A tremendous dried peach fragrance wafted out of the sample packet as soon as I opened it. The mix is another chunky dried fruit trail-mixy sort, but it looks more like trail mix than some of the others I’ve had because it’s all neutral colors: tans, browns, burgundies, off whites.

It yields a really interesting colored liquor. The first time I tried it, I don’t think I used enough fruit and it made a dark peach, red melon sort of color that was gorgeous and gave off a light peach fragrance. The second time, I doubled the fruit to water ratio and got a dark red, hibiscus inspired color, just as gorgeous in its own way.

This isn’t unique among fruit mixes in that I find that I had to use a lot more of the fruit to achieve the flavor I was hoping for than one might expect to based on spoon measurements or even weights. The first time, I used two cups worth of fruit for two cups of tea, and it was tasty but a little watery and though I could taste the sweetness lurking, it was a little tart because the lurking sweetness was diluted. I pretty much doubled the weight one would expect to use for one cup the second time and got a much less watery, much more flavorful drink. It’s a sweet, peachy flavor with an earthy hibiscus base, but fortunately the presence of rose hips and hibiscus don’t render it puckeringly tart or bitter.

This is tasty, but I think the real thumb on the scale as to whether I’d order more will be if the boyfriend likes it. He’s a huge peach fan (he just had peach ice cream for dessert tonight) whereas I am a more moderate fan except in those occasional instances where the peach is ripe, juicy, and has a superconcentrated flavor.

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Mmm. Peach ice cream. I remember making some with fresh-picked peached when I’d visit family in Georgia. So good.

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Mmm. Peach ice cream. I remember making some with fresh-picked peached when I’d visit family in Georgia. So good.

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I got obsessed with tea in 2010 for a while, then other things intruded, then I cycled back to it. I seem to be continuing that in for a while, out for a while cycle. I have a short attention span, but no shortage of tea.

I’m a mom, writer, gamer, lawyer, reader, runner, traveler, and enjoyer of life, literature, art, music, thought and kindness, in no particular order. I write fantasy and science fiction under the name J. J. Roth.

Personal biases: I drink tea without additives. If a tea needs milk or sugar to improve its flavor, its unlikely I’ll rate it high. The exception is chai, which I drink with milk/sugar or substitute. Rooibos and honeybush were my gateway drugs, but as my tea skills and tastes developed they became less appealing to me — but I still enjoy nicely done blends where the base doesn’t taste like hamster cage chips. I do not mix well with tulsi or yerba mate, and savory teas are more often a miss than a hit with me. That said, I’m not entirely a purist and I enjoy a good flavored tea, particularly flavored blacks.

I like all kinds of tea depending on time of day, mood, and the amount of time I have to pay attention to preparation. These days, I’ve been drinking primarily green tea during weekdays after my first cup of coffee. On weekends, I’ve been drinking only tea.

Since I find others’ rating legends helpful, I added my own. But I don’t really find myself hating most things I try.

I try to rate teas in relation to others of the same type, for example, Earl Greys against other Earl Greys. But if a tea rates very high with me, it’s a stand out against all other teas I’ve tried.

95-100 A once in a lifetime experience; the best there is

90-94 First rate; top notch; really terrific; will definitely buy more

80-89 Excellent; will likely buy more

70-79 Very good; would enjoy again, might buy again

60-69 Good; wouldn’t pass up if offered, but likely won’t buy again

Below 60 Meh, so-so, iffy, or ick. The lower the number, the closer to ick.

People have sent me tea on occasion, and I was once persuaded to send some Tazo Om to AmazonV. I’ve also done at least one group buy here on Steepster, the famous Doulton-led Dammann Freres experiment years ago. But mostly, I don’t swap. It’s nothing personal, it’s just that I have way more tea than any one person needs and am not lacking for new things to try. Also, I have way too much going on already in daily life and the additional commitment to get packages to people adds to my already high stress level. (Maybe it shouldn’t, but it does.)

That said, I enjoy reading folks’ notes, talking about what I drink, and getting to “know” people virtually here on Steepster so I can get ideas of other things I might want to try if I can ever again justify buying more tea. I also like keeping track of what I drink and what I thought about it, though I don’t put samples in my cupboard and not everything I have at any given time is showing in my cupboard. I do try to remember to remove things from my cupboard once I no longer have them.

I was an early internet adopter and have been online in various environments since around 1990. Steepster is one of the nicest online environments I’ve ever been privileged to participate in and that is saying something. :-)


Bay Area, California



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