543 Tasting Notes
This one was kind of a flop for me. I love ginger! I love the burn!
…But this does not burn. There’s no bright, almost citrus-like flavor of some ginger teas I’ve had. It’s mellow, more like an everyday ginger ale. Not to say it’s bad or anything, I was just hoping for more of a fresh ginger kick. This tastes like powdered ginger.
That said, this will still be good to mix with stuff or enjoy iced. I can add a layer of ginger to pretty much anything in my cupboard and it will be good, so I don’t mind that this isn’t stellar.
Let me start off with a disclaimer: While I believe tea has health benefits, I don’t usually trust things with the word “detox” on them. Honestly, if your body needs a product to cleanse itself of “toxins”, you’re probably in liver failure. That said, I got this $35 bag of tea for $2 with a coupon. So, if it’s awful, I won’t care.
Despite being a blend of all sorts of things I wouldn’t have thought to put together, it actually smells pretty nice. Like lemon cake. However, it also lists “flavors” in the ingredients. Not impressed there. Once steeped, it comes out dark like a black tea. Aside from the lemon, there is a strong rooibos aroma. I really dislike rooibos, but I’m trying to keep an open mind.
The flavor is mild and actually not bad. Yes, the rooibos flavor is in the forefront, but it pairs really well with the lemon. There is also a bit of astringent bitterness, but I don’t mind it. I can’t taste the other ingredients so much. But I look forward to seeing if the guarana seed has any effect.
One more thing, though. This tea lists corn as an ingredient. That’s definitely a first for me… and will probably be a last, also.
Flavors: Bitter, Lemon, Rooibos
This is the second time I’ve gotten this as a freebie in the Republic of Tea catalog. But last year I was making a pot of chai to share with someone and blended it in. So no review. My bad.
Ok, so the tea bag is very, very aromatic. I’m getting loud notes of butter-rum flavor, nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon, and pumpkin. Good lord. They did not go lightly on the spice. (Yay!) Seriously, this smells like it would be a Yankee Candle. (I mean that in the nicest way possible!) Just handling the bag from the envelope to the cup leaves my hands smelling festive.
In addition to the usual stevia sweetener, I added a tiny splash of 1% milk. Ginger seems to be the strongest spice in the mix, followed by clove, nutmeg, and cinnamon. The pumpkin pie filling flavor is there, but the spices sort of shout over it. This could be my fault for steeping for so long.
This still might not be quite the pumpkin spice tea I’m looking for, but it sure comes close! Best yet, for sure.
Flavors: Cinnamon, Clove, Ginger, Nutmeg, Pumpkin, Rum
Got this as a free sample in my most recent order. I saw Adagio teasing us with free watermelon tea on Twitter and I couldn’t resist. So I made a small end-of-summer order.
The contents of the pouch look like a mix of dried apple cubes and red potpourri. The apple pieces were all clumped together, so I broke them up with my spoon. Now, I haven’t had an Adagio tisane in like ten years. I tried a few back in the day and thought they were good, but I need my caffeine fix and without that, those teas were basically expensive juice that I had to assemble myself.
But… but watermelon. So, the pouch gave a range of 5-10 minutes. I went with 8, preparing it strong to go over ice. It didn’t come out quite as bright pink as I was expecting with the hibiscus content. It’s more of a peachy pink. Kinda like cantaloupe. However, the flavor is pretty spot on. Very melony despite how much apple is in it. And it’s very natural-tasting… not like a Jolly Rancher or anything like that. I’m really looking forward to blending it with a coconut black tea in the morning.
Big disclaimer, though — I used twice as much tea as you’re supposed to. I’ve had a bunch of teas like this and by now I know what’s up.
Flavors: Apple, Berries, Berry, Fruity, Hibiscus, Melon
This is another tea from Angel at Teavivre. Thanks again, Angel! Sorry it took me so long!
The first thing I notice as I open the pouch is a sweet, almost caramellized fruit aroma. Like a grilled peach. The leaves are very narrow and fine. Dark, dark brown. As the tea steeps, the water goes dark very quickly and the leaves unfurl to perfect little spears of young leaves.
The flavor is smooth and has a distinct sweet potato note. I also get a sort of wheat bread and malt flavor, too. It’s a very heavy black tea, but I love it. It’s very satisfying and is definitely going on my order list for Teavivre. Would be a wonderful winter tea. I think it could also serve as a good substitute for coffee.
A note to self, however: Scoop lightly, this stuff is potent! Maybe go with a shorter steep time, too.
Flavors: Baked Bread, Malt, Sweet Potatoes
This was another sample from Joshua who is working with Zhi Tea. Thanks, Joshua!!
The dry leaf has a very sweet, Ceylon-like aroma. Like hay and vintage leather. The leaves themselves are little brown nuggets, some broken, some whole. The resulting dark amber tea is a strong cup. Definitely appropriate for the first tea of the day. I get notes of leather, raisins, hay, and something woodsy. Sort of like the way the forest smells when it hasn’t rained in a long time.
I can’t say I’m as impressed with this one as I was with Assam Breakfast. It’s pretty astringent, though the flavors are nice. I guess there’s a sharpness that’s not appealing to me as much. But still, I’m happy to have it for the upcoming first cool mornings of fall.
Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Dark Wood, Hay, Leather, Raisins
My thanks go to Joshua at Zhi Tea for sending me this sample! I really like the packaging. Very elegant, artsy pouches.
The leaves are a dark chocolate brown, small, and very concentrated. Because of this, one teaspoon makes a hearty cup of tea. Of course, that makes it a very effective first-thing-in-the-morning cup. But strength is not bitterness in this Assam, as it has been in others I’ve had in the past. Even as it brews up to a dark brownish amber, it remains pretty mellow. Some Assams I’ve had in the past have a sort of sharpness to them, but this one doesn’t. The flavor is nicely balanced.
I get notes of malt, cream, and honey. Maybe whole wheat bread. It’s a very satisfying and rich taste. I could definitely see myself ordering this come winter.
Flavors: Cream, Honey, Malt, Wheat
Another sample from Angel at Teavivre! Thank you! I should preface this by saying this is my first white puerh ever! This is an all new experience for me.
The tea itself is gorgeous — long, perfect silver leaves. They’re fuzzy and remind me of the antennae of the giant moths we see here in the summer. <3 The aroma is very sweet and stone-fruity. It doesn’t really smell like puerh at all! Just apricots and spring-like perfume. There is no mustiness or iodine smell like I’m used to with puerh. (The things I sometimes find off-putting.)
The tea brews up to a very light tan. The flavor is mild and clean, not musty. If anything, the aging process of this puerh removed any sharpness that might have been there. I get delightful notes of apricot, maybe peaches. Very fruity and smooth. Mellow and understated, but lovely. There is a distinct note of “puerh” in the scent of the tea before I sip, but nothing like that in the taste. This is truly unique (to my experience) and elegant. I highly recommend it.
Flavors: Apricot, Fruity, Stonefruits
Ok, so this was something a little outside of my comfort zone, being a yerba mate blend. I’ve never been able to develop a taste for it.
Now, this is faintly coconutty, but it also is blended with Maya Tea’s Creme Brulee. Instead of supporting the coconut, the creme brulee flavors overpower it… but not the mate. I can tell the creme brulee is mostly there to tone down the mate. It’s strong, it’s vegetal, and it’s smoky. Like stewed green beans. As nice as the other two flavors are, and as nice of an energy boost I get from it, I can’t get through this. Nope. No thank you. This is not for me.
Flavors: Burnt Sugar, Coconut, Cream, Green Beans, Smoke, Sweet, Vegetables
I am so behind on tea reviews! Honestly, all of my time has either been spent at the office, or out playing Pokemon Go with my husband and friends. We’ve worn blisters on our feet and every muscle in our legs is sore. We literally climbed a mountain yesterday to get to Pokemon at the summit. I’m going to look like a goddess by the time we finally catch them all!
Anyway, I think I’ve said it before, but Teavivre changed the way I see oolong. Their stuff is truly great. This tea is another very tasty example. The dry leaf smells sweet and fresh, with notes of springlike grass and vegetables. The little green nuggets hang out at the surface of the water before absorbing it and sinking to the bottom. Steeped, they are long and almost all whole.
The water comes out to a light yellowy tan, sort of like straw. There is that distinct oolong pungency in the aroma, but I know it will be more in the smell than the taste. After five minutes, the flavor is light but complex. I get sweet notes of flowers, grass, and a garden right after it rains. It’s very satisfying and light, with a tiny hint of creaminess. The floral taste reminds me of gardenias, but it’s subtle. Basically, this is something that would really cheer me up in the winter when I was missing spring.
Flavors: Creamy, Cut grass, Floral, Gardenias, Sweet