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237 Tasting Notes
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Oh, this is a nice spiced tisane! One of my favorites so far from the Hoppi Tea Swap. Some orange rind, some cassia bark (not cinnamon, but I am pretentious about that) and a just-right (to me) ammount of hibiscus to not overpower the all thing. I like it.
I am getting more and more converted to this one.
I am liking this more and more all the time. Not my number 1 favorite rooibos or not yet, if I keep loving it more and more it might reach there yet. A really elegant flavour – fruity, strawberries and green apples and maybe vanilla ( just my brain finding these there) and a nice rooibos undernearth.
Thanks to the HoppiTea Swap, I am trying american teas. Apart from celestial seasonings, I had never had any american blends, or even found them for sale. So pretty happy to get a chance to try it. But is it just me observing this trend, or are american tea blenders obsessed with hibiscus?!?
KTT kindly picked a wide range of teas, which are not nominally hibiscus teas, but of the ones I have already tried it´s like almost all have hibiscus hidden there in some form! Even this which is green tea. I could not believe it when I brew it, hibiscus in green tea, but checking online, blender admits it. Hibiscus with green tea, is just not going to be my cup of tea, unfortunately.
I am biased about the hibiscus, I admit sometimes they can be used nicely, just feeling grumpy about it being a “surprise” ingredient in so many unexpected teas. This is a nice green tea, with the tang of the hibiscus mixing with the green tea. Reminded me a bit of Twinings´Green Tea with Cranberry ( though that one has no hibiscus, so less tart). I am very glad to have had a chance to try it, thank you very much Carolynne.
I am making my way through a lot of teas KTT kindly sent me on the Hoppitea Swap. This one came with a particular recommendation to not brew it over 2 minutes – well, it went a few seconds over that but not too much. I was going to divide the sample into two small teacups but accidentally poured too much so made just my very large half liter cup.
And this is very pleasant, though maybe a bit heavy on the cassia – which btw it is not cinnamon. Really. Truly. It´s cassia and pretty distinctive, though yeah I know cinnamon in the USA almost always means cassia and not the other (real, from my point of view) cinnamon. Cassia being sharper seems to go very well with the tang of this – I can detect fruitiness, but not plums specifically. If it has hibiscus ground in ( color and acidity) it is in a just right dosage It is a winner for me!
I am still trying to love this, this is probably the most expensive loose-leaf by the weight tea I have yet bought, I am not quitting! I will crack a way of making it that I will love it. Somehow I refuse to not believe in the promise of its smell. I must just be doing it wrong.
This time I upped the dosage a lot. Still with milk, because it does seem to be the sort of tea which needs it. And this is awful of me to even think it, but what this reminded of, most of all, was Nesquik. A lot of vanilla with some underlying chocolate. I loved Nesquik, but way back then, now I like chocolate with more oomph.
A sample, from the HoppiTea swap, kindly sent by Keen Tea Thyme! My introduction to american tea.
This is uh interesting. Not an euphemism, it is not bad, but it is a bit odd. And where´s the rooibos?!? Just kidding, it is there, I can see a bit of smallish bits (ants I call them) lost at the bottom at the pot but this is the least rooibos-ish rooibos teas I ever had. I am just checking and nobody online mentions this to have any hibiscus, but I do think it has! On a forensic examination I think there are a couple petals of it, though not really sure, I am going by the color and tartness of the liquor (never used that word yet :p) which seems typically hibiscus. Not too much, but stronger than the rooibos . Apart from that there is cinnamon indeed, and orange peel (? or is it pineapple?) as well. There were quite a few rosebuds, and more fruits on the dose I used but I can not say I taste them. Interesting blend.
I am not an Earl Grey person (Twinings excepted, particularly their Lady Grey. I do not know why them, just is). So my opinion is probably valueless for any Earl Grey lovers. But in case it is useful here go my two cents.
This is almost an Earl Grey Tea I could like, if only I liked Earl Grey. The beautiful blue star like flowers are not actually the ubiquitous cornflowers but mallow flowers. Not sure if they add taste to the mix exactly, if they do it´s delicate. The bergamot is quite delicate IMO and the underlying tea is classy, not too brute, not too wimpy, Keemun tea. If you like very strong, ceylon or assam based EG teas, or EG with lots of bergamot this might not be for you. But I enjoyed it a lot ( but then again, I am doing my best to drink my way through the Yumchaa catalogue and have pretty much liked everything, despite being monstrously picky )
This smells extraordinary, perhaps the most appealing tea blend I ever smelled. Smells very rich, of chocolate and vanilla and some other things, so fabulous I had to buy a bit.
And now I am brewing it for the first time, I am a bit disappointed. I brew it precisely how I do with my other chocolate teas (MF´s Wedding Impérial and Yumchaa´s Caramel Sweetheart, I love both of these) and it is the wrong way, I must up the dosage or something, try it without milk, because frankly using the same process as for the other chocolate teas, this one was sort of wimpish. It tastes mostly of vanilla, lovely natural vanilla. Some chocolate taste afterwards, but the milk and sugar mask everything else. The base tea seems like maybe it is some delicate-ish Ceylon.
Not a bad tea at all, but a bit too delicate for what its smell promised. I will try it again to see if I can crack the right method for this one.
I had this for a while, and of course when I decide it totally rocks and need more, I hear it has been discontinued. Urgh. I am on a wild quest to get more.
This is very very fruity indeed. It is hibiscus and apple and strawberries and lots other red fruits. To my taste the hibiscus is not overwhelming (I am not a hibiscus fan), it´s there and without apologies, but it´s balanced enough for me. Hot is quite nice. But I decided to make it iced, and OMG IT TOTALLY ROCKS ICED. It is incredibly nice iced. I went through the whole pitcher in half an hour, it was so good I could not ration it.
Desperately searching for more now.
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Nice, so nice, now a staple for me. Though admittedly I also love the original Thé sur le Nil. Description is rooibos with citrus, lemongrass, “oriental” spices and marigold petals. I am not so sure I detect the spices or any flavour from the petals, so a citrusy lemongrass-y good rooibos. Very good and pleasant, I love rooibos with citrus and this is so very good.
I have been most unfair with this tea. Most most unfair. I thought it was good but sort of meh. Except now I decided to try it a bit differently and I think I have cracked it – it needs sugar and milk. It needs a very generous tea serving and it needs to be stirred often, while brewing and before pouring and even in the cup, because it was so much texture from the melted caramel and chocolate. But done like that it just might be the most decadent tea I ever had ( apologies to Wedding Imperial, but this has just more texture), though I got hopes for yet untried Fauchon Chocolate Tea.
I need to upgrade this a bit – I tried it with more rooibos and while not going to replace my number 1 favorite fruity rooibos, it is much nicer than I was giving it credit. I like the underlying rooibos very much, the fruity part is also very nice.
Another green honeybush (maybe there is such a thing), green rooibos mix. And one I particularly like.
It does not taste like any apfelstrudel I ever had, though arguably I never had apfelstrudel in vienna. To me, after that lovely clear pure sweet green rooibos/honeybush flavour, it tastes of hazelnuts. It tastes so strongly of hazelnuts it makes me check my teeth for hazelnut pieces – and this is meant as a compliment. After that there is a apple taste indeed, but apple tea (as opposed to fresh apples), and maybe a hint of cinnamon. It is lovely, to put it plainly.They call it a winter tea, but I think I love it year long.
This not strictly green tea. It is honeybush (normal I guess. I do not know if there is such a thing as green honeybush) with green rooibos and supposedly some mint flavouring. I say supposedly because I did not notice it – maybe my package is too old and mint too volatile, or maybe I brew it too long (it´s rooibos. It stays there till I am ready to drink it).
To me it tastes mostly like plain green rooibos – the first rooibos I ever had was green rooibos and I am quite partial. It is a totally different taste (and infusion colour) than normal red rooibos. Its taste is more herbal, “greener”, a bit more like green tea or linden or camomile or a mix of all of those. Not bitter at all. I like this a lot and might rebuy – though I am looking as well for good quality plain green rooibos as well, and good quality plain honeybush.
This Marco Rouge is lovely and nice – it is rooibos (duh) and upfront about being rooibos. If you hate or just dislike plain rooibos this one might not be a rooibos for you.
The tea smells heavenly on the package, brewed up its smell seems far less complex – but then again, it is rooibos, it brew very hot and long. But then again Berry Berry Nice (by Yumchaa, a small London tea company) which is my favorite rooibos ever and to which I can not help comparing this with, is also brewed very hot and long and seems more intense and complex when drinking. A lot more.
After brewed Marco Rouge tastes of plain rooibos (stating the obvious, sorry. But a good rooibos) and strawberry and vanilla. Nice. Not bad, but for this sort of thing, my beloved Berry Berry Nice is much better and deeper. IMHO and all that.
I bought a small ammount to test at home. And I do like it better if I brew it myself, on my small teapot and just so. Better.
This tea smells incredible in every stage. The tea leaves with a thousand fruity smell, then after brewed, like strawberry jam and green apples and maybe caramel. First taste is for me strawberry with green Granny Smith apples coming later at the back of the mouth. Nobody else seems to have tasted apples, never mind green apples, so my brain might be just wrongly assigning a particularsmell to a very complex blend of flavours.
Must retest, less brewing time I think and maybe try milk. Lovely indeed, though it did not knock my socks off as much as expected.
According to the ingredients, it is black assam tea with all “natural” flavouring of honey, cocoa and vanilla. A fair description apart maybe from the naturalness of the honey flavouring. It smells very strongly of honey before brewed, true, but it reminds me not of how true honey smells and taste but of “honey” lipbalms (particularly The Body Shop´s defunct honey lipbalm) and other “honey” products. After brewed it thankfully tones down a bit, the honey is still uppermost, but there is a nice aftertaste for the cocoa and vanilla. I like it a lot for that aftertaste, I wish the honey was not so intense, and dislike the assam tea base underneath, which seems a bit tanninic and bitter to me. In all I did not hate it, but both the flavouring and tea are a bit too strong for me.
This is probably too old or something – though it shouldn´t and the tea bags are sealed hermetically in a nice sealed packaging. But while it smells very nice (caramel though not really dulce de leche and red fruits) it tastes like nothing. Trying to rescue it thought to add milk. Bad bad idea, by some weird chemistry it now tastes almost dusty, slightly smoky but in a cigarette way, not a pine lapsang souchong.
Considering tossing this.
well, this is the scraping of the barrel, the last lost little broken dusty bits at the end of the tin. So this tasting might not be too fair, because of that and because the tin was bought a couple years ago.
It is lovely. I think by now the caramel overtone is topmost note, though I can also catch some vanilla and some chocolate. It tastes almost almondy to me as well.
Very very good, though I will probably take a break from it right now and buy instead maybe Thé sur le Nil. In Autumn I will reconsider buying – maybe this is a season prejudice of mine, but Wedding Imperial is in my mind, a very winter-ish type of tea.
It´s mostly a grapefruit flavoured (not that grapefruit is mentioned on tea description, but really it´s grapefruit) rooibos. I can detect the orange as well, a bit overpowered by the grapefruit, but none of the other flavours. Not bad, but not anything to write home about (or rebuy).