For Tea's SakeEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
Hot cuppa in the evening, as sort of a bedtime tea.
I added some lemon flavoured honey to try and inject some sweetness and flavour into this tea but it didn’t do a lot to help the overall profile of the tea – basically still just a very, very intense chamomile flavour which just isn’t for me. Nope. No can do. I wish it tasted better/like something other than chamomile but even this lovely honey can’t completely redeem this one for me. I mean, I expected to not like it but…
I was hopeful that I’d be pleasantly surprised.
From last week.
Really thick, viscous and almost syrupy mouthfeel with deep woody notes, some cinnamon, and almost candied red apple notes. Very well balanced and interesting profile overall; it made me deeply like cinnamon sugar crepes or French Toast. Something about the sweetness of the spice overall and thickness of the mouthfeel…
Sipping on this one now.
It’s ok, but pretty simplistic in the flavour profile. I mean, it’s essentially just an apple cinnamon rooibos and that’s not exactly a ‘new’ or ‘edgy’ flavour combo/pairing. I just think it tastes like a more toned down version of DAVIDsTEA’s Cinnamon Rooibos Chai blend with a punchier apple element.
I’m really sick today; bad cold and super stuffy nose that’s throwing my sense of taste painfully out of wack. I chose this one as my late night cup of tea today because it’s caffeine free and has enough body flavour/spice that despite being sick I can still taste it. It also tastes really good, and very smooth with the spices and sweet apple/hibiscus notes having a very soothing/comforting quality to them. I’m actually, much to my surprise, really sad to be done with this one because it was a hell of a good Chai that deeply appealed to me as someone who likes sweeter, fruitier chais that aren’t overly ginger heavy – all of which are applicable to this one.
I’ll be keeping an eye out for this one at Chapter’s next winter for sure to see if they bring it back again for the holidays, and if so I’m sure I’ll likely grab a tin of it!
Drank a mug of this one yesterday.
I don’t often appreciate Chai blends but this one was actually pretty solid. More medium bodied than the typical full bodied chai, I really appreciated the overall sweetness and fruit undertones (apple) present in this on top of the softer spice elements. Prominent spice notes were cinnamon and ginger but both complimented the apple. Even the very small amount of hibiscus, which I think was probably mostly meant to lend colour to the blend so it looked softly red and welcoming/festive, didn’t clash with everything else.
This will be an easier chai sample for me to finish off, for sure.
Steeped up, this morning, this smells delicious with full on vanilla, hints of caramel and something tart like cranberry. Maybe a bit of almond too. My first sip or two or three continues those flavours with a bit of astringency at the end of the sip.. Spice is very much in the background here for me today. My spoon of leaf must have contained a whole different combination of flavours than it did previously. Nice.
On my second steep, a bit of clove is coming up with the astringency.
I wouldn’t run out and buy a tin, but I would certainly consider splitting one. This is a gentle black to drink without any additions.
Just finished the last sip and can say that enjoyed this tea up to the last drop. Nice when that happens.
Thank you for the sample, VariaTEA.
And it’s a sip down!
Flavors: Almond, Caramel, Cranberry, Vanilla
I was a bit alarmed when a whole clove bud leapt out of the dry leaf, but I needn’t have been. The spice mix is pleasant enough: mostly clove and ginger plus something vaguely eggnoggy. More chai-like than eggnog really, but still more on the gentle side of chai.
Imagine that it would make a dynamite latte with sweetener, but currently, I am drinking everything black and unsweetened.
Thank you, VariaTEA, for including this among your samples. I am enjoying it.
Flavors: Cloves, Ginger
I HATE TEAS WITH NAMES LIKE THIS.
Sipping on this currently; it’s kind of garbage. Basically, it tastes like lawn clippings, wilting flowers, and movie theater butter. I don’t like the combination of flavour notes, and I loathe the name of the blend. That doesn’t leave much, if anything, redeeming here at all. Bleh. Bleh. Bleh.
Funnily enough, this is the second tea named “Let It Snow” currently in my cupboard. I don’t get the appeal of the name; it’s pretty fucking cheesy as far as these winter themed tea names go and not indicative at all of what the flavour of the tea is gonna be…
I think this is basically just a straight EG though which is something that’s definitely NOT exciting to me at all. As such, I skipped over doing the whole plain, basic infusion tasting to get a feel of the tea ‘cause realistically if you’ve tried a dozen+ straight EG teas you’ve kind of tried them all. Instead I steeped it hot, with some very foamy/frothy milked scooped onto the top to form a pillow for me to sprinkle candy cane shards on top of.
Now that’s how you take a boring tea and make it fun, flavourful, and festive! It was only ok though; I mean, the tea itself is just really boring/bland and there’s only so much candy cane shards can do to turn that around. I essentially just made a cup of EG with mint, and while it was drinkable it was hardly a “treat”. Bleh.
Wow, this one was mighty intense as a cold brew! Like, I took a sip and I was fully and completely smacked with the mint which had such a great, menthol heavy finish. It was very much the same sensation as deeply inhaling air when it’s like -40C outside,
which happens quite a lot in Saskatchewan during the winter. When your whole body it outside in that kind of terrible weather it sucks but the sensation of such crisp, cooling mint when you’re in a warm environment is actually kind of wonderful.
This was a great cold brew.
Got this one in For Tea’s Sake’s “Festive Sampler” – to be perfectly honest, had it not been in the sample I 100% would NOT have bought it.
So, those who’ve been around Steepster for a while know that while I don’t have any issues with mint I don’t generally drink straight peppermint. Aside from the fact that it’s kind of boring, I had a REALLY bad peppermint experience years ago where I found maggots in a specific tea company’s pure peppermint. I 100% will NOT touch that company’s straight peppermint anymore – but I don’t blame the company itself. I mean, tea is a botanical product and stuff like that is just bound to happen every now and then. Shit happens. Still, it’s left me in a spot where straight peppermint teass send me back to that experience and I get the stomach wibby wobblys.
In fact – before I brewed this one up I emptied out the sample tin of it and just looked through the leaf. Just in case…
Once I was assured this was good to go, it actually wasn’t bad though. I mean, there is the aforementioned thing where as a flavour it’s kind of boring – HOWEVER, I did think that this one in particular was pretty smooth and fresh, and thought it packed a pretty good minty punch while still having that relaxing quality a good peppermint tea should have. It’s because of that relaxing quality that this will probably be my last tea of the night ’cause boy am I tired now! And good thing too, I work really early in the morning tomorrow and I really ought to be getting to bed…
So it super sucks that the first time I really feel like I’m actually getting the flavour of REAL eggnog from this tea is also the cup where I’m finishing it off…
I don’t know what the difference was this time around: only thing special I did was add a splash of milk to it!? However, this was really rich, sweet and creamy, and custardy with that strong eggnog-y flavour and then nice supporting cinnamon/nutmeg and vanilla notes. I enjoyed it immensely, actually. I’m just super bummed out that it didn’t taste like that the whole time I had it.
Hot and straight this time.
This one still doesn’t taste like eggnog to me, but I do feel like I got a bit of creaminess in this cup that sort of grasped at those flavours. I mean, it was more of a vanilla flavour than anything else but it’s definitely better than nothing. Apart from that, I tasted cinnamon and clove, with hints of a sweet ginger note in the finish. In so far as mouthfeel, it was a bit murky/muddy and definitely not the smoothest liquor in the world. Still a decent flavour overall.
I think better than the last time, with milk.
Hot, with a touch of milk.
The sample comes from VariaTEA and it’s one I’m especially glad that she sent because I very nearly bought some of this over the Christmas season when I saw it at Chapters. In the end, I just couldn’t commit to blindly buying that large of a quantity.
I think I’m happy I made the decision I did though – it’s not that I disliked the tea in any way when I drank it today, though. The problem for me was just that it didn’t taste like eggnog to me. Mostly, it was a vanilla/cinnamon flavour with some other nice, soft underlying spices such as clove and nutmeg. Maybe a hint of ginger, too?
I’m sure I’ll finish the sample she sent with ease – but this is not eggnog, and that’s what I would have wanted from it were I to buy it for myself.
This tea has definitely got pu-erh in it. So, points for that flavor still being able to come through with all the rest that’s going on. :) The first few sips are QUITE bitter, because I didn’t add any cream/milk or anything, just a Perfect Tea Scoop of sugar like I normally would with a flavored black. So the coffee makes the first few sips a little too astringent… but about five or six sips in, my palate adjusted, and I can really taste just about everything that’s going on, except the chamomile (not sure what chamomile is doing in this blend, anyway, as it’s never going to outshine the pu-erh OR the coffee. The black tea base is also pretty muted, but if it was all pu-erh, I wonder if we’d even taste the coffee. So I’ll allow that the black tea serves a purpose. Overall, I am not as turned off by this as I was afraid I might be. The price point was good, so I might consider purchasing it again, if the hubs likes it.
Flavors: Caramel, Coffee, Dark Chocolate, Wet Earth
Kind of like a floral, sweet cinnamon and clove sort of thing? Once again I definitely did not get plum from this one in terms of flavour. Weirdly, though, I did get a surprising amount of elderflower and elderberry flavour!? Not a damn clue what in the blend made it taste like that but it was actually pretty nice.
Very average tasting cuppa overall though.
From the For Tea’s Sake holiday sampler.
I definitely tried this one last year, and I was not a fan so I wasn’t thrilled to receive it in the sampler but I tried to have an open mind brewing it up. I still don’t think it’s a great tea, but something must have changed because I did have a better experience with it. I don’t know if that change comes down to a formula change for the tea itself or if my palate has just changed – or maybe I just knocked preparation out of the park. Who knows?
I do think it does have more spice notes that a “Sugar Plum” blend should have, but at least I actually did taste plum this time around! It was a very dark, rich plum taste with lots of clove, and cinnamon undertones. Also, a brisk flavour in the cup for sure but no awful astringency this time around! As a spiced plum blend, this could be quite good and I guess I can see the finer/festive appeal of these flavour pairings. Just…
It’s called Sugar Plum. Don’t you think it should be a sweet plum blend!?
Song Pairing: https://youtu.be/A0Ws3rB5eg0