Finally got into a Teavana for the first time. Wasn’t thrilled with the selection; most of what I went in there to try was out of stock. However, I did pick up some of this tea to try, and want to see how it compares to my current fav, Creamed Earl Grey by Tealish. Currently watching the final episodes of Downton Abbey Season 2, and distracted by the butter tarts that I am shoving in my mouth. I’m not going to rate this tea today as it would hardly be a fair review, but will say that it was an enjoyable enough experience with the butter tarts, and of course, my beloved characters of this show.
51 Tasting Notes
2 teabags, 1 Venti sized Starbucks Mug. I’m falling asleep, been running on little sleep and I need to wake up, fast. Today’s brew is beyond “kick you in the teeth” – this is “kick you in the teeth, dragged down the cobblestone road by a team of horses, and then dump you in a trough” type of goodness. Hot damn, I love this tea.
Well I was going to brew something else, but the man wanted to have a cup of tea with me and he said “none of that fancy stuff. I just want that orange pekoe or whatever it’s called. You, know, REAL tea?” Since he rarely wants to take tea with me, I try to oblige his requests. ;). So I brewed a pot of this and he really enjoyed it. I was surprised when he said he wanted to drink it black (I didn’t know he took his tea straight – I guess you learn something new each day!) He sniffed it first and then took a sip and said “mmm good” and said at the end that it was a good cup of tea. So there you go! I, of course enjoyed mine too. All in all, it was really nice – tea is meant to be shared :)
Backlogging from last night.
A bit of tummy lurgy tonight. BIG mug with lots of honey. Crisis averted.
So when I was burrowing through some stuff in my basement, I came across a long-ago purchased hammock that I had forgotten about. Imagine! I could have been using the damn thing all summer, and only just now found it. Ah well, at least I found it.In my pea brain, I had romantic visions of me swaying gently in my hammock, whilst drinking a cuppa, and enjoying a good book beneath the shady trees. Sounds delightful, right? Well, have you ever tried to drink anything in a hammock? I’m not sure it can be done. Especially a HOT drink. Picture it: Hot tea. Swingy hammock. Flailing arms. A girl who should never try to join Cirque du Solei. Nope, not a good situation. Learn from my folly. I can’t believe I’m even telling all of you, but I figured you might have a laugh from it. End result, tea was excellent once my feet (and rear) were firmly planted on the ground. ;)
Made this as a proper latte on the stove. Added some cinnamon to garnish, honey to sweeten, and even though I used skim milk, it’s still decently creamy. Well, as creamy as you can get with skim milk lol. Not as spicy as I would like, but still good.
Saturday morning drinky to wakey. Brewed strong enough to knock your teeth out.
No notes yet.
Mmmmm, Season 2 of Downton Abbey + this tea = Happiness :)
Dry, this smells pretty coconut-y with some sweetness and only a hint of spice. I steeped it for 4 minutes, and enjoyed watching all the coconut shavings swirling around. I tried a sip straight up, and decided that it definitely needs some sweetener. Added a load of milk, and threw in a bunch of rock sugar and found it to be much nicer. I don’t know about this one. There is a scent in the mix that isn’t working for me, and I’m not sure what it is. I like coconut, but I also like a spicier chai, and this one is really bland. I’m getting lots of coconut here, and if they had amped up the spice level a bit more, I think this could be a clear winner. That being said, it is still an enjoyable cup, nice and creamy and coconut-y, so if you like a smooth, blander chai and lots of coconut, then this would be a good choice. As far as the spice levels go, I was generous with the amount of tea per water, so I don’t think this is something that could be fixed with more tea. Maybe if they had added some cloves to the mix?
Backlogged from last night:
Late night comfort drink with lots of honey and milk to ease the soul and warm my heart.
Purchased from Iheartteas.com – thanks Rachel! :) Today’s cup is an old Aynsley bone china teacup, that is bright goldenrod colour, overlaid with a heavy gold floral pattern. Small flowers adorn both the centre of the cup and the saucer. It’s a very cheery, yet elegant cup. I admit that it isn’t my favourite, but for some reason, I felt drawn to it today.
Dry – very sweet smelling leaves. Smells like caramel popcorn.
Steeped 180 degrees F, for 3mins.
1st Steeping, 1st cup:
Steeped 180 degrees F, 3mins
Colour: pale yellow liquor
Slight vegetal smell, overlaid with a sweeter, caramel smell. A slight hint of nut.
Taste: Quite light, and refreshing. It’s not a sweet tasting tea, as I had first expected. I can taste the oolong, but the burnt sugar/caramel is along side of it, gently easing onto my tongue. I find the caramel more prominent at the finish.
1st Steeping, 2nd cup:
Per the Golden Moon Tea’s website, they recommend adding some sugar to help enhance the caramel flavour, as well as some milk to make it a richer cup. I only added a small amount of sugar – they suggest one teaspoon, and I imagine that would be for a larger vessel than the old teacup that I am using. I can always add more sugar if required. I also added just a dribble of milk. Hmmm, this concoction looks a little sad in my cup now. As the liquor was so pale to begin with, it looks like I’ve just poured really watered down milk into a fancy teacup LOL! Ok, I guess it doesn’t matter what it looks like, but how it tastes is what counts, right?
Well, it could just be me, but I’m not sure if the sugar really brought out the caramel. Maybe if I had used rock sugar instead of plain old white sugar, that might have made a difference. The cup is definitely sweeter tasting, but I wonder it’s perhaps taking away from the taste, not improving it. That also could be the milk too. I will need to do some experiments with it….
Another cup, with a wee bit less milk and same amount of sugar has made this grow on me, and I am getting more of the burnt sugar and caramel flavour from it. Tasty!
2nd Steeping, 1st cup, no additives:
Steeped 180 degrees F, 3mins 25secs
I noticed that the leaves had opened up more during this second steeping. Quite frankly, it smells pretty much the same as the first steeping. Maybe slightly more vegetal.
Upon tasting it, I’m not finding the sugar/caramel notes as strongly as I did in the previous steeping. As with the other cups, the caramel swoops in at the finish.
Very enjoyable, although now I’m hankering to add some milk and sugar and amp it up somewhat and make it more dessert-like.
2nd Steeping, 2nd cup, milk and sugar added
I think I’ve found the right milk/sugar combo – yum!
3rd Steeping: 1st cup, no additives:
Steeped 180 degrees F, accidentally lost track of time – maybe 4mins or so?
Just beginning to lose the caramel and sugar notes – more vegetal tasting.
Subsequent cups with milk and sugar still quite good though. Helps bring out the sweet caramel.
Not as punchy as the first 2 steepings.
4th Steeping: 1st cup, no additives:
Steeped 180 degrees F, 5mins 15secs
Becoming more bland but still nice.
More afternoon delights, sitting outside drinking afternoon tea and reading “To Marry an English Lord” yum yum!
Just gorgeous. I’m watching the last episode of Downton Abbey and felt that I needed something a little special to drink this morning. Still on my black kick, I pulled this one out of my treasure chest. A huge thank you to Rachel from Iheartteas.com for sending this to me. I cannot recommend her products and services enough. I love being able to try out so many different teas without purchasing full bags. Please do check out her online shop :)
Ok, back to the tea. I love honey. And, I also love orchids. So it seemed to me that this should be a good match for me, right? YES! Most definitely!
Dry, this tea is sweet and mouthwatering, and the leaves are really big. Brewed, I was quite surprised at how light coloured the liquor was. Much lighter than I had expected, especially for a black tea. I began to wonder if I messed up the water to tea ratio lol.
Once I poured it into my cup, I took another sniff – still honeyed sweetness, but also a very light floral was emanating. Very alluring! To taste, this tea is smooth and light, but still full of flavours – in fact, it is quite complex. On the tongue, I can taste the smooth honeyed notes, and then the floral makes a complementary appearance, finally completing to a smooth, sweet finish. Honestly, the whole experience is a delight! I haven’t even tried adding anything to my cup, as it is beautiful straight.
It is a decadent tea that deserves a fine bone china cup, and I’m pleased to have chosen an old Double Warrant stamped Paragaon, decked out gaily in blue and gold. I’m going to finish my pot, and I already have the Golden Moon website open to place an order for more of this fabulous tea.
Sitting down to watch the final two episodes of Downton Abbey – and thought, hmm, I need something different to try today rather than one of my old faithfuls. I’m on a black tea kick as of late, so I chose this one. It looks beautiful in the packaging – huge cornflowers tantalizingly dancing among the tea. And the smell! Oooh, delightful and oh so promising!
I brewed it for just over 4 minutes – I wondered if I should brew it longer, but it seems to be pretty good. It looks particularly becoming in the blush coloured E.B. Foley bone china teacup that I’m using today. The smell is slightly different than the atypical vanilla smell, I think. This one is more on the creamy side – as others have mentioned, it has a high quality ice-cream vanilla smell to it. Very lovely.
I am drinking the first cup straight (and I must note that I rarely enjoy my black teas straight), and while it isn’t very sweet to taste per se, the finish is slightly astringent with a cream vanilla aftertaste. I love a malty tea, and this one is robust, but not so much that it overpowers the vanilla. I think they have found a beautiful balance in this one.
I am so glad that I was able to get this one “out of retirement” from Iheartteas.com!
Ok, back to Downton Abbey and some Fox’s butter crinkles ;)
Monday morning…wakey wakey ;)
Creamy, delicious, smooth is how I’d describe this blend. Dried, this tea smells sweet, creamy, with a rich hit of bergamot. It is beautiful to look at with the blue mallow flowers.I tried this black for the first cup and was so surprised at how smooth it was. Not a hint of bitterness. Bergamot was strong, but not over the top – I’d say just the right amount. And the creamy goodness. Oh so creamy and softly sweet. I decided to add a wee tip of milk and just a few grains of sugar, and that just helped to develop that vanilla-y sweetness of this brew. Served in a bone china teacup only adds to the decadence of this brew. I am very impressed and will be enjoying more of this tea.
Enjoying this today in a bone china teacup, while I watch Downton Abbey. Not exactly proper English tea, but I’m enjoying it as something different. ;) A small splash of milk and a few grains of white sugar complete it. Not quite as bitter with the addition of the milk and sugar, and the caramel is really apparent today. It’s an ok tea, and I don’t love it, which is good since Teaopia is gone, and I don’t think this one is on the super list that Teavana is keeping. I just wanted a different black dessert tea. I think that I love the smell of this tea more than the actual taste. I will use up my stock of it and see if it grows on me.
ETA: I’ve bumped my rating up a notch because with the milk and sugar, it is a much nicer tea experience. I also went and double checked and sure enough, Teavana is going to keep this tea. So if you love it, you can still get it :)
Not sure of the wisdom of drinking this right before bed, but I swear this teabag just jumped right into my hand when I reached into the cupboard, so how could I resist? ;)
I put a bit too much honey into it, so it’s a bit too sweet (I can’t believe I said that, because I LOVE sweet tea – but this is a bit too much, even for me) but fortunately, the spice is peeking through the haze of sweetness, and overall it’s enjoyable on a cold, rainy night. ETA – the super pepper notes that I rebelled against in my previous tasting, appears to be hidden somewhat by all the sweetness. So I guess all this honey balanced it out a little.
EETA: Ugh, disregard, the super pepper has returned. :/
A small mug of this before lunch. Adding milk and a good dollop of honey makes this tea such a soothing treat, every single time.
Been enjoying this for the last couple of days. With Teaopia gone, I’m sad that I won’t be able to get more of this tea. Hoping I can find a replacement for it. I know Teavana kept some of the Teaopia blends, but for some reason I didn’t think this was on the list of ‘keepers’
What a beautiful tea! Dry, it’s a medley of green goodness, with chunks of pineapple and papaya as well as little red candy hearts. Just adorable. It smells wonderful – tropical, sweet, and refreshing. Tastes sweet, but not sickeningly so. Just enough to dance on your tongue and bring a smile to your face. I find it has a gentle coconut aftertaste, which is quite nice.
I’m happy to hear that Teavana is keeping this one, because I will definitely be purchasing more of this tea. It is aptly named, because you do fall under its spell ;)
Well, this one is tolerable once you add some honey and milk to it. I’m not really pleased with it and I’m very glad I only have a small bag of it. Without the additives, I can smell the spices – really getting the cardamon, clove and pepper, although it is quite…earthy? Not sure if that’s the word, but it has a earthy/dirt road smell to it. Not really sure how to describe it. Anyway, I tossed some honey into it, milk and have been sipping on it. To be honest, I was only drinking it because it was there, and I was in the middle of the gold medal match for fencing. Well, the match is over, and the mug is still half full of this stuff. I’m looking at it warily, not really sure I want to even bother with the rest of it. I guess that would mean it’s a fail. Ok, onwards to something else.