1813 Tasting Notes
Today’s cold brew. I used 1.5 tbsp of leaf in just over 1 litre of cold water, and left it in the fridge for around 12 hours overnight. The initial flavour is pineapple, and it’s pretty sweet and intense – more so than when brewed hot. The mint comes out second, but it’s not as strong or as cooling as I expected it to be. I’m sure it’s actually mostly spearmint I can taste, because it’s sweeter and gentler than peppermint even though it’s further down the ingredient list. There’s also a hint of coconut at the end of the sip, and it’s just a little soapy-tasting, but that’s the only real bum-note here for me.
It feels wrong to say it, but I preferred this one hot. It’s just a little too sweet cold, and I felt that I lost the pineapple after the initial sip. It was worth trying, though, and I still have a couple of tsp left for some hot cups before my sample is gone.
And again this morning.
This time, I used 1.5 tsp of leaf, and gave it 5 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk, but no sugar. It’s not bad, but still too light in flavour for my taste. I think I might go back to brewing this one without milk, although I know I’ll miss the creaminess and the enhanced buttery flavour that the milk seems to bring out. I’m actually finding that it’s better as it cools, and I can taste root beer just barely, but I really want MORE flavour from this one. Maybe it’s a case of finding the right leaf/milk balance so that it can really shine. Still a work in progress.
Tried again this afternoon with 2 tsp of leaf, a 4 minute brew-time, a few pieces of crystal sugar, and some milk. It helped to perk this one up a bit, I think. The butteriness is emphasised, and the root beer flavour seems a little stronger. I’m thinking it might not need the sugar, simply because it’s already quite sweet and it seems to draw the liquorice into play a little too much for my liking. I can tell it’s going to be trial and error with this one – next time, without sugar! This cup was an improvement, though, regardless.
Liquid gingerbread man! I’m actually quite surprised by how enjoyable these Twinings “Indulgence” blends are. I’m not usually a fan of their bagged green tea, but it seems sweet and buttery here, and the flavouring is impeccable. This isn’t the spiciest gingerbread tea I’ve ever tried, but it does have a very prominent biscuit-like flavour, with the ginger second and a touch of vanilla in the background. Pretty delicious, for a fuss-free cup!
1 bag, 175 degrees, 2 minutes. No additions.
I remembered to use the last of these bags for my first proper cold brew of the year! I was pretty convinced I’d forget, but for once I’ve been true to my plans. I used three bags in just over 1 litre of cold water, and left them in the fridge for around 12 hours overnight. The result is pretty delicious. The initial sip is very heavy on the peach, and quite sweet. Then the orange comes out in the mid-sip and adds a mild sharpness that complements the peach really well. The ginger emerges towards the end of the sip, and lingers as a warming spiciness in the aftertaste. It makes for a really refreshing drink, with peach the main star and reassuringly natural in terms of taste. I’m actually quite sad that I’ve finished this one – I’ll certainly look out for it this summer in case it makes a return!
This is my reblend pouch from the “old” 52 Teas, which has been sitting in my cupboard (unopened) for quite a while now. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it approximately 3 minutes in boiling water, no additions. The aroma is sweet and buttery, but I actually found the first sip to be a lot lighter on flavour than I was expecting. I’m thinking, like the Root Beer Float I drank last week, that I might need to overleaf this one a little and increase the brew time – maybe add some crystal sugar and/or milk to get the best out of it. I’ll try that next time.
This cup is nice, just a lot more watery than I was prepared for. It has a delicious buttery undertone and the herbal, almost medicinal, flavour of root beer that sums up “butterbeer” pretty accurately. I can taste the chicory lurking in the background, and I do think it adds a mild coffee-like flavour, but since it helps to add another layer of depth I’m not too bummed about tasting coffee in my tea. I think this one takes on an almost caramel-like flavour towards the end of the sip and in the aftertaste, particularly as it cools. It’s good, but I’d like my next cup to be a little stronger if I can reasonably achieve it!
I’ve left my rating as it is for now – but that was for the 12 Teas of Christmas version from, I think, 2014? I’d give this cup 65-70.
Finally got around to trying this one at work today. I let the water cool to around 175 degrees before I added the bag, because it’s a green tea and Twinings’ bagged greens in particular seem very prone to scorching. I gave it approximately 2 minutes, after which the liquor is a medium green-brown.
I expected a degree of bitterness, and so I was pleasantly surprised to find none. There’s a sweet candy cherry flavour that’s maybe a touch reminiscent of cough medicine, rescued by a background note of almond/frangipane that makes this much more reminiscent of a dessert. There’s even a butteriness to the green tea that suggests pastry. The best thing by far, though, is the distinctive flavour of glace icing. Combined with the cherry, almond and pastry notes, it makes for a pretty delicious cup! I rarely commend bagged teas, but this one’s worth the hype. I’d repurchase this for fuss-free spring/summer drinking. It’s a sweet, desserty treat.
First iced tea of the year! I know it was a bad choice, but the return of the hot weather (and it’s REALLY hot today) caught me unprepared and I reached for the nearest cold thing. It happened to be this, from my parent’s Dolche Gusto machine. The thought also appealed because I’ve had a good few peach teas in the last week or so, and I’ve enjoyed them all, so continuing the peach theme…
This is okay. If you like ultra sweet, ultra artificial iced “tea” then this is perfect. I don’t, really. I mean, I like sweet things up to a point, but this one goes overboard for me. There’s also very little tea in here. It’s the right colour for iced tea, but you can’t actually taste it. I think it’s an “extract” rather than actual tea, given that the pod is full of some kind of powder and sugar, but as the main flavour is clearly supposed to be fake peach then maybe I should have expected that.
I can’t say this was enjoyable as a tea, but as a cold thing on a hot day it ticked one box. I’d not choose to drink it again, though. There are so many better things around.
A sample from Miss B! Clearly I’m in a peachy mood at the moment, because yesterday’s sample pick was Tetley’s Bellini which is also peach-flavoured. Maybe because it’s warmer outside now and I’m thinking of summer? Anyway, I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3 minutes in boiling water, no additions. This is another blend that I think would be good iced, but it’s also pretty good hot so I’ve no complaints about today’s preparation method.
Peach is the main flavour, and it’s a wonderfully sweet, fuzzy, yet natural-tasting peach. Like peach juice, really. There’s a mild undertone of ginger lurking around in the background, but it doesn’t really deliver much of a kick. If anything, it just serves to emphasise how sweet the peach is. The one thing I did notice is that this tea doesn’t have much of an aftertaste – it seems to become very flat-tasting quite suddenly at the end of the sip, which I don’t think I’ve ever really encountered before.
On the whole, though, I enjoyed this one. It’s nice to find a peach tea that isn’t hopelessly artificial, and the ginger here is a welcome addition and not at all overpowering. A great cup on a hot day!
Sipdown! This one has been sitting in my cupboard for ages. It was my least favourite of the three Teatoxy blends I tried, one of which I really enjoyed. I adore it for its novelty value – blue tea is a talking point, if nothing else, but I wasn’t over keen on the flavour (I think it was the pandan, but there was something thick and brothy with an edge of intense sweetness that drowned out everything else for me.) I also didn’t feel I gained much from this in terms of the promised energy boost, but maybe that was a little much to expect anyway. I’d not repurchase this one – matcha, guayusa and mate are my go-to energy boost teas, and they generally taste better to boot.