326 Tasting Notes
This really does taste like a liquid candy cane. There’s no green tea to speak of in the flavor profile, and I do wonder why they even bothered with it (vs. a purely peppermint base). Anyway, this is a nice decaf option – especially for the price – if not quite in the same league as Butiki’s Peppermint Patty, my current favorite peppermint blend.
This is very strong! I had it in the afternoon today, but I’ll be drinking the rest of my stash as a breakfast tea. I’m getting a lot of what I think might be best described as oaky notes, and I’m also picking up on that unexpected vegetal note others have mentioned. While it’s not a dealbreaker it is something I could do without in a black tea. Not bad, but I definitely prefer Butiki’s Irish Breakfast as far as bold morning teas go.
This tastes very banana to me; mango, not so much. It’s got a pleasantly creamy mouthfeel, like a real lassi (or a banana…). The rooibos comes through a bit more strongly than I’d like, as I’m not too fond of that tobacco flavor. Not bad for something caffeine-free, but I don’t think this will be a reorder.
This is the last of the teas I picked up at the Bellocq meetup (back in September – eek!). It’s a very nice, smooth Assam, with all of the malty goodness I love in Indian teas. I could do with a bit more boldness – I think Sil’s right that this is more of an afternoon tea than a breakfast one – but on the whole I’m really enjoying this! The fact that it’s organic is a plus for me, too. There are tons of quality Assams out there, including plenty I’ve yet to try, but I could certainly see myself picking up some more of this at some point. I think I might like this ever so slightly more than Bellocq Breakfast, but I’d have to try that one again to be sure.
The fact that this tea is described as a white tea for people who like black tea lured me in. I’ve been wanting to get into white tea, or to try to, but I haven’t been impressed with white teas thus far – the flavors just aren’t vibrant enough for me, at least with regard to the limited selection I’ve tried.
And this is certainly different from what I’ve had before! It’s sweet, smooth, and a little bit malty. I’m not quite getting caramel, but sweet potato seems closer to the mark. When the tea was hot, I could’ve sworn I tasted the faintest note of citrus, or something like it, something sour – maybe that’s the apricot mentioned in the description? – but that’s faded now that it’s cooler. It does taste remarkably like a black tea; as others have noted, it’s got a lot in common with a greener Darjeeling. If I hadn’t known it was white, I never would’ve guessed. Now that my cup’s cooled quite a bit, I’m definitely getting dried apricot. I’m glad I got to try this, and I’m enjoying my cup, but I don’t think it will be a reorder.
New tea #2 from my Black Friday order. This is a really nice tisane! I’m mostly getting the crispest, most refreshing blast of peppermint, with some extra sweetness and just a hint of chocolate. I noticed that a bunch of the chocolate chips didn’t melt; reading through other reviews I’m belatedly seeing the suggestion to stir while it’s brewing. I’ll try that next time. Even without the full-on chocolate, though, I’m really enjoying this. It may just win itself a place in my pantheon of caffeine-free favorites.
So evidently when I made my first pot of Rhubarb Vanilla Ale this morning, I misread the instructions and used one teaspoon per cup rather than one tablespoon – whoops! Onto take two: this time, the base is stronger but still smooth and not smoky. The rhubarb and vanilla are coming through about as strongly as they did before. I am getting the hops, on the end of the sip and in the aftertaste, and I do find them slightly bitter and just weird-tasting. Still, they’re not strong enough to ruin an otherwise very pleasant cup of tea for me. I’m keeping my rating the same, just FYI.
First tea of my massive Black Friday Butiki order! This reminds me of Butiki’s Ruby Pie, although I think I slightly prefer the new blend. The dry leaf smells very sweet and fruity, but once steeped the aroma mellows. The flavor is fairly light, with some pleasant tartness – probably the rhubarb flavoring. The base is delightfully smooth, and surprisingly light for a Keemun. I don’t taste anything I can identify as hops, which is no bad thing as far as I’m concerned. I’ve tried one other tea with hops (not from Butiki) and found the flavor too assertively herbal – aggressively herbal, even – for my liking. I’m not picking up on the vanilla either, although there is a light sweetness that might be coming from that element of the blend (and probably also the safflower? I’ve always wondered what role that plays in blends…). This is very nice, if not a standout for me, and I’m pleased to know that hops in tea don’t necessarily have to be a dealbreaker!
This is my favorite from Celestial Seasonings. It’s not the best tisane in the world, but for what it is (and what it costs) it’s a pleasant cup. It’s sweet (but not too sweet, like certain other CS blends that will remain unnamed), with hints of vanilla and citrus, and the mouthfeel is pleasingly creamy – almost buttery, even. To me, it’s more vanilla frosting than sugar cookie. Like so many flavored teas and tisanes, it doesn’t taste quite as amazing as it smells. As others have mentioned, it really needs two bags for the full blast of flavor (especially if you’re anti-sweetener like me). And although I’ve never tried it this way, I bet it’d be great with a splash of soymilk – maybe I’ll do that for my next cup.