For the longest time I was searching for an herbal to drink at night, something to kind of wind-down with and get all cozy with. I made a point to try a lot of teas with nut or cinnamon or vanilla notes, but nothing stood out… even Whispering Pines Elder Grove, which I had high hopes for, did not appeal to me. I thought that tea could not fulfill my expecations for this particular flavor, but I was wrong =) Let me first provide some perspective and preface this by saying that I am extremely critical with my ratings system; most of the teas I really enjoyed did not even make it into the 80’s, and some of the best teas I have tasted have not made it into the 90’s. So when I rate something at 97 after the first tasting, I hope that will mean something.
I received this today in my Tea Sparrow subscription service (which I highly recommend). The dry leaf smells like the essence of warm holiday memories, which sounds cliche I know but its the truth. I thought this could perhaps be the tea I had been searching for, but I didn’t want to get excited since I know that a tea’s dry leaf scent can be very different from its liquid flavor. So I put 5-6 pieces of brown rock sugar into my mug and steeped this for a bit – 2.5tsp in 8oz at 210F for 7mins, to be exact.
When it was done, somehow the steeped scent was even better than the dry leaf scent. And then I tasted it, fully expecting it to be much less flavorful than I imagined. But O_O. Within seconds of the first sip I instantly had a smile on my face because right away I knew that this was what I had wanted all this time. This tea is ridiculous; a perfect combination of nutty cinnamon with just right right amount of apple sweetness and a creaminess to meld it all together in harmony. With its strong desert-like flavor, I literally CANNOT believe that this tea does not have any sort of flavoring added to it. Not to say that the inclusion of flavoring would’ve stopped me from loving this, I literally don’t care what the ingredients are if the tea tastes this good! I had long thought that herbals were not capable of achieving the type of deep flavor I wanted, and after tasting this tea I am pleased to discover that I was wrong. This is an instant favorite, and I couldn’t be happier with it.
During my short exploration in the tea world, there have been a handful of tastings that made me do a double-take back at my cup as if to say “Whaaat is this real life?!?” due to disbelief. In these instances, I had to literally re-taste the tea to reassure myself that it did in fact taste as incredible as I thought. However, this was NOT the case with this tea. Instead, my reaction was an instant smile of satisfaction because I knew right away on the very first sip that this was exactly what I wanted. This tea became a favorite within 2 seconds of the first sip, and that’s something I cannot say about any other tea I have tasted up until this point. Perhaps its because I had no idea herbals could taste like this, or perhaps because this flavor is just something that personally appeals to me, or perhaps just simply because this tea is absolutely undeniably fantastic… whatever the reason is, I 100% recommend this tea to everybody. If you enjoy this even half as much as I did, I’m sure you will love it.