Chocolate Phoenix Chai

Tea type
Chai Oolong Blend
Ingredients
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Flavors
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Caffeine
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Edit tea info Last updated by Janefan
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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68 Tasting Notes View all

From Verdant Tea

“An inspired blend of Phoenix Mountain oolong and black with rich chocolatey spice accented by the sweet florals of whole vanilla bean and marigold. . . .”

After countless requests, we took up the mission of formulating the best chocolate chai in the world. Instead of a traditional black tea base, we opted for a mix of two Mi Lan, or Honey Orchid varietal teas from the Phoenix Mountains. The Mi Lan Oolong gives a fruity and sweet juiciness to the whole mixture, while the Mi Lan Black provides a rich caramel thickness and satisfying malty thickness. Combined, their flavor profiles already suggest chocolate, so it was easy to pick out a light roasted organic cacao nib, and organic whole vanilla bean for blending.

The opening flavor in this chai is that of a satisfying, freshly frothed Mexican hot chocolate. The flavor of sweet ginger and buttery saffron follow, with cardamom for balance. Next, the base tea itself really shines in contrast with juicy fruity bursting texture, like eating the best red grapes ever. The sweetness does not fade, instead, it is brought out by the floral whole vanilla bean that we mix in generously.

This chai is one of our favorite projects so far, and blends great with milk or almond milk, and honey or agave. Iced, this one performs just as spectacularly, with more vanilla floral notes coming through.

About Verdant Tea View company

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68 Tasting Notes

87
2273 tasting notes

For whatever reason, I’m really enjoying this today in spite of still thinking it a bit on the weak side. I can really taste the delicious base tea, with the light spicing floating overtop, and it’s really quite pleasant. I needed a change from the teas I’ve been drinking repeatedly lately, and I bought 2 oz. of this one, so into the cup it went! Good choice, self :D

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec
Claire

Rayn is really in love with this tea, and he likes it best with about 3tsp to 14oz of water.

Kittenna

I actually think that might be the ratio I used! It was three rounded/rough teaspoons in my large mug, which is likely 14 oz. (Or perhaps 12, but I suspect 14).

Bonnie

I thought this was 3 tsp plus 1/2 tsp to 14 oz. so you’d be weak at 3 tsp. (2 tsp per 8 oz is on the website)

Kittenna

Well, they were generous teaspoons to be sure, but thanks for pointing that out! I think I may have assumed 1.5 tsp to 8 oz. Wonder if that’s part of the problem! It’s enjoyable today though :D

Claire

I wonder if Rayn likes weak tea now, or if I should make this stronger for him?

Bonnie

Claire now has a dilemma! Check back for a report at midnight!

Claire

Bonnie – I’m cracking up! Rayn goes to bed around 11:30, but stay tuned…

TeaBrat

I’m on the edge of my seat! :)

Claire

Drumroll…I made him some tonight with 4 teaspoons for 14oz of water and he said it was refreshing, and the flavor was perfect. I just need to read instructions more often!

Bonnie

Maybe he was referring to you and not the tea being perfect Claire!

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673 tasting notes

Tonight my daughter and two of my grandaughters (Megan and Kiah) came over and brought me presents! (not an occasion, just being nice!)

A new electric tea pot (stainless this time) and The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel DVD! Yes!
I’ve already seen the movie and it’s really fun to see especially with Chai.

Because I knew the ladies were coming over I warmed this Chocolate Phoenix Chai in 56 oz. of milk slowly on the stove, adding honey just before straining and serving.

The tea was frothy and creamy smooth, full of caramel and cocoa.
The taste of natural, subtle vanilla had bloomed in the warm milk.

I had placed a bowl of ginger cookies on the coffee table to eat with the Chai. Dunk and eat or sip and take a bite, whatever the style, the pair went really well together. The Chai wasn’t too spicy so the cookie spiciness was perfect.

I had to make this second tasting note since we had such a great time sipping this Chai tonight, watching a good movie together.
What a great family!

I’d love to have a Chai holiday party. Everyone brings a hot Chai in a thermos so it doesn’t have to be heated. Has to be labeled and let the tasting begin.

Great Chai! Cheers!

Fjellrev

On my shopping list this goes!

KeenTeaThyme

Ditto – this sounds so delicious, and perfect for the holidays! :) (OK what tea isn’t?)

darby

I’m going to have to try that! Might need to order more Phoenix as I’m sure it’ll be TASTY!

BoxerMama

I love this one.

Terri HarpLady

Wonderful, Bonnie! I was just sitting here, sipping a Butiki Org. Assam, & thinking that with this fall-like weather, I’m in the mood for a latte type beverage. I’m going to follow your lead! So I’m heating up almond milk, with the Laoshan Village Chai in it, & we’re going to the bubble bath together: me & myself, & chai

Bonnie

Might be gone now. BUT, all the Chai’s are wonderful. I’ve tried them all and can’t wait to taste the new blends. (Terri, you’re heading to my kind of old ladyishness. That’s the kind of bath thing I would do! I have Root Beer Philosophy Bubble Bath for when grandkids sleep over and they get rootbeer floats to drink while in the tub!)

Terri HarpLady

Nice, Bonnie!! I like that root beer float idea! My bubble baths always include tea, a book, music, sometimes a snack, & bubbles, of course!

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83
2966 tasting notes

Cold Brewed Tea, where have you been all my life???

My sister, Ms. Whatsit, has bragged about cold brewed tea (& coffee) for a long time, & I’m only now getting around to it. You see, I’m very organized in certain ways, & very disorganized in others.

I’m re-reading the ‘7 Habits of Highly Effective People’. I won’t tell you how many times I’ve read it, or how many journals start in January with my attempts to live it, but the numbers are legion, & each time I get a little farther along at implementing these Habits into my life & business, before I start backsliding into the 7 Habits of not-so effective people.

So Habit # 1 is “Be Proactive”. That basically means do the pre-requisite things that need to be done, so that you’ll be able to do the next things. My life is full of pre-requisites, & cold brewed tea is a perfect example. If I want to have cold brewed tea, the pre-requisite is to start the tea before I go to bed, & it will be happily waiting for me at lunch time! It seems so simple, & yet this is the first time I’ve actually done it.

Cold Brewed, this tea is reminiscent of iced coffee! It’s a deep unsweetened baker’s chocolate malted infusion of crystaline clarity. I have errands to run now, & I suspect this will power me through them! I usually drink my cold teas unsweetened, but I’m tempted to add a little sweetness & almond milk…maybe…

Bonnie

I like people to improve their lives but I worked for one of those people who writes those books…barf…(wrote a book called ‘How to get an ’A’ in Life’ with the forward written by John Wooden). I had to prepare all the materials for seminars with Jay Abraham and Antony Robbins where executives paid big bucks to attend. Blech. I know a lot about things…anyway, thankless job. #1 rule of my boss was pay the help as little as possible while squeezing work out of them till they pass out. I think one of the contributors to my being sick was working there.

Bonnie

Uh, sorry. That’s a yes on the venting!

Ms. Whatsit

I found blog especially amusing as I was just thinking today I ought to slow down and start doing more hot tea.

Terri HarpLady

Bonnie, you’re welcome to vent anytime!
Ms Whatsit, LOL :D

Terri HarpLady

And I have to say, the most messed people I’ve ever met are psychologics, psychiatrists, & the various self-help gurus. I think (& I hope I won’t offend anyone here) most of them are focused on helping others so that they can avoid looking at themselves.

Nik

Yes, but in this age of 37signals-inspired productivity, there are also a few books/resources that are actually worthwhile. They are written/created not by self-proclaimed self-help gurus, but by people whose job isn’t to motivate/help/inspire/“fix” others, people who are just going about their business and have found something that has worked for them, so they want to share it with the rest of us. That’s the type of thing I can appreciate.

Bonnie

I agree that there are helpful books. Don’t get me wrong. I just ran into the marketing guru’s… business guru’s out for money that charged $5,000-10,000 for executives to attend seminars. Every client of ours was a CEO. I could vent but won’t.

Terri HarpLady

Something I also noticed long ago is that usually when someone writes a book like that, the first one is really genuine & good. After that, at least in some cases, they are just looking for a new angle to profit from. I’m an extreme right Brainer, my entire adult life has been, in part, a quest to be more organized & business-like. The 7 Habits have helped me in some ways, to get some kind of focus, although I’ve never really been able to totally implement them. The 12 Steps (recovery) have helped me in other ways, to understand that all of my problems begin with me. Readings from the Taoism, Buddhism, Rumi, & various other sources also help me in many ways. Thus I grow…

Bonnie

I think I just heard a familiar theme and went BOING…back to that placed….sorry. There are lots of great people and books that are helpful I read lots of books.

Angrboda

I didn’t know you could cold brew coffee! How exactly is that done? Is it just steeped like tea overnight?

Terri HarpLady

Angrboda, ask MsWhatsit! She just joined the site.

Angrboda

I was hoping she might see it. :)

MsWhatsit

There are some pricy contraptions for it, but I just use a mason jar, put the normal amount of coffee or tea in it, fill it with water and leave it in the fridge until it’s reached the desired intensity. Then I pour it through a coffee filter or tea strainer into another jar and it’s done.
Just like sun tea only it doesn’t get rancid and keeps really well. You can even heat it in the microwave if you like.

Angrboda

Thank you! I do have a weakness for iced cafe latte in summer. I might be able to do something similar at home then without having to have access to fancy-pants coffee making machinery. :)

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91
470 tasting notes

I love this blend, but I’ve oddly never had it as a traditional chai, so I decided to change that (last night, when Steepster was acting wonky). Stovetop, 1 cup milk, 1 cup water, honey, simmered for 10 minutes. Perfect!

The honey brings out the buttery notes in this blend, and it’s more distinctly “chai” than the gaiwan method (which brings out individual spices instead of the signature chai mishmash). There’s also a lot more chocolate, in fact some pretty darn strong cocoa notes! This is a perfectly balanced chai when prepared this way, no single note dominates but they all meld together beautifully. I wonder how it would taste with almond milk…

Ze_Teamaker

Taste even better with almond milk. It adds a sweet nuttiness to it.

Lynxiebrat

LOL…making me want to try this, but i have not had much luck in teas that have chocolate in them, unfortunately. and so far, my experience with chai has not been so great either, over all.

Alphakitty

If you don’t like chocolate or chai it’s probably not the tea for you BUT I think it’s a lighter chai and I believe the chocolate notes come from the tea, not added flavoring so it might be worth a try.

Kittenna

Yes – I was going to make the same comment actually – afaik there’s no chocolate in here, just chocolatey notes from the base teas, so if artificial chocolate isn’t working for you, that shouldn’t be an issue here. As for not being super fond of chais, yeah, this one’s definitely lighter (so if spice strength has been an issue…), and I also don’t think it tastes like your “classic” chai, so it could be worth a shot. Perhaps more of a swap-type thing than a purchase, though.

Ze_Teamaker

Actually it does have chocolate in it, but like the others have said it’s not artificial. Instead of chocolate chips(which almost never works) it has cacao nibs. It is basically the whole coco bean chopped up and roasted. There isn’t a lot in the blend though, it is really just there to accentuate the base tea’s natural chocolate flavor; like they said above.

Kittenna

Ahhh, you are right. I was thinking more along the lines of chips/artificial flavourings. :)

Lynxiebrat

Hmm…not sure if I’ll be able to swap with anyone til March…that is if I could find someone willing.

Alphakitty

I think the nibs in mine floated down to the bottom of the bag since there were none in my spoonful, guess I have to shake it up a bit next time!

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72
4942 tasting notes

SIPDOWN! Because you know what u can taste while sick? CHAI! oh yeah baby! spices coming through doing the happy dance. So i’ve been drinking this most of the afternoon – resteeps are pretty darn delicious. I like this better now that I’m sick lol so it’s nice to have a really good happy moment with this one.

Kittenna

Mayan Chocolate Chai with its heavy cayenne kick = even better when sick :D

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74
805 tasting notes

I’m really curious. Has anyone participated in Earth Hour today?

Let’s get this straight. I’m über picky about chai. Deathfully picky. In my home city, there is this chai bar owner who took six years to perfect his recipes. He imports all his spices from India and they’re packed with flavour, depth, and complexity. So naturally, most stuff I try pales in comparison to his genius.

I figured Verdant would give him a run for his money. Sadly, for me, this chai misses the mark. Not what I would even consider a chai. It’s thin and lacks depth.

Sure, the cardamom is punching you in the face and the marigolds have declared war on said cardamom, but the base is lacking. The ginger is present but blends in almost too much with the marigolds. No chocolate or vanilla.

I’ve had this without any additives, and with a bit of coconut milk and honey. The latter produces better results, but it still lacks depth and complexity.

The second steep brought out the ginger a bit more, maaaybe the chocolate, but there is still an imbalance.

I’m going to have to try subsequent steeps with this sometime. Glad to say I experienced this though.

Lynne-tea

Tell me the name of the said chai god!!

Fjellrev

The place is called Remedy Cafe, and his name is Zee. :) There is one on 109th street, and another own downtown. I have a feeling the one on 109th will become your second home at uni. It’s like a five minute walk from campus. OMG, I miss that place. I always went there to study and sip on chai. He has two different recipes too, and both are amazing.

Amariel

I totally missed it. First time I have missed it and I feel bad. I want to make it up somewhere else.

Fjellrev

Ah, don’t beat yourself up. I asked my roommate earlier today if she ever participated in it, and she wrinkled her face and said no. I said it was for a good cause and she gave me some neutral response. Sure enough, the light was on in her room during Earth Hour, watching TV. And there I was writing my paper in the dark. So um, ok.

So yeah, you’re still doing well haha. At least you’re aware.

OMGsrsly

I was on the ferry. :) I was hoping they’d power off and drift for an hour, but it’s kind of awkward to do that when the boat is in dock. I was thinking of adding a stronger base to this tea, as I do like the unique spice blend.

Bonnie

My feeling about chai is a bit like curry. Everyone has their own mix, (we’re not talking about commercially bottled curry), and you really can’t compare them side by side. The ingredients are all different! You like some better than others,and love a few. Many are eh to one’s taste but not to another.

Fjellrev

Yeah, you can say that about all tea in general. Taste is subjective.

OMGsrsly, I was thinking of doing the same thing, mixing it with something else to give it some depth. Glad the ferry didn’t actually power off! That would have been weird haha.

Lynne-tea

Maybe some Bailin Gongfu Black! :) or some Big Red Robe from Teavivre as well.. both are cheap and delicious

Bonnie

Not exactly. Chai isn’t a straight tea (the way we’re defining the word chai) but a blend. But taste is indeed subjective.

Fjellrev

I use the term loosely instead of going on a long-winded response on categories and sub-categories since all of us here do know the difference anyway. That’s semantics for you. :)

Your suggestions sound lovely, Lynn-tea! Is that what you ended up trying with yours since you’ve had a similar experience with this?

Bonnie

I’m sick today and shouldn’t comment on anything anyway. Not going to review a tea and still in my pjs. Every time I loosely use the term chai someone seems to pop up and correct me, letting me know that chai is the name for tea in much of the world. Groan. I should have kept quiet.

Fjellrev

Yeah, I was actually just talking about this with a friend the other day, how chai just means “tea” in Hindi anyway, and basically anything steeped is “chai” but it seems that in the western world, at least in Western Canada, the term “chai” is used to refer to a Masala type of chai, a blend of spices and actual tea leaves. Hell, throw in some ground pistachios and roses on top.

But yeah, I mean, people should be able to use terms like “chai” and “tea” loosely without being “corrected” since dialects and varieties differ, and ultimately, we do all know the intent behind people’s words anyway.

Lynne-tea

Nope I have not had a chance to try it yet, but I’m drinking the BRR right now and it’s sweet and chestnut flavours would go well with the chai I think. BGB would be amazing too since it’s so malty and chocolatey on its own it would help hold up the overpowering spices better than whatever they used for the base of this tea.
My opinion only though :)

Bonnie

I serve this chai steeped slowly in whole milk and clover honey.My grandchildren are very fond of the frothy goodness. And yes,it is a more subtle chai.

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84
1311 tasting notes

Much improved, much improved. Seriously. Milk and honey. Fixes everything. Bonnie! you know how to fix a funny chai lol. Thanks for the tip!
Sil have you tried it that way?! It’s quite good!
Very mild in the spices, but widespread and complex. On the swallow, I can taste chocolate whereas without dairy, all I get is fake sweetness. Yup, I quite like it this way. Not sure if I’m inspired to place an order, as I’d like to try out some other Verdant teas first. Also, it is somewhat limiting as I’d like to be able to enjoy it plain as well. That factor alone lowers my rating a few points.

Update: Now that I’ve finished the cup, there is a cooling sensation almost like menthol. Interesting!

Bonnie

This is one Chai that’s not cinnamon (I sent some to my sister-in-law who’s allergic to cinnamon). It’s milder true, glad you tried it with the milk and honey.

Indigobloom

I don’t mind cinnamon in my chai.It’s clove and cardamom that gets me!

Kittenna

Mmm, I like chais with generous amounts of all three!

Indigobloom

Oh and fennel. Blech!

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96
587 tasting notes

I’m having a cup of this now, and even though I’ve burned my tongue on it… it’s still AWESOME! I’ll try to be more specific later :D As with all my chais and most blacks this was taken with milk :D

Preparation
Boiling
Helena

much better than chocolate chili chai by David’s Tea (and the only other chocolate chai I’ve tried) I can taste chocolate and the ginger talks a little louder but doesn’t shout. I also have this feeling in my mouth that is similar to when I eat bacon (watering mouth and leaves me craving more) I don’t see how anyone can not love this :D

Sil

Aaaaah! I so don’t need more tea in my cupboard lol

Helena

I’m just glad that when I ordered, I ordered an ounce :D

TheTeaFairy

Thanks for mentioning that about DT’s version. I love DT chocolate chai, so I will definately order Verdant’s version from what you have to say about it. I was just about to place an order, how perfect!

HyBr1d

Glad you liked the chai Helena! I love it as well :) I ordered 4 oz of this and am happy I did, as I see it is sold out already :( Lol David has a hit on his hands I believe!

Have you tried the Laoshan Village chai? It is very good, although I do prefer the phoenix chai for some reason… I am still training my taste buds, so I really don’t know exactly why I prefer one over the other, unfortunately :(

Sil

Crap. Lol I was going to be picking it up today. Ah well…

HyBr1d

Well, it looks like there is no need to panic… On the Verdant site it says that they expect to have this great chai back in stock in about a week or so, so hopefully you wont miss out :)

Sil

ooh thanks a ton hybr1d! missed seeing that :)

Helena

I think I prefer the Laoshan Village Chai :D Although I haven’t drank as much of it as the chocolate phoenix chai. I’m trying to drink up some of my stash so I have room in the cupboard again :D

Sil

Helena – any reason why that you can articulate hahah and I know the feeling on drinking up some of your stash.

Helena

I think I’m drinking it more because like bacon or pretzels I get that salty type feeling the one that makes you crave more snacks. So I thought I better finish it before I start to gain weight :D I’ve also found that I only like this one with lots of milk (some chais are just that way) so it’s a good tea but I won’t buy it again :)

Sil

Ahhh thanks for the details :) I don’t think I’ve yet to have any tea with milk. Glad you’re enjoying the teas though. Wish we had more companies in Canada like this…although that being said we probably do and I’m just in the dark haha

HyBr1d

As far as getting my tea cupboard in order, I’m kind of in the same boat as you are, Helena! I am actually going to be holding off ordering because of all the tea I have that I don’t drink on a regular basis…. Luckily, I thought ahead a bit and have a reserve of 4oz each of the Laoshan Black and Zhu Rong! I really should get more Dancong Black, but I think I will wait until I see that the stock is low. I have 2 oz of the Laoshan Chai that I need to finish too! Problem is that I find it hard to resist new teas, especially black teas and darker oolongs… It may be heresy but I am actually not a fan of tieguanyin. I would like to try a dark roast one though, as there is a charcoal roast dong ding from aurateas that I really enjoy, and would think a tieguanyin roasted similarly would taste similar.

Lol tea is becoming a bit of an addiction for me!

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100
171 tasting notes

Oh. My. GAWD! I feel like in purchasing this tea I must’ve sold my soul to the devil. This is amazing. It’s so even, no spice stands out more than any other. They have learned to live in perfect harmony. We need to take a lesson from this tea.

Preparation
Boiling 1 min, 0 sec
BoxerMama

Second steep doesn’t lose it’s integrity one bit! This will be a permanent fixture in my collection!

Sil

Glad to hear it. I still really need to get this one,

Bonnie

Oh Whoopie! I have this on the counter ready to try. I might save it for my blog launch though. IF I CAN!

BoxerMama

It’s sooooo good. I will warn you, it woke me RIGHT up. . . Unfortunately it’s 10:15pm… lol, I wasn’t thinking, I was in a bad mood and needed a good tea.
I still have two more verdant teas patiently awaiting their turns.

Bonnie

One thing that I always do even after all these months is read the website steeping instructions for each tea because Verdant suggests steep times that are different than most.

BoxerMama

I read the whole site after reading your review for Golden Fleece. lol

Bonnie

You are like me. I love listening to the podcasts and reading to learn what I can because I have so far to go. Ugh, I think I’ll stay a tea baby forever!

BoxerMama

I want to know everything, right now! Learning is so fun though.

Terri HarpLady

oh yay!! This is one of the teas I ordered the other night…I can’t wait…

BoxerMama

It’s VERY good!

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87
779 tasting notes

This did not stand up well to some half and half, sadly. I was going for a strong, latte-ish experience but I guess I underleafed? I felt like I did 1.5 tsp. to 10 oz. liquid, but even after 5 minutes the steeped liquor was very light.

I got a hint of spice and chocolate but I think more leaf is probably the answer for next time. Note to self, then.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Bonnie

Honestly, it’s light but wakes up if you also add some honey.

OMGsrsly

I agree with Bonnie! It’s a really light tea.

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