Everyone seemed to be in a fruity oolong mood today – including myself! However, I’m at work now and I figured a long work shift would be a good time to ‘field test’, if you will, the two high energy teas I recently purchased (this one and Good Morning Sunshine).
This one I got from Tea Desire, and I’d been holding off on buying it because somewhere I’d got it into my head that this blend and Chocolate Rocket were too similar, and it wasn’t worth my time to have both. However, after being reassured by the Tea Desire sales ladies (whom I know pretty well, now, and who I trust a pretty fair bit in recommencing teas) that they were different I caved at last and got some.
Tea Desire does not have steeping directions for their mate blends – much to my annoyance, so despite being told that they were different blends I steeped this the same way I’d steep Chocolate Rocket: 1 1/2 tsp. in boiling water for four minutes.
The smell was divine: very much like rich, dark toffee. Not the dollar store crap, but the good stuff you have to pay an arm and a leg for which has depth and character and is so chewy that your mouth nearly gets clamped shut trying to gnaw your way through it. Much to my surprise, I could also smell the sunflower quite astutely. It was interesting because that’s a scent and flavour I would not normally associate with hazelnut brittle or toffee, but it was working quite well for me. Really, I just wanted to try this tea right then and there – but it was too hot to drink and I was running late for work.
After pouring this into my water bottle and then getting to work I was so distracted with stock shipments, catching up on my paper work, and an unexpected rush of customers that it’s been about two hours now before I’ve been able to get around to trying either tea (and I’m still hesitant about sneaking onto the till’s internet seeing how many customers I just had).
I have the water bottle of mate sitting next to me right now open – and the sweet toffee and gentle sunflower and hazelnut notes are managing to stand out over all the other weird “mall smells” that are usually super strong. Seriously – you have the food court (which always smells like Sweet and Sour chicken and Subway) right next to me, and the weird smell of pee and, as awful as it sounds, older people (if you’ve ever been in an old folks home you know the smell) that never dissipates – and yet the tea blend is what’s standing out to me.
Tasting it now – First taste is a mixture of chocolate, hazelnut, and toffee (but heavier on the toffee) that reminds me of when you eat one of those Toffifee candies whole. Very sweet and decadent and, I’ll admit it, quite different than Chocolate Rocket which is like a dark roasted coffee (heavy on chicory) with raspberry and chocolate. This is lighter, and less roasted tasting. I think maybe part of what makes the roasted taste lighter IS that absence of chicory and then the addition of sunflower. Again, it’s not something I’d expect to go with the other flavours but it is still present and it is working for me.
Lastly, after you go from Toffifee to toffee/sunflower, you get a lighter roasted mate taste with some creaminess that holds over into the aftertaste. That’s where I’m finding the mate itself most noticeable: the end of the sip and the aftertaste. Delicious!
I’m glad I did pick this up after all. It’s a really good blend that I’m sure I’ll enjoy over and over. I think sometimes my stubbornness prevents me from trying good blends: I’ll have to keep that in mind, especially in regard to green tea blends which I’m often too stubborn to give a chance.
Well – onto work tea #2 now! Good Morning (though rather afternoon, now) Sunshine from Butiki! Yes – it’s a very ‘high energy’ afternoon :P
(PS. Happy Turkey Day, Americans!)