I got a fair amount of this tea in my recent swap with brandy3392… thanks again for the swap! I was interested in it because I like the idea of an anjou pear oolong, and also because I enjoy trying a bunch of Teavana teas without ever having to deal with the company. The dry leaf on this was something I have come to expect from some of these big flavored tea companies (not just Teavana) of a high “inclusions” to tea ratio. What’s also interesting is that the oolong seems to be a mix of dark oolong (short, uncurled leaves and some stems) and green oolong (reasonably well rolled balls).
The steeped tea on this one immediately lets me know that the rosehips and hibiscus are not going to be hiding here. It is a lovely “dusky rose” color. While I do get a pretty obvious tart hibiscus aroma from this, I also definitely smell the slightly vegetal, slightly floral oolong base underneath. Overall, I’d have to say that I like this tea ok, but I don’t think it does what it intends to… or at least what it advertises. It definitely has a super tart, hibiscusy taste at the front of the sip, which fades into a sweetish, fruity flavor toward the end. The hibiscus/rosehips kind of overwhelms the rest of it. I used to see teas with hibiscus in them and think that they’d be fine because I love hibiscus, but really I love it cold and highly sweetened, not in hot teas. I will definitely look forward to making this one iced in a big pitcher when the weather warms up.