1320 Tasting Notes
There are few things in this world that scream “summer” to me like watermelon. Unfortunately, they’re one of those rare treats as my father is allergic to it, so I only had it at other people’s parties when growing up. Now, my wife doesn’t like it, so it’s rare I can convince myself to lug a watermelon home and slice it up, just for myself. But the local grocery store now has mini seedless watermelons for a good price, so I’ve already had two so far this summer and plan on going back for another on Friday. So much love for watermelon in my heart. It’s just juicy and delicious and amazing. I’m just curious, did anyone out there grow up salting their watermelon? Until I was 10, we lived in Michigan and I’d never even heard of it, but when we moved to Tennessee, everyone did it. It does bring out the juiciness of it, but it’s also, you know, terrible for you.
Now, I know watermelon can be a tough flavor for tea. Many people have tried (two come to mind in 52teas watermelon iced tea and DavidsTea’s Luscious Watermelon), but I have to say I wasn’t horribly impressed with those I’ve tried. So while I had to try it, I just had to, I wasn’t holding out a lot of high hopes for this watermelon matcha (found here:http://www.redleaftea.com/matcha-tea/watermelon-matcha.html). When I opened the package, I got juicy watermelon…but a hint of metallic or whatever it was that made the lemon, peach, and mango teas so bitter. But since warm weather has moved in, I’ve gotten into the habit of mixing my tea with room temperature or cold water, and it definitely paid off this time. I get juicy, creamy watermelon and absolutely no bitterness. Mmmm, this is good. This is really good. It’s light and refreshing and utterly perfect for these coming summer months…it’s gonna be a scorcher. This is the watermelon I’ve been searching for and I can’t wait to try it blended up with some fresh melon. This kind of tastes like a watermelon bubble tea, but without the overwhelming sweetness. Maybe I need to find some tapioca pearls. It reminds me of the Ten Ren watermelon oolong blended with fresh melon, not Freshly Squeezed’s idea of a bubble tea. I’m only a little bitter, I promise. But this is a definite restock for me, and one I will definitely be sharing with friends and family.
This is the story of a girl…a girl who went through two sets of braces. A girl who spent most of high school unable to chew bubble gum. Before I got the first set of braces, I was a bubble gum fiend. My favorite Easter candy was that little mini egg carton filled with bubble gum eggs. Still is, to be honest. But after two sets of braces and a TMJ surgery, I was firmly broken of the habit of chewing gum. If I’m offered a piece, I take it, but I don’t tend to buy it. But when I do, I buy the bubble gum flavor…is there anything better? It’s another one of those flavors I associate with childhood and so this brings up all sorts of good memories, even at first whiff. Bubble gum ice cream, does anyone remember that? The rainbow ice cream filled with little gum pieces…it was two treats in one! Two treats that made two separate royal messes! I also broke my nephew of bubble gum at the age of 3 (he’s 13 now). I wasn’t thinking and his folks said he could have a gumball, so I gave him one of mine. Filled with Shocktart powder. He won’t touch the stuff now, ha! I should feel guilty, but I bet his dentist thanks me for it.
Anyway, bubble gum has a very fond place in my heart, and it brings up all kinds of memories. It was another of the new matcha flavors that immediately hopped into my cart and I had to try immediately (found here:http://www.redleaftea.com/matcha-tea/bubble-gum-matcha.html). And I’m so glad I did. It’s definitely the bubble gum ice cream of bubble gum flavors, a rainbow of different tastes and flavors, but under the single heading of bubble gum. Generic bubble gum. Not the teeth-rotting super sugary kind, but the Bazooka Joe kind that loses its flavor too quick. Except this tea doesn’t lose any of its flavor. Oh gosh, it’s good. My brain keeps trying to make me chew the tea, it tastes so much like bubble gum. I wish I had known about this when I was younger! I keep going back for sip after sip. It’s taking definite willpower to put it down long enough to write this review! I want to blow bubbles with it. I get the feeling this would make amazing cupcakes, maybe with cotton candy icing. Yum, yum, yum. Definitely a staple in my cupboard.
So this is…interesting. The lemongrass and mint really work to make it refreshing. It isn’t too tart, but there isn’t anything outstanding about it. It’s just a decent herbal. It was a sample and I have enough for another pot to cold steep, so while it won’t be any hardship finishing it off, it’s not something I feel the need to stock up on.
After being told I couldn’t use the kid’s tumbler (which I freaking LOVE) for the iced tea promo (boo!) I decided that since I had to pay full price for a cup anyway, I may as well try one of the new teas. This was…all right. I had it iced, since that’s what I’m in the mood for and I’m not so sure about hot teas in the kid’s tumbler. It was over steeped and bitter (due to the gentleman making the tea losing the timer and then setting it for a regular steep time when he found it a full minute later while my tea was already steeping), but what I could taste around the bitterness was good. I have some at home, so I’m going to try it with my own steeping preferences before I rate. But what I got was a creamy smooth caramel, so yay! Hopefully it’s not just a bitter tea.
I was so excited to see this on the tea of the day list. It’s one I love, but can’t justify the cost of, so I save it for buying tea by the cup. When it’s part of the iced tea of the day promo, even better. I had three tumblers-full by the end of my workday and it was glorious. I had forgotten how good this is.