305 Tasting Notes

I just toasted rice for the first time! I used the long grain white rice that we had laying around. I threw a few tablespoons into a non-stick skillet, and toasted it just above medium (I started on low, but I have a ceramic stove-top that takes forever to heat up). I stirred it pretty often, and transferred the rice to a tin when it was golden brown. I let it cool a bit, then brewed a teaspoon of it in 8 oz of boiling water. It’s very lightly flavored, but tasty. The flavor reminds me of popcorn, actually. It brews up almost colorless, which is interesting. I don’t really like the Genmaicha I’ve had, but I think that’s because I’m not a big fan of green tea. I really liked Verdant’s Black Chocolate Genmaicha, which is sadly discontinued. I’ll try blending this with other herbals right now, and try it with black tea eventually, too. I’m pleased with the success of this experiment. I may need to try roasting other grains for tea. I already know I like roasted barley, so that would probably be worth roasting myself.

Flavors: Popcorn, Toasted Rice

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
gmathis

I think I need to try that! Just drank a Kettle Corn tea that actually had popped popcorn shards in it—that could happen at home, too…

rosebudmelissa

I’ve heard some people roast dried corn as well. I wonder how different corn or popcorn would taste?

gmathis

I think, somewhere along the years, I have tried a corn tea from an Asian grocery. If memory serves, was a little odd on its own, but might be a good blending element.

rosebudmelissa

I’ll have to try some eventually, then. I like experimenting with blending.

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I really liked the old version of this, and unlike pretty much every other review I’ve seen for this, I don’t think I like this version quite as well. The strawberry flavor is stronger, but it’s not nearly as creamy. This tastes more like fresh strawberries than strawberry milkshake. It’s still quite tasty, but it’s not quite what I was hoping for.

Flavors: Strawberry, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

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I tried this today while over at my in-laws, before going out to finish up the last of the Christmas shopping. I added a couple tablespoons of cold water before throwing in the teabag, and only brewed it for about a minute. It turned out quite pleasant. It was light and fruity and tasted mostly of peach. I’m glad I liked it, because it’s extremely rare for me to run across a peach flavored tea I like.

Flavors: Peach

Preparation
1 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
gmathis

The pyramid-bag line of Lipton stuff isn’t bad. Hadn’t tried this one.

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This is a sample I got from someone. Thank you mysterious benefactor!

It’s pretty tasty. It has a light flavor of apple pie that really complements the rooibos/honeybush blend. It’s not overwhelmingly sweet even though it has licorice root. I didn’t even know it had licorice root until I looked at the website, which is great since I tend to really dislike licorice root. This is all around a pretty satisfying lightly sweet, lightly spiced apple flavored tea. I would drink this again, but it’s probably not something I should pick up right now since licorice root is one of those things pregnant women are supposed to avoid. Oops! At least there’s not much in this blend.

Flavors: Apple, Spices, Sweet, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Rooibos Chai + Vanilla Rooibos = Vanilla Chai Rooibos! Should be obvious, but sometimes combinations don’t work out like one would expect. I used a bag of Fireside Chai from Zhena’s Gypsy tea, and the Vanilla Rooibos is from Indigo Tea Company. I made this as a latte, and its a mild chai, so the spices got a bit drowned, but it’s still good.

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This might be the mildest chai I’ve ever had that still tastes good. The dominant flavor is clove which blends into a mild flavor of cinnamon, with a hint of smooth woodiness from the rooibos in the background. It’s good on its own if you’re in the mood for a mild chai, but there’s no way it would stand up to milk. I’ll have to think about whether or not I want more of this. It might make a decent everyday sort of tea, but it doesn’t wow me.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Clove, Smooth, Spices, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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I’m currently looking for more variety in pregnancy-safe bagged teas that won’t trigger heartburn and actually appeal to me despite my numerous pregnancy induced food aversions. It’s not an especially long list. I haven’t had too many bagged honeybush teas, but I’ve tried several loose varieties. This one is quite good. It’s smooth and woody and just a bit sweet. It doesn’t seem astringent or sour like some honeybush teas I’ve tried. So far I’m quite impressed by Numi’s teas. I have their rooibos chai yet to try and the rest of the sampler pack will be saved until after the baby comes.

Flavors: Sweet, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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This was probably one of the best rooibos teas I’ve tasted. It was earthy and smooth, with a bit of woodiness and hay. It had none of the cough syrup or cigarette smoke flavors that you sometimes get. I may decide to buy more of this. A good first taste of Numi’s teas. This one is rated surprisingly low on Steepster, but it looks like that’s mostly because it was the reviewers first experience with rooibos, and it just isn’t really for them.

Flavors: Earth, Hay, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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This is my favorite rooibos chai so far (other than the sadly discontinued Trader Joe’s Ruby Red Chai). It holds it’s own with milk – and I use about half milk for my chai tea – and has a nice balance of spices. It even tastes slightly nutty, maybe from the honeybush? I’ll have to try it by itself to make a definitive decision, but it may be the rooibos chai I decide to keep on my shelf for a while. My only complaint is that the bags aren’t individually wrapped, so I can’t really take it in my purse easily. I still have a couple varieties yet to try, so we’ll see if I can solve that problem.

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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This is a mild chai with a nice balance of spices and a hint of orange. On its own, it works pretty well, but a single teabag isn’t really strong enough if you want to add milk. Personally I prefer the spices in my chai to be a little bolder than this. It’s definitely pleasant, though and has a pretty well-rounded flavor for a rooibos chai.

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Profile

Bio

I drink a lot of herbal tea, and the occasional cup of traditional tea here and there. I enjoy experimenting with my own blends.

Flavors I like:
Tea (unflavored/dessert blacks, dark oolongs, jasmine green, unflavored/fruity/floral whites)
Desert (chocolate, molasses, caramel, vanilla, honey, cream)
Spices (ginger, cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, black pepper)
Fruit(raspberry, honeydew, lemon, lime, apple, blueberry, plum, fig, grape, pineapple, orange, mango, grapefruit)
Flowers (jasmine, hibiscus, chamomile, rose, chrysanthemum)
Nuts (coconut, hazelnut, pecan, cashew)
Misc. (anise, honeybush, green rooibos, mint, barley, rosemary, dandelion leaf, rice)

Flavors I Dislike: cardamon, lemongrass, coffee, chicory, red rooibos, licorice root, stevia; artificial peach, cherry, and almond flavors; bitter or astringent teas, unflavored greens

Allergies and Sensitivities: lavender and stevia upset my stomach

I have participated in the Overboard TTB, the Butiki Herbal Blending Box, and the Butiki Educational TTB. I ran the Herbal TTB and the Monthly TTB Club, and am currently running the Herbal and Decaf TTB.

Ratings:
90-100: Truly excellent tea, will buy, could drink it every day but might save it for special occasions because it’s that good, will miss it if it’s not in my cupboard.
75-89: Really good tea, would buy, but not quite perfect, or not anything particularly special.
66-74: Good tea, would buy, but will also look for better
50-66: Probably wouldn’t buy this tea, but would drink it if offered
33-49: I will never buy this tea, and would probably even turn it down if it was offered to me.
1-32: I hope to never drink this tea again

I’m currently pregnant, so I’m drinking less tea (especially new teas) than normal, and my activity may be rather sporadic.

Location

Maryland

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