My husband picked this sample out. Too bad I’m catching a cold and couldn’t really taste it. Seemed like an average orange/cinnamon rooibos, but my tastebuds are off.
127 Tasting Notes
So we’ve never tried this cold brewed, and I thought that I’d give that a go. I’ve actually never done a black tea cold brewed (just tisanes) so I had no idea how long to brew it for. I stuck it in the fridge and every so often we’d taste it.
It went from “not strong enough” to “OMG, something is WRONG with this!” in between two tastings. I think the lemon got stronger than the english breakfast and threw the balance off. If I was going to do it again, I would go lighter on the lemon, but I don’t think I’m going to do it again.
I’ve had a smoky russian tea before, and didn’t like it, but after hearing about trying it with jam, I was curious. When we stopped in Capital Teas we did get a chance to talk to a lady originally from Russia and she recommended that we try raspberry and black currant in the tea.
So. I’ve been nervous about trying it, since I’ve tried it before and didn’t like it, but this morning I blithely told my husband to pick whatever he wanted. That’s what he picked.
Well, he seems to like it (but he put a LOT of jam in his cup – about 6 to 8 oz of tea and 2 heaping spoons of jam).
I took one sip and gagged. It’s a unique flavor. The jam mellows the smoke, but the smoke is still there and I don’t like the smoke and fruit flavors at the same time. It’s just too weird for me.
Anyway, I tried it!
I received my Leafspa order yesterday, so brought this one and the passionfruit into the office.
Prepared hot and unsweetened, I’m getting that bitter unpleasant “flavoring” flavor that I dislike. I should have payed closer attention to the ingredients. Adding splenda smooths it out and gives it a more fruit flavor. It’s a mild fruit, but I can’t for sure identify it as “pear” or “apple” or anything. I’ll take it back home and try this as an iced tea.
I’m working my way through some samples and swaps, so dumped this into my cup before reading the ingredients. BRILLIANT IDEA! One of the ingredients is valerian root. I have too much to do before bed (like, a whole day worth of stuff!) so hopefully it won’t make me sleepy.
Also, in general I don’t like chamomile or rose petals.
There’s a bunch of little tiny rooibos looking things that got through my filter and into my cup when I brewed it (but there’s no rooibos; I’m not sure what it is, but there are several ingredients here that I’m not familiar with). I use a SUPER FINE filter, so I’m surprised that stuff got through. A ceramic filter would be a disaster with this tea.
The aroma is like chamomile, but when I breathe deep while sipping, I get a bit of wet sock. Ewww.
The first taste to hit my tongue is the dreaded chamomile, but the aftertaste is a sweet, sourish floral. If the entire tea tasted like the aftertaste, I think I’d like it, but the chamomile and wet sock odor is making it difficult to enjoy.
I may not finish this cup. We’ll see.
The first few sips just tasted like a regular black tea, but the longer I let it linger in my mouth the more the unique flavors of it come out. It’s a little malty, but not unpleasantly so (I don’t like malt!). It’s just a hint of malt.
This is a unique experiment for me (I usually either drink breakfast blacks or flavored) and it’s interesting. I don’t like it enough to buy it (it was a free sample), but I’m glad I tried it.
I’m developing a migraine and chugging coffee didn’t have any affect. There’s no caffiene in this, but it’s calming and comforting (and easy to make) so I feel better (mentally anyway!).
Not rating it yet, because I’m not sure.
I was very excited about this one. It’s tied in cute little bows, so adorable! and it smells fantastically jasmine-y. The shop lady said it’s her favorite jasmine… along with H&S. Which, I’m not fond of.
I didn’t measure the amount of tea, take the water temperature, or time the brewing, and now I wish I had. It’s bitter. I’m on the second steep and it’s still bitter. It has a bitter aftertaste.
It still (even on the second steep) has a delightful jasmine smell, just a bitter taste. And the taste reminds me more of an oolong than a green, so I’m not sure what the base is (I have no ingredients list, either on the packaging or on the website).
The leaves, now that they’ve uncurled, remind me of a mu tan white, but the flavor isn’t that at all (thank goodness, because I really don’t like that). I don’t know what the base is at all.
I’m going to have to try this again under more controlled conditions and see if it’ll come out better. Right now it’s definitely not worth the expense.
Nathaniel and I went to St. Michael’s, MD for a wine festival this past weekend, and we stayed at a cute B&B, Five Gables Inn. They had hot water and RoT teas available during the day, and after walking around town all day I decided to grab a cup and soak in the huge bathtub.
The pomegranate flavor completely overwhelmed the green tea flavor. The worst part was that the flavoring had a false note, so it wasn’t even a pleasant cup of fruity (not-green) tea.
The vanilla cream takes some of the harshness away from the rooibos and mellows it. This is one of the better rooibos’s that I’ve had, I think!
Made on the stovetop with milk and sugar.
This is very good and very chocolate-y (unlike some other chocolate chai’s I’ve had where the chocolate just adds smoothness to the chai’s spices, in this one you can actually taste chocolate).
My mouth does feel dry after finishing the cup, probably from the chocolate. :-( That’s the only downside of this one. I’ll definitely buy it again.
Not sure why I’ve been on the chai kick recently.
Yep, this is my favorite of the instants. It’s better than any of the store varieties that I tried when I was on travel, and it’s the best of SBS’s instants. Good thing I bought a bunch of it.
The 3rd mug of a 1 oz sample is a bit weak, so I’m trying to decide what to do with it. When I finished the spiced chai I just added apple chai mix, but I don’t know that that would go well with vanilla chai.
I shouldn’t have filled my mug and only made a half a mug or something! If you buy their samples, remember that when making the last mug!
I was confused when I went to add this one; I thought perhaps the website had it’s information mixed up. The description also lists vanilla in this (non-vanilla) chai! But, the ingredients list on the package does say vanilla, so I guess the website is right.
It definitely does not have the smooth vanilla aftertaste of the vanilla chai I drank Tuesday, so if I was going to pick one I’d say that the vanilla instant is the better drink. This one is spicier, but also tastes more of artificial creamer.
Of SBS Tea’s instant chai, I like the apple best… unfortunately that one is on clearance. I guess she’s not going to reblend it. :-( Of the stuff in stock the vanilla is my favorite.
I’m disappointed in this one. It’s a good chai, but I don’t taste even a hint of coconut. sigh
Since I got an email about 20% off from SBS, I decided to splurge and buy some cocoas and instant chais for the office. This one is really delightful.
At first it’s like a normal (instant) chai, but the aftertaste is a very strong vanilla. It still doesn’t compete with a traditionally brewed (stovetop) chai, but for a quick pick-me-up in the office it’s great! I’m definitely getting more of this one!
My favorite oolong; I haven’t had it in awhile because I don’t trust the automatic tea makers to do it and I’ve been lazy.
This tea doesn’t have much oolong flavor, the dominant flavor is definitely jasmine. It’s a very strong and fragrant jasmine. The oolong is there in the back a little. I used to take this sweetened, but I’m getting out of the phase where I sweetened everything out of habit; today I have no sweeteners.
So one problem in our house is that on the weekends we spend a lot of time in the office playing computer games and all of the tea prep tools are downstairs. I decided to buy a largish tea pot and a cozy so we could just keep a pot warm while we play.
I went with the Le Crueset 32 oz pot and the Thistledown HOB. I also found a ring with terrycloth stuffed in it to keep the drips off of the desk. So far it’s doing an EXCELLENT job of keeping the tea warm – I had to wait a few minutes before I could take the first sip! The pouring ability of this pot isn’t terribly good, though. It’s very pretty.
I think I used more leaf this time and steeped it for longer. I’m definitely getting more grass and OOLONG this time. I’m not really sure that I’ve ever gotten a “buttery” taste from oolong, so I’m not sure what it meant by that. It’s smooth, though. While it’s OOLONG, it doesn’t kick you in the teeth with it. It just sort of wraps you up in a blanket of OOLONG.
It’s good for an oolong, but I’m not much of a fan (I prefer fruit). It’s not you, it’s me! I’m sorry!
I received this as a bagged sample in an order from Tavalon. Seems like a pretty standard breakfast blend. I would drink it again, but I’m not in love with it.
The bag is interesting. I can’t find anything on their website to say what it is, but it doesn’t appear to be paper or cloth. It’s like interfacing material, if you sew. It’s not sealed, it’s just folded over. Didn’t seem to interfere with the brewing, though.
In other news, the water cooler at work was FINALLY fixed so I can start having tea at work again – that’s one reason I haven’t been on the site much recently (also travel).
I think this would be a great tea, if caramel and rooibos were your things. I’m more of a fruity tea drinker, so it’s passable for me.
The caramel taste is stronger than the rooibos, the rooibos is present more in the back while the caramel is in the front.
I think I’d like this better without the roses. I’m sensitive to roses and think just about anything that has them tastes like soap. This has an aftertaste of soap.
The green tea base is stronger than the white tea (I can’t detect the white tea). So, I’m first getting green tea flavor, then fruit (it’s a light tropical fruit flavor, probably because it’s mangos and pineapples), then SOAP.
Angrboda and I were discussing oolongs this morning, so I decided to try this one. I obtained a sample of it in a (non-Steepster) tea swap.
I don’t have a lot of experience with oolongs (especially non-flavored oolongs, since my favorites have been Teavana’s jasmine and Lupicia’s mango), but this one is okay. It’s not overwhelmingly oolong, but it’s more delicate and smooth.
I purchased the ForLife Curve teacup for work so now I can brew loose leaf teas in the office.
I’m not sure why I bought this one, since I’m not fond of white teas. Sweetened with splenda, it hides the bite that I don’t like in whites.
The pomegrante taste is there, but only slightly. It’s present as a mild “fruit” taste not as a good pomegrante flavor. I should note, though, that’s it’s made with “flavorings” and I’m not good at picking up on “flavorings”.