Thank you for the sample, NM Tea co. I’ve never had a tea that attempts to mimic wine before and was very excited to try this. I’m so grateful that there a couple of mugs-worth in the packet because it’s going to take me a few tries before I figure out how I feel about this one. On first impression I like it a lot.

This is a nice floral tea. I wasn’t expecting that and thought it would be more on the sweet and fruity side from the name and the smell of the dry leaf. There’s a hint of roses, with a sweetness that drifts up from the liquor’s aroma. The base is also giving me those crisp and fresh cucumber-melon notes, which contribute to a sense of sweetness.

The same profile that reminds me vaguely of roses also lends itself to a flavour that I can only describe as grapey- I get this more near the finish and when I inhale and sip (I probably look funny). The aftertaste, in particular, is fruity sweet. It does make me think of a sweet wine.

Second steep accidentally went over six minutes and tastes a lot like the first steep. It’s silky with a mildly fruity astringent finish.

I have yet to try a Riesling, and the one icewine I’ve had the pleasure to sample was of the red variety, so I can’t fairly say how this tea holds up to what it’s trying to imitate. My obsession with Silver Needle has also made me neglect getting familiar with White Peony, the base of this tea. I’ll have to amend some of these things.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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Bio

I started my Steepster loose leaf adventure back in 2012. I can’t say I’m completely new anymore, but I still view oolong as a magical, extraterrestrial creature that unfurls in water.

My favourite teas are stuff like Milk Oolong, Dragonwell, Silver Needle, Japanese Sencha, Kenyan White Rhino… but I generally enjoy all the tea.

FAVOURITE INGREDIENTS/NOTES:

DESSERT FLAVOURS
Vanilla, Maple, Caramel, Butterscotch, Cream, Toffee, Nougat, Marzipan, Butter

FRUIT & BERRIES
Blackberry, Raspberry, Currants, Blueberry, Elderberry, Banana, Melon, Pineapple, Persimmon

CITRUS
Lime, Grapefruit, Lemon, Bergamot, Yuzu (orange is a hit or miss)

SPICES
Anise (but not licorice), Ginger, Clove-forward chai

EARTHY & HERBACEOUS NOTES
Musky, “Fresh,” and/or Woody Incense-like stuff: Sandalwood, Frankincense, Eucalyptus, Mints

FLORALS
Lavender, Jasmine, Rose, Lilac, etc. ALL the flowers!

VEGGIE/GRAIN NOTES
Spinach, Grass, Hay, Cucumber, Rice, Sweet Potato

Less Preferred Flavours/Ingredients:

- Stevia and most sweeteners
- Cinnamon-forward blends
- Prunes
- Dark Roasts (oolong)
- Orange (if it’s a creamsicle)
- Mango pieces (love mango outside of tea though)
- Coconut pieces (as a sub/filler ingredient)
- Cocoa Nibs, 95% of the time.

Subjective Rating System 3.0:

90-100: My absolute favourite tea. I’ll impulsively buy in large quantities and hoard like a dragon.

85-89: A favourite tea. I’ll try to keep this one around when it’s practical.

76-84: A good tea, but lower on my “to repurchase” list

70-75: Alright, but I may have a few problems with quality, consistency, ingredient chemistry, or personal preferences.

50-69: Average to mediocre cup. Personal preference issues are apparent.

11-49: Varying levels of undrinkable tea. I don’t give a lot of these ratings out, since I tend to grab tea I know will appeal to me.

1-10: Nightmare tea from the chaos realms. This tea is the embodiment of the primordial swamp, the unholy abomination that is a chimera. It’s very gross and I’m almost positive it doesn’t exist.

Location

BC, Canada

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