60 Tasting Notes
The weather is lovely, and so anything fruity can be appreciated. Time to sip a bit of “Quatre fruits rouges”… the steeped tea smells nicely of red fruits, in a shy sort of way which already lets you know that this aromatised black tea is a job well done. It might well be that the fragrances are softer now as I got the tin 2 years ago, but I like it this way. The discrete presence of the fruit in the taste is also to my liking. I didn´t realise at first, but I left a bit in the mug, which I drank later (cold) and it had turned a bit bitter, not overly though. Overall a positive experience… and I should finish this and other Kusmi tins I bought about the same time.
Flavors: Berries, Cherry, Raspberry, Strawberry
Ever since my childhood – when my mother more or less forced me to drink herbal teas she would blend herself – I kind of avoided these infusions. Did I have my fair share already, or do I just not like the taste of them? I prefer to think that most of the time both of explanations apply. Maybe there are exceptions like a sweet mint tea as you can get in a Maroccan restaurant, or a very fragrant thyme infusion to help digestion.
Delhaize´s “No Stress” is one of the infusions available in their “Well Being – Caring Moments” range and is built around some “lemony” herbs like lemongrass and lemonbalm. These are clearly present in the smell. I see on the packet other ingredients I cannot easily identify : apple (!), fennel and lemon as well as natural lemon aroma. Fortunately (for me) the resulting infusion isn´t at all citrusy, it stays herbal with a discrete lemony touch. Not exactly my cup of tea, but I can imagine a herbal tea fan liking this one. Personally I think it´s a nice cup to enjoy before going to bed.
Individually wrapped tea bags have the extra advantage you can easily take them with you, and they stay fresh longer. So I might use them before their “best before” date (8/2018) after all ;-)
Flavors: Fennel, Lemon, Lemongrass
Delhaize´s take on a green tea where the herbal notes are covered up with – very discrete – fruity notes. It stays very “easy drinking”, for the big public. Although I´m not too much into green teas, I quite like this “no nonsense” approach and I´m happy the coconut flavour is limited. No stuff for the green tea aficionados, I´m afraid : too little complexity comes from the green tea in this aromatised tea. The recommended steeping time on the pack is 3 minutes, which I find a bit on the short side.
Flavors: Coconut, Green, Mango
Was offered this tea in a B&B in UK. As I didn´t know the company I did some investigation and obviously Frellsen is a Danish company. They began importing coffee in 1897 and the company is now in hands of the 4th generation of Frellsen. As far as I can tell, they have 16 types of tea on offer and this Earl Grey seems to be the most important one. It´s very fragrant, but somehow the aroma´s seem to wander off before the tea is steeping, because the drink is quite neutrally tasting, which is a shame.
We discovered All About Tea in Portsmouth this Bank Holiday weekend, when we made an excursion to Portsmouth after having had lunch in an original concept place called Pie&Vinyl. The place is a combination of tea blender, tea shop and café. Quite a few blends (realized in house) are optimised for the local tap water in different places of Hampshire. As a fan of Earl Grey teas, I wanted to try the Southsea Grey I had already liked from its aroma´s in All About Tea. Very aromatic and surprisingly soft tasting, without turning bitter too soon…just the way an afternoon tea should be! Wonderful packaging as well, to ensure best storage conditions.
English breakfast teas are not necessarily very fragrant nor distinctively tasty, but tend to be easy to enjoy in the morning, and especially combine well with a hearty breakfast. Delhaize´s English Breakfast is a tea that doesn´t turn bitter with (steeping) time, but it doesn´t thrill me either…I tried it a few times, changing steeping time and water temperature, but the resulting cup was always a rather neutrally tasting brew. I guess I will finish the box and find another English breakfast tea to enjoy!
I only opened this tea this week, as I was eager for a nice cup of Earl Grey, and I thought this loose tea would make a nice pot. Well, I must say the first observation was really positive : the tea is indeed very fragrant…as is indicated on the box, I now notice. But the fragrance doesn´t translate in a tasty cup, which is a shame. As a matter of fact, the tea when served in a mug could be any easy going cup of tea, and not necessarily you will taste it´s an Earl Grey either. What a disappointment!
Almost thought I had lost this tea when moving houses last time. Getting to the end of the tin though. The loose tea had already lost a bit of its aroma, but fortunately, that isn´t the case for the steeping tea. Made a pot to have a real afternoon tea, including Devon scones! The floral aspect of the tea accompanies the scones (filled with some “endrina” jam -> “endrinas” are the berries used in northern Spain to prepare an anisette licor called patxarán, and after having given colour and taste to the patxarán, I make a jam with them) very well. The tea doesn´t turn too bitter either when finishing the pot.
Not too keen about green teas as in general they don´t seem to give me the necessary full flavour I get from black teas, but I like jasmine tea : not only how it smells, but also the rich taste of it. Delhaize offers a very decent jasmine/green tea in high quality tea pyramids, and I really enjoyed drinking it. Maybe not as good as the jasmine tea I once had in a tea house in one of the gardens of Suzhou, but when you just want to make yourself a quick cup, this is a sure pick!
Flavors: Green, Jasmine
Herbal infusions are by far in the minority in my tea cupboard, probably because during my childhood my mother used to prepare me all sorts of herbal teas she put together with herbs she had previously picked and dried, and I have already had enough for an entire lifetime ;-) But ginger is very useful when you´re suffering from a sore throat, so I decided to give this infusion a try. Very often, whenever ginger is added to a dish or a drink, it overwhelms it completely; therefore, I prefer to be careful using it. The tea makers of Taylors of Harrogate seem to have had the same care, as the ginger is balanced very well by the lemongrass. As far as I am concerned, the resulting herbal tea is rich, tasty and perfectly alright to please people who not normally drink herbal teas. it managed to convince me!
Flavors: Ginger, Lemongrass