I picked up this tea up at the Cleveland Botanical Garden when I was there last week; the leaves they had out smelled pretty good, and though I rarely buy a full pouch of tea without sampling it first these days, I decided to get this one. This company doesn’t have any teas on Steepster (other than this one now), but they seem pretty cool because most of their teas are organic and fair trade. This tea doesn’t appear on the company’s website, and it has a specific “Cleveland Botanical Garden” label, which makes me think that this one is probably produced specifically for them (the company is based in Ohio).
Anyway, on to the tea. The smell of the dry leaf is very powerful, and hard to place. A hint of vanilla, some general floral, and maybe some fruity sweetness? The leaves are decently sized for a flavored tea, and there are tons of flowerpetals in the blend. I brewed it for my standard new-tea time, and it came out pretty dark. Brewed, the aroma mellows out into a pleasant black tea with very distinct vanilla notes with perhaps some florals underneath. The taste is a twinge bitter (will probably brew at less than boiling next time), but otherwise very pleasant. A fairly bold black tea with some honeyed notes, and overall a lovely vanilla that is almost a floral vanilla, if that makes sense, and less of a creamy vanilla. Given that this is a “vanilla orchid” tea, I suppose that’s the point. The rose is definitely there adding to the floral flavor and aroma.
Overall a really nice tea, and I’m glad I picked it up. Appropriate for a botanical garden, too!