strawberry. It is easier to pick this out while the tea is hot, as it cools to room temperature all I really notice is the chocolate flavoring.
my sister made a big pot of this last night. i said “pick anything from the swap box!” and she giggled at several of the options as she went through the pile.
i really loved this tea. delicious cream grey with none if the caffeine guilt!
i’m writing this from my phone and i’ve been too busy to really be able to spend quality time on steepster. but i still visit and browse your entries everyday! even if it is just for a few minutes.
i would really like to have a tea like this in my permanent stash. i’m not afraid of the decafs.
thank you so much TastyBrew! i really enjoyed this sample!