David Rio

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Sipdown (609)!

Finished this one off as an almond milk latte; which was pretty tasty but not all that different from any of the other Chais that I’ve had from David Rio. Perhaps a TINY bit heavier on the spice? Regardless, I think I’m done with this company again for a while – it was nice to do a bit more of a deep dive into some of their other offerings, but I’ve had enough at this point now…

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Sipdown, but I don’t get to count the number decrease because I forgot to put it into my Steepster cupboard…

Made this as a latte using another of those “single serve” packets; I expected this to taste basically like every other David Rio chai I’ve had from them – creamy, sweet, sugary, and tinted with vanilla. I was surprised though; this was actually quite a fair bit less over the top sweet and sugary as the other’s I’ve had! Also, though, it just felt like it was lacking body!? Which is a really hard thing for a tea to do in latte form, I find.

I don’t think it’s because this was a sugar free sample – I tried the Orca chai which is sugar free and I didn’t observe any issues with that one or weird flavour decrease. So, then, the only thing that it seems could be the cause is the fact that this chai flavour is also decaf? Which does make some sense – the process to decaffeinate tea usually does strip flavour from the leaf as well. I just sort of expected that David Rio would compensate for that by really pumping up the vanilla notes.

And you know what? I can’t decide if I’m disappointed or not that they didn’t…

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Latte Sipdown (612)!

I don’t know that this flavor was really much different than any of the other David Rio instant chais – they’re all pretty similar in terms of flavour: sweet, creamy, mildly spiced. This was the “sugar free” one, but it was still quite sweet. I think it’s sweetened with sucralose!?

I recently purchased a Breville milk frother though (up until now I’ve been making lattes at home stove top, and frothed with a hand frother) and so getting a couple of these “single serve” pouches of David Rio’s chai teas has been a really good excuse to just make a ton of lattes. Not that I needed an excuse to want a yummy latte, but also I’m not going to ignore having one…

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It’s been a while since I explored anything from David Rio – years, in fact. I’m happy to see that they still seem to be doing pretty well though; I’ve always really loved their endangered animal species angel…

I don’t think this tea existed the first time I dove into their line up – but it’s something that I totally would have been interested in at the time. Drinking it now, mixed into hot frothed milk, and… I think I had forgotten just how sweet this one tastes. It’s not bad though; just MIGHTY rich. As a not overly big Chai drinker I am of course driven to this sweeter sort of flavour – it’s softer on the spice, decadent/indulgent, and creamy as fuck. So, basically like a sugar chai!? Not really a chai for a chai drinkers but something more in line for someone like me who isn’t really all that into chai in the first place.

Also, I feel like I detected a citrus note too, and I loved that little aspect in the cup.

So if this the highest quality chai tea in the world? Oh heck no. However, it definitely works for what it’s intended for – a sweet, instant chai that is probably more for someone who isn’t a typical chai tea drinker.

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99

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81
drank Mint Chocolate Infusion by David Rio
2765 tasting notes

Very good for re-steeping (considering it is a bagged tea). I usually get 3 cups/small pots out of it. Balanced mint and chocolate flavour. Not my favourite mint chocolate, but I really enjoy this tea.

Flavors: Chocolate, Dark Chocolate, Mint, Peppermint, Round , Sweet

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 6 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 17 OZ / 500 ML

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85

Andrew recommended it, and it turns out to be a familiar friend from Grand River Coffee. I don’t like chai powder chalky mixes, but I really liked this one. I think the mango makes all the difference. And the sugar. Mom even liked it and she is not a chai fan.

Liquid Proust

It’s a crowd pleaser, trust me. Everyone loves it when I make it!

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70

Oddly enough, I normally like green chais just a little more than the blacks on occasion. I got this at one of the coffee shops I used to go to in East Lansing (now closed, which greatly irks me!) and I would get it with steamed almond milk. It is really good with that combo. I could see why it might be better with regular milk, because this latte mix is very sweet, gingery, and green. Yet that might depend on preference.

This is the chai for green tea lovers, especially green tea with some sort of cream and sweetener. The biggest drawback is how sweet it is, and possibly the ingredients for people who want to eat cleaner.

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Backlog.

Blech. Of course, as I was writing “blech”, I actually looked at the teabag wrapper, and apparently this is a green tea…… whoops. So perhaps I shouldn’t be so quick to judge, since the boiling water I poured on it yesterday might have been a touch harsh. My recollection is of astringent vague-berriness… so perhaps I wouldn’t like it even if brewed correctly, but hopefully I have another one of these somewhere to give it a second chance. I feel like I may have done this to the tea previously as well…

teataku

You’re not alone. I’ve definitely ruined a few cups for myself that way…

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77
drank Tiger Spice Chai by David Rio
1908 tasting notes

Bleh, it’s wet and miserable outside today so I treated myself to a chai latté. This is apparently David Rio’s default mix and it’s quite nice, I had it will 2 oz boiling water and about 6 oz hot skim milk that I’d given a bit of a froth. The downside of using skim is that it doesn’t stay foamy for very long due to the lower fat content, but that means I just have to be quick about enjoying my latté, right? ;)

There’s a good , well-balanced mix of spices and it gives this mix a pleasent warmth. It’s maybe a bit sweeter than I care for but most mixes are I’ve found (I’m the person who always has her sbux drinks half-sweet). It’s a nice mix to have on hand for days when you don’t want to fiddle with making chai the old-school way.

Fjellrev

How do you heat/froth your milk anyway? I’ve been far too lazy to make a proper latte despite the fact I purchased an IKEA handheld milk frother months ago.

Jillian

I usually just heat the milk in a pyrex measuring cup in the microwave (just be careful that it doesn’t boil) and use a hand-held frother to whip it up and pour it into the tea (or the mix in this case) in my drinking mug. I also usually add a bit of boiling water (usually like 1/4 cup) to the mug first to raise the temperature.

Fjellrev

Ok cool, thanks, that seems like the best way, really.

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Brewed this with cashew milk and it was incredibly sweet. This is definitely best paired with traditional milk.

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I brewed this up the same way I made the Elephant Vanilla Chai and I expected something more green tea tasting. In reality I just got a less vanilla-y version of the elephant chai. Weird but delicious! Thanks Roswell Strange.

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drank Elephant Vanilla Chai by David Rio
4547 tasting notes

So I realized today what I was really tasting…snickerdoodles complete with vanilla icing. Oh so delicious. Thank you for sharing Roswell Strange!! I think I may be taking a trip to Sobeys to get more of this in the future.

Roswell Strange

I’ve decided I’m gonna mix this into some frosting for cupcakes next time I made them. Either Butter Pecan with Chai icing or Chocolate with Chai…

VariaTEA

Both would be pretty tasty. I’m more partial for butter pecan but only because I’m not a huge lover of chocolate cake. However chocolate chai is pretty tasty so I’m sure either would be awesome.

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drank Elephant Vanilla Chai by David Rio
4547 tasting notes

My tea twin Roswell Strange sent me a sample of this and it was sooo good! I wasn’t sure quite how to make it so I put two tsps in hot milk and let it stir in my machine. The result? A super creamy cup of awesomeness. It tasted somewhat like vanilla frosted Cheerios and it was amazing. I will definitely be having more soon. Thanks Roswell Strange!!

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drank Power Chai Matcha by David Rio
894 tasting notes

Thank you to Liquid Proust for sending this my way.

I made this in my travel mug yesterday as I was running out the door. The directions on the website seemed a little excessive (3-4 tbsp for 7oz of liquid??), so I went with 3tbsp for about 12oz of hot water, plus a couple of spoons of powdered milk (all out of the fresh stuff.)

It was quite potent at that concentration, and didn’t even fully blend. There was no distinct matcha taste, just lots of nice, spicy chai flavour, predominantly cinnamon.

I will need to try this soon with fresh milk, as I’m not a fan of powdered, and with a bit less mix – maybe as a latte in the blender.

Enjoyable, and I think this will probably go fast.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Clove, Spicy

Preparation
9 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Liquid Proust

Told you its strong! You can now understand how someone who isn’t a fan of black tea wouldn’t like this- even if the spices are very inviting to drink from the smell alone.

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I have purchased this chai multiple times because it is popular among my friends. This chai is one of the strongest chais I have tasted so far. I am not sure if this product has changed in the last few years since the last reviews, but this product is absolutely amazing. Adjusting the flavor by powder to water (or milk) is very simple and provides a variety of strength for other drinkers.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C

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This was a sample from Roswell Strange. I’ve tried the vanilla and maple versions of it, and this one is a “plain” version but it has a green tea base instead of black. I mixed the whole sample, which looked to be about two tablespoons, with 8 ounces of hot unsweetened soy milk.

I must say, it’s just okay for me. The level of sweetness is somewhat high, but I tend to like sweet things so it’s not really a problem for me. I do find the spicing to be a bit too mild, I would call it more of a mildly spiced creamy beverage than a chai. I also can’t taste the green tea, which makes me question the point of doing a green tea-based version. It’s perfectly drinkable and tasty and decadent, but I see no reason to purchase this version over the black tea one.

Flavors: Creamy, Smooth, Spices, Sweet

Preparation
6 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Nicole

I like this one with matcha. The only thing I like when matcha is involved. :)

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80

365 Days of Tea Challenge – Day 32

I added a canister of this to an Amazon order to reach the $35 free same-day shipping threshold. So I decided to have some today, since it’s been chilly everywhere lately and a cozy latte sounded nice! I actually prepared mine with vanilla oat milk, which I haven’t tried before and bought to try out. (I really don’t enjoy dairy milk, so I like to try different alternatives. But honestly I don’t use milk for anything other than tea and matcha lattes…)

So this is a delicious sugar bomb. But I’m okay with that, because it’s exactly what I was expecting. Plus if I’m going to have a decadent chai latte, I want it to be sweet.

As far as the spices go, I would say there’s definitely cinnamon and clove here, and perhaps also some anise? There’s definitely a rich, creamy vanilla flavor as well.

Overall, it’s exactly what I was expecting – sweet and rich and not too spicy. Definitely hits the spot as a decadent and cozy latte! :)

https://www.instagram.com/p/BtWkDU9FgPS/

Flavors: Anise, Cinnamon, Clove, Creamy, Spices, Sugar, Sweet, Vanilla

Preparation
18 OZ / 532 ML
Evol Ving Ness

hahahaha, boy, am I happy that I am oblivious to same day delivery service.

Kittenna

Chais are definitely my guilty pleasure – the only tea I prefer to drink sweetened and milky. Yum.

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80

Miss Roswell Strange was nice enough to send me a sample of this and the Green Tortoise version. She works at a grocery store and they carry David Rio chai mixes. I’ve tried the Maple Moose flavor before and liked it a lot, though I will admit that these mixes are very sweet. However, I have a huge sweet tooth so I like sugary drinks sometimes. So I’m happy I get to try a couple more flavors! This powder is a pale reddish-brown color and it smells sweet and vanilla-y with some spice. I used the whole sample (somewhere around 2 tablespoons I think?) in 8 ounces of hot vanilla soy milk. Double vanilla!

Mm, so thick and creamy and decadent! Sometimes it’s nice to have a sweet and super rich beverage, although I suppose that’s why so many people go to Starbucks. I’m not one of those people, so this is a nice treat for me! It’s very vanilla due to the soy milk, and I love vanilla. The spicing is present but still mild enough that it doesn’t overpower the vanilla flavor. I would say there’s definitely cinnamon and clove, possibly anise? Overall, yums! :) I would totally keep some of this around for a treat every once in a while. And I bet mixing this half-and-half with the maple would be amazing!

Flavors: Anise, Cinnamon, Clove, Spices, Sweet, Vanilla

Preparation
6 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Nicole

Mmm… vanilla soy milk with this sounds yum!

Cameron B.

That’s generally all I ever have for “milk”. :P

Nicole

I generally have 2% or 1% moo-milk but when I want it in tea I usually want that creamy texture so I have cream or half-and-half. Soy milk sounds like a less fat filled option. :)

Cameron B.

I’m not a fan of actual cow’s milk so I generally only use it in baking and such.

Roswell Strange

I like having these two around as well because I can get Tre to drink them; to him it’s like drinking fancy hot chocolate. Plus, part of the sale price goes to animals! :)

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75

I gave this one to my mom years ago, and she still has it! I guess I can’t judge too much; I totally still have the Elephant Chai from this company that I bought at the same time…

Just like old times, I actually used this one as a popcorn topping; mixed a tiny bit into some melted butter that I drizzled over the popcorn and then sprinkled a bit of the loose powder on top of the popcorn as well. I really, really enjoy that sort of sweet, buttery (literally) chai flavour on popcorn; it perfectly rode that line between sweet and savory for me and made for a GREAT snack.

Thanks for letting me steal some of this from your stash, mom!

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75

Sipdown (130)!

Ok, I cheated with this one…

I don’t drink it often at all so I decided to brew up a mug and just confirm that it’s something I can live without before giving it to my mom to bring to work for her staff room. And, yup – I can confirm that while this certainly isn’t bad it’s not something I need to have a whole tin of at home just sitting around. Firstly, I’m not a chai fan. And secondly not a green tea fan either…

So I’m giving away the tin! I’m still keeping the black one though ‘cause I use that as a popcorn topping and it is nice to have something instant around for people who aren’t big tea drinkers and for when I’m feeling especially lazy or sick.

Flavors: Cardamon, Cinnamon, Clove, Cookie, Ginger, Vanilla

VariaTEA

These teas were delicious but when I checked their calorie content, it was pretty high for a cup of tea. It was nice to try but not something I would want to use the calories for tbh.

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75

I tried making a dip today using this, some peanut butter, and some chocolate cream cheese. It didn’t work out all that well; while it tasted fine (equal parts flavour of all three ingredients) it was very gritty from the undissolved Chai powder, and then weirdly slimy from the peanut butter/cream cheese concoction.

Nope; not repeating that. It’s a shame; I’ve been struggling using this up…

Nichole/CuppaGeek

That sounds like an odd one.

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75

Quick little blast of tasting notes for tonight;

I work very early in the morning tomorrow (like I did today and will the day after tomorrow) so I need to get some sleep pronto; but I wont feel good about myself if I’m adding to my queue so I need to write notes for as many (if not more) teas that I drank today. That way, at least, my queue stays the same number instead of growing.

Today’s word of the day was: Proliferate. Which means to grow or increase in number rapidly. My use of this one today is simply that I hope the number of backlogged tasting notes in my queue doesn’t proliferate. And, because I’m not totally sure if I’ll be writing tomorrow – here’s tomorrow’s word of the day so you can all get a head start on that too!

So for January 15th: Telecommute. Telecommute means to work at home by the use of an electronic link up with a central office. Definitely not sure how I’m going to use that one tomorrow!

As for the ‘tea’; back when I had this one I prepared it like I would a cup of instant hot chocolate, and then added in a little splash of Southern Butter Pecan creamer. Not a lot though; I wanted to add more flavour to the tea but not overwhelm or dominate it. As would be expected with creamer added in; this was rather creamy, with a silky, soft mouthfeel. I picked up on the spices from the “Chai” – clove, ginger and cinnamon mostly, but it was gentle and non-intrusive.

Like the Elephant Chai version of this with vanilla I’m reminded of ginger bread or ginger snaps a little bit but this blend is less naturally sweet and does have a very light buttery vegetal quality from the green base. It’s not a massive distinction though. With the flavouring from the creamer the nuttier notes of the green base were drastically played up; it worked well!

I want to continue to experiment with this one, but not as a drink. I’m thinking more like a “seasoning”; I wonder if I could turn it into a ‘rub’ of sorts (though I don’t eat meat or seafood so not sure what I’d rub it onto) or use it as a popcorn topping!? Thoughts to ponder.

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