86 Tasting Notes
I guess it’s a bagged tea kind of day for me. I wanted something without caffeine but wasn’t in the mood for my usual fare.
Saje, for those of you who don’t know, is a Canadian natural wellness store. They’re known for their bath and beauty products, as well as their natural remedies and essential oils. They have a tea line too called RemeTea. I tried a sample of the Chai Rooibos in-store; it seemed pretty good so I bought the sampler.
There’s a reason I don’t like bagged teas. The flavour never seems to get into the whole drink, if you know what I mean. Even the bagged version of Coco Chai Rooibos, while still delicious, doesn’t taste quite the same. The other problem is that I have no idea how the sample in the store was steeped.
Following the instructions for steeped tea and adding sugar and milk gave me a tea that was like spicy water. I can’t detect the rooibos at all, and the spices are very mild. I may try the other method (traditional chai) with my other bags to see if there’s any difference.
This is certified organic and fair trade for those of you who are into that kind of thing. I probably won’t get this again, unless the traditional method is way better than this.
Sil recently wrote a tasting note about a Disney tea, the Mad Tea Party Blend. Which reminded me that I have some Disney Wonderland tea that a friend gave me last year. So now I have to try it and see what it’s like.
I’ve been avoiding it because 1) it’s a bagged tea and I generally don’t like bagged teas anymore, and 2) it’s Disney, how good can they really make a tea? Well, dry, it smells like any ol’ tea bag (LOL). Steeped, it does smell like blueberries.
I drank the first mugful plain because it’s a green tea. I taste green tea with a faint hint of blueberry. So the scent was a tease! Or I did something wrong since everyone else who’s reviewed this can really taste the blueberry flavouring. Well, I did use boiling water like the vague instructions said.
Second mug: fresh tea bag, 80° water, tiny bit of sugar. Yes, way more blueberry flavour this time.
Like everyone else, I’m giving this tea a lot of leeway because it is Disney branded. I wouldn’t buy it for myself for sure. I think I’ll try some of this iced to see what that tastes like.
Après-midi is a tea shop in Vancouver, BC. It looks like they’ll be changing names to Gastown Tea Company in the near future. I had a very lovely afternoon tea service there shortly before I moved to Red Deer. I also bought some of their loose leaf teas to try.
I think I found it! My perfect chai! Now, why have I let this bag sit in my stash for so long??? The dry scent is that perfect combination of cinnamon and cardamon. I used 3 scoops of the perfect teaspoon into my Davids Tea Steeper. The brewed scent is just what I expect from a chai. Two teaspoons of sugar and about 1/2 a cup of milk went in too. This is it. This is what I remember from the very first time I had homemade chai at a friend’s house. Rich spiciness from the cardamon, cinnamon and cloves. There’s allspice and lots of ginger in there too.
I’m soooo happy. What a great start to my weekend!
So, I seem to have a pattern. If I have a particularly nasty tea one day, I invariably reach for one of my all time favourites the next day as if to wipe out the bad taste in my mouth.
But I also reached for my Coco Chai Rooibos to celebrate mailing off my first tea swap to tunes&tea. (Yes, you do get some of this in there!) Woo hoo!
I love the spiciness of this chai. And the coconut is to die for. And best of all, no caffeine so I can drink this whenever I want :) Even though I’m still on the eternal search for the perfect chai, this is the best I’ve found so far.
Can’t wait to see your reviews Dave!
Oooooh, I really hate saying this. I made some Tulsi India Chai yesterday, and I so did not like it. It was more minty than spicy; the mintiness overpowered the earthiness that I found the last time I drank a tulsi tea. This is just a bad mix for me :(
I found a little sample of this that a friend had given me a while back. I figured might as well give it a go, even though I wasn’t really sure about it after looking up kombucha online.
It smells pretty good dry. It smells really fruity and yummy when steeped. It’s okay. Maybe I’m all weirded out by the idea of kombucha so it’s clouding my judgement. I don’t mind it. It’s pleasantly fruity with a bit of an earthy aftertaste. But, I like Long Life Oolong way better. I’m glad this was just a small sample.
Another foray for me into the world of non-flavoured black teas :)
This reminds me of orange pekoe oddly enough. It’s mild, both in scent and in taste. That’s not a bad thing at all, just unexpected. One day, I’m going to have to make myself a taste test bar of different black teas. Well, once I have more than 2 black teas in my cupboard. As of right now, I think I like my darjeeling a little bit better.
Does anyone have any suggestions for other straight black teas I should try? Or better yet, does anyone want to do a tea swap with me so I can try other black teas? I have tons of flavoured teas to share :)
Mmmmmm…salted caramel. I have been dying to try this one ever since I found out about it. Alas, I had to wait a little bit after my move to first make some money at my new job, and second order online because I don’t have a Davids Tea handy anymore.
The dry scent is amazing. It’s a rich caramel scent with hints of salt. When brewed, it reminded me a bit of Creme Caramel Rooibos but with a deeper scent, which make sense since this is a black tea. Just the same as Fantasy Island, I steeped this for 4 minutes then added a teaspoon of rock came sugar, no milk.
See, I’m trying to test the theory that the reason I feel the need to add milk to my black teas is because I steep them for too long. My theory was proven with Fantasy Island, but not so much with Salted Caramel. My first cup as described above wasn’t as great as the scent would have me believe. It tasted like a “smokier” version of Creme Caramel Rooibos. No, smokey is the wrong word. More “tea-ish”? I couldn’t get any sense of the salt in there either.
I made a second mug at 5 minutes and put both sugar and milk. Much better. It was smoother, and that rich caramel flavour was more well-rounded against the black tea. Still no salt, but maybe we’re not supposed to really notice it. The more I got through the mug, the more I liked it. I think this one will be a keeper.
Trying out one of my new teas this morning while I get my butt in gear to go to the Farmer’s Market.
I really like this. Dry, it smells heavenly. All raspberry and coconutty. I decided to try it with just a tiny bit of some rock cane sugar I suckered myself into buying, and no milk even though I always put milk in my black teas. It’s quite yummy. I get way more coconut that raspberry though. Maybe if I did put a smidgen of milk the raspberry would come out. I like whatever the tea base is. At 4 minutes, I don’t get any of the bitterness that I worry about when I drink black tea.
I suspect I would drink this a lot if I didn’t limit my black teas to the morning. Well that, and the fact I have a lot of black teas to get through :)
Edit: I did a second steeping after I got home from the market. (By the way, it’s not supposed to be this chilly when it’s only September 1st. Just saying.) Steeped 5 minutes, little bit of the rock cane sugar, no milk: it tastes just as yummy as the first steeping.
I couldn’t place the scent of the brewed tea earlier. I took more time to think about it this time. It reminds me of the early morning in a tropical country (for me, that would be the Philippines or Vietnam). The scent of the tea is like the woody scent of the trees in that hot, muggy morning mist.
Wahoo! Got my shipment from Davids Tea yesterday…the same day the fall collection was announced (poopy). But, I’m so excited to try some new teas: Prairie Berry, Fantasy Island, Salted Caramel and Nepal black tea. And since I had my tea shipped to my work, I got to show it all to my coworkers and started a great discussion about tea. Too bad there isn’t a Davids Tea in Red Deer :(
I digress. I started with Prairie Berry, you know with being from Saskatchewan and all. There sure are a lot more cranberries than Saskatoon berries in there. The smell was everything I expected from this tea. I did, however, forget about it in my steeper while I was working so it sat for more than 15 minutes. I tried to redeem it with a bit of maple sugar after the first few sips that were so not so yummy. The sugar helped a little, but I really think I messed up the whole thing. Yet, I did like the berry flavour once I got over the bitterness.
I’m not going to rate this yet, not until I make it properly and give it a good chance.