Southern Boy TeasEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
Back to my (diminishing) stash of SBTs! This one called to me most of those left, being the only fruity option. Something about hot weather requires berry tea, I suppose, or at least it does in my estimation. I gave this one the usual treatment, except that I let the water cool for a while first until it was around 180. I always worry that these will turn out bitter, but somehow they never do. I took the bag out after 2.5 minutes, but I could probably have steeped it a bit longer and it would still have been okay.
In flavour terms, it’s your standard mixed berry. It reminds me a little of 52Teas Razzleberry, although maybe a bit less sweet. It’s hard to pick out specific flavours since it’s kind of generic “berry” and a bit muddled for all that, but I’d probably go with raspberry, blackberry, and maybe blueberry. The green base is pleasant – smooth and not too grassy. I’m sure it would have worked equally well on the black base SBT originally used, but a change is no bad thing. It’s pleasant and refreshing, and makes for a solidly pleasing iced tea.
I should probably add that I feel disposed to be positive about everything today, since I found out yesterday afternoon that I have a new job!. The pay and terms are only a little better than those I have now, but the real satisfaction for me is that I’ll be leaving a job and company I’ve come to abhor, and my new job (while fairly boring) sounds like a whole lot less hassle. When I list the things I won’t have to do/put up with anymore, it’s more than worthwhile. It honestly feels like 10 tons have been taken off my shoulders, and I am so looking forward to making a fresh start.
I used to really like this one in its 52Teas days, so it’s making me feel all nostalgic to be drinking it again today. It’s pretty much as I remember it – cinnamon being the main flavour, with an added touch of honey-like sweetness from the base, and just the slightest hint of glace icing to round out the sip. It never really captured the “bread” aspect all that well, and it doesn’t in SBT form, but it’s still pretty delicious.
I sometimes wonder how this one would have been on a Chinese black base, with some delicious bready notes, lots of cinnamon, and a bit more icing. Perfection in a cup? I feel like that’s not true to the spirit of this one, though, so I’m going to enjoy it for what it is. It’s a sad farewell.
Pulled out the second of my green SBTs. In some ways, I’m glad I waited a while before trying them, because I feel like my appreciation of green tea is greater than it used to be. This one got the usual SBT treatment, modified slightly to take into account the green base (cooler water, slightly shorter steep time). I noticed this last time, but they seem to come out almost fluorescent yellow, which is interesting. It’s much brighter than a “normal” green tea colour, but I’ve no idea why. Answers on a postcard.
To taste, I get mostly candy strawberry and just a hint of kiwi. The strawberry is front and centre, the kiwi mostly in the background (and a little more in the aftertaste). It’s super smooth, with no bitterness or astringency from the base. I’m not even sure I’d peg it as a green tea, if I didn’t know. It’s so smooth and delicately sweet that I’d probably think it was just fruit. It’s nice to have the caffeine, though! The strawberry flavour is clear and fruity-juicy, but I’d really like a bit more kiwi. I feel like kiwi isn’t a flavour I see a lot in tea, and yet I can imagine it pairing perfectly with so many things. I feel like the strawberry here would come over a bit less sweet if the kiwi was more prominent, but I like sweet so I’ve no real complaints.
While I know it’s definitely time to drink these up, I’m also sad that they’re disappearing from my cupboard. SBT are a big part of my tea history, and mostly what got me drinking iced tea in the first place. It’s going to be fine, but it’s not going to be the same.
Second SBT of the season! I’m hoping I can get through my remaining sachets this year, because they’ve been sitting around in my cupboard long enough. It’ll be a sad day when they’re finally all gone, though. This is the first SBT I’ve tried with a green base, so I’m interested to see how that works out. I let the water cool to around 170 degrees before adding the bag, and left it for around 2 minutes before diluting it with water for its overnight in the fridge. I didn’t top it up to quite two litres this time, since I felt it might get a bit too washed out, so I stopped at around 1.5.
As it happens, it’s turned out pretty perfect. I was a little worried about the green base (I always am more worried about green teas, for some reason…perhaps because I used to hate them?) but in this case I needn’t have been. It’s smooth and unobtrusive, with no bitterness or astringency, and it works well with the flavouring when it does poke out, so no real complaints.
Fridge cold, the taste is a little muted. It’s deliciously creamy, but I don’t get much in the way of peach. The creaminess has a dairy quality about it, rich and lactic, rather than being the kind of sweet creaminess you’d get from vanilla. I hope that distinction makes sense! It’s as if I’d added actual single cream to the jug, which I haven’t, but hopefully you get the picture!
The peach emerges more as the initial chill wears off. Initially, it’s a slightly under-ripe kind of flavour – muted, and a little flat. As it warms, it becomes a fuller, riper, fruitier peach flavour, but thankfully very natural tasting.
I’m enjoying this one. It strikes a nice balance between peach and cream flavours, and it all sits well on the green base. It sounds like the kind of flavour that could be over-sweet and cloying, but it avoids that and ends up tasting dessert-like but not overdone.
I’m sad this one is no longer with us.
I can’t remember how long these have been in my cupboard, except that it’s probably too long. Definitely years. They’re well sealed, though, so I’m fairly confident they’re going to be okay.
I think I had a pouch of the regular 52Teas version of this, back in the day. My memories of it are a little hazy – it was a long time ago, after all – but I’m pretty sure I enjoyed it. Sure enough that I’m looking forward to this one – it’s the first honeybush SBT I’ve tried, as far as I remember. I’m used to the ones on a black base!
This one got the usual SBT treatment in any case (I’m surprised I still remember!) – 3 minutes in 300ml boiling water, then topped up to 2 litres with cold and into the fridge overnight. It came out a little paler than I was expecting – kind of a light golden orange – but the flavour is pretty solid and that’s all I really wanted.
I mainly get pineapple – sweet, quite juicy, not too OTT or candy-like. It’s not exactly flavour accurate, but close enough. Next comes coconut, and fortunately it hasn’t gone rancid (how I’ll never know!) It’s a nice combination with the pineapple, as you might expect. I feel like I get a hint of rum and a touch of cherry, but they’re fairly fleeting and definitely not the main players. It could just be the power of suggestion brought on by thinking about pina coladas, but I don’t think so.
All in all, I’m pretty pleased with this one. It lives up to its name, and is (unsurprisingly) really refreshing. The honeybush base works well (I’m glad it’s not rooibos!), being really smooth and soft, and adding just a touch of extra sweetness. It makes me kinda sad to think that SBT are no more – these are oldies, but goodies.
This is very good. The SBT teabags are enormous, so I opened the bag and put 1/4 of the tea into a mesh steeper and cold brewed it that way. Lots of lime, some creamy notes. I could use more marshmallow, but this is also an older sample from Starfevre, so it may have lost some of its flavour.
Flavors: Citrus Zest, Lime
Finished off the pitcher of this that I had made by doing some tea cocktail/lemonade type drinks. I don’t feel like rewriting all of the things for each of them so if you want to see a picture and more info on what I did to make each drink just click the photo link and read my little instagram blurb.
They were good; very much like a lightly boozey Arnold Palmer kind of thing with the added bonus of gin. I know when you add Vodka that’s called a ‘John Daly’ but fuck vodka; gin and lemon taste much better together imo. Don’t know what you’d call that though. Best twist was using the activated charcoal lemonade though – they were super cool/pretty looking!
Iced pitcher of tea!
I feel like it’s probably hard to believe that I’m only just now experiencing SBTs for the first time, but back when there were super popular on Steepster I was much, much more interested in the 52Teas side of things and kind of intimidated by the idea of making so much iced tea at once. Plus, I wasn’t really a fan of Frank so when the two companies separated I had no reason to support him…
This was only ok; I mean, props to it for being iced black tea that’s smooth as all hell without ANY astringency but the ‘Citrus Blast’ is a lot more like a ‘Citrus Whisper’ in my opinion. Basically you’re drinking smooth, malty and floral black tea with traces of lemon in the undertones – like the much more mild and subdued older brother of Nestea or Brisk bottled, sweetened ‘iced tea’. It’s fine – we served it up with some sliced starfruit in the glasses and it was refreshing. Just not mind blowing.
After my relative success with Maple Marshmallow, and being slightly leery of pouring boiling water on a large bag of green tea to make a concentrate, I decided to cold brew this one. It got around 10 hours overnight in the fridge, in 2 litres of cold water. Like Maple Marshmallow, the base is just a little more prominent than I’d like it to be. I think that’s my fault for not taking the bag out soon enough, but it takes me a while to get going on a morning, and slightly over-steeped tea (cold or otherwise) is a price I’m usually willing to pay. On the plus side, it’s not bitter or astringent – it’s just really obvious that it’s green tea, and maybe a little too vegetal for the otherwise sweet flavour profile.
I have to say, though, the cotton candy is good. It’s pretty much spot-on in flavour terms, although it doesn’t sit entirely happily with the green base. They’re just two flavours that I don’t think work together all that well. Cotton Candy black is more my thing, and that’s the one I’d repurchase if repurchasing was possible. Sadly, it’s not. I’d be willing to try a Cotton Candy white – that I can see working.
Still. It’s tea, it’s cold, and it’s a hot day. It’s tasty, and that’s good enough for me. There’s not much to say about the flavour, I don’t think, it’s sweet and sugary, as you’d expect, maybe slightly strawberry-ish. It’s good stuff, and I’m sad SBT is no more.
This one is older that I’m just cracking open now. I steeped it hot, as I usually do these iced teas, by taking out a teaspoon of the teabag and saving the rest for later by taping it back up. The CTC base works well with the PLENTY of cola flavor here! The only thing is that I wasn’t tasting any vanilla at all, which is a shame as vanilla cola is my favorite. It’s an older tea though, so this much cola flavor is good enough for me.
Today’s work SBT. Love blueberry, love banana, so this one should be a hit with me. I prepared it the usual way, and I’m pretty pleased with the result. The blueberry is strong, flavour accurate, juicy, fruity…everything you’d want a blueberry tea to be. The banana, though, is surprisingly absent. I say surprising, because usually it’s a flavour 52Teas/SBT do really well. It’s always a candy-like banana, but also always a flavour you can depend on to come over well. Sadly, I can’t taste it at all here.
I’m thinking it might be because the blueberry is so strong (I can’t even really taste much of the black tea base, which is a rarity with SBTs for me). I’m in no way disappointed with the way that comes across. It’s not really blueberry banana tea, though. Just blueberry, which is fine with me, but the name established certain expectations. If it’s only blueberry, just call it blueberry. Nothing wrong with that!
Today’s work SBT, prepared the usual way. I was wondering how well mango would pair with what usually comes across as quite a malty black base, but the answer is pretty well. The mango is strong; fruity, juicy, and peppery in the best way, so the black tea is only really present in the background. I feel like sometimes there’s a bit of a battle between the base and the flavouring with SBTs, but it’s not the case here.
This one is supposed to be mango sherbet, and it’s only at this point that it really falls down. There’s a wonderful creaminess (again, strong), but it’s really not reminiscent of sherbet, at least to me. Mango and cream, though, yes, and that’s more than good enough for me.
I enjoyed this one. Strong, accurate flavours, deliciously fruity and creamy, smooth, unobtrusive base. It makes me sad to think that I haven’t got anymore of this one, and that once it’s gone this time, it really is gone forever. Sad times.
Today’s work SBT, made up as per my usual iced tea/SBT method. This is another of the SBT’s I’ve tried recently that has a favourable flavouring vs. prominence of base ratio. I can tell it’s black tea (and the caffeine is appreciated, obviously), but the flavouring is the main feature and I’m glad of that. Citrus and orange is a no-brainer anyway, but I like that I can taste the individual lemon, orange, and grapefruit elements here. It’s not just one big, generic “citrus” mush. It’s also not too sharp, or too bitter/pithy, and that’s without having added any sugar.
My only complaint with this one is a slight soapy flavour that’s kicking around in the background. It’s ignorable, if i don’t think about it, but once you’ve tasted it it’s hard not to notice it next sip. I didn’t think there was bergamot in this blend, but maybe there is. That’s what it reminds me of most, other than soap, and it’s just a touch jarring for my tastes. Out of place, kinda.
As citrus flavoured black teas go, though, it’s pretty good. Another solid SBT production.
I find it hard to believe no-one’s tried this one! I made this up last night (usual SBT treatment – 3 minutes in 300ml boiling water, topped up to 2 litres with cold and into the fridge), and took it with me to the coast today. The black base is classic 52Teas – soft and kind of “flat” tasting, just a touch on the astringent side. The blackcurrant flavouring is solid, though – strong, juicy, natural tasting. In my head, a black base was a good choice for this one, but in practice it doesn’t quite gel as well as I hoped it would. White would have been better (Blackcurrant Bai Mu Dan, anyone?), but I think at the time this was made SBT were only producing iced tea with a black base. Not so these days, and that’s a good thing!
I enjoyed this one, and I’d drink it again. Maybe a slightly shorter brew time to cut the prominence of the base (and the edge of bitterness) a bit, though.
I made this one up on Saturday, and I drank it with my family over the bank holiday weekend. My mum, naturally, didn’t like it. She’s funny about iced tea anyway, so it wasn’t really a surprise. My dad and I enjoyed it, though – it’s not too sweet, and the chocolate isn’t overpoweringly cloying or sickly. It’s a little artificial tasting, but I can overlook that because it’s not too strong. The mint helps to move it back towards refreshing, adding a clean, cooling taste that’s pretty well suited to the hot days we’ve been having lately. My one complaint is that there’s no “ice cream” element – no creaminess to speak of, anyway – but it’s definitely mint chocolate chip. Ice cream was maybe just a descriptor too far.
This one got the usual SBT treatment (3 minutes in boiling water, topped up to 2 litres with cold, and into the fridge overnight). I don’t have another in my cupboard, but if I did I’d happily drink it again. It’s not my favourite SBT, but it’s pretty solid all the same.
I bought several teas from SBT on their sale and plan to get more if some of my favorite flavors are still in stock. I was trying to one to see if I wanted more or if I should explore other flavors.
I made two steeps and combined them, adding enough water to make a full gallon of tea. Since this is the South and some of my peeps dig it, I added one and a half cups sugar. (This is half the amount my mother added to sweet tea per gallon.) I obeyed the instructions and never let it go beyond the three minute mark.
It is quite good, but it doesn’t taste like Mountain Dew to me. It is instead a nicely flavored black tea that is very refreshing, with hints of lime and lemon. The base is fantastic, as always.
My favorites are still Razzleberry and Earl Grey Iced, with Pink Lemonade Iced Tea coming in as a solid flavored tea to keep on hand that everyone likes. I wouldn’t mind having lots of this, but it doesn’t make fireworks for me. Great stuff, but not making me drool. The favorite two bring a tear to my eye…
So I’ll admit straight off that I fully didn’t expect this one to work. I mean, there’s so much going on in the name, how could it? I was actually kind of wrong, in the best possible way. This one got the usual SBT treatment (3 minutes in 1/4 litre of boiling water, topped up to 2 litres with cold and into the fridge overnight). The initial flavour is pumpkin pie, with both the spices and a buttery pie crust note present and correct. The mid-sip contributes some chocolate, and it’s odd how well it resembles the chocolate sauce you can buy specifically for ice cream, kind of semi-artificial but wonderfully right when contrasted with cold, sweet ice cream. Vanilla ice cream, specifically, and that’s what I get right at the end of the sip – delicate vanilla notes, which contribute a smooth creaminess and somehow bring everything together. I don’t think I got crepe, but I can forgive that because it’s so spot-on otherwise.
Did I just drink pumpkin pie with vanilla ice cream and chocolate sauce?
Yes I did.
Today’s work iced tea. I prepared it the usual way, giving the bag 3 minutes in 1/4 litre of boiling water, topped up to 2 litres with cold and into the fridge overnight. I love anything candy cane related, so I was pretty excited to try this one! While it was brewing, I could really smell vanilla and mint, and the tiny taste I took was pretty good. A little artificial in the way of peppermint extract, maybe, but good. This morning I’m wondering whether it’s too cold, because I can’t really taste much of anything at all. There’s a very faint mint flavour, and it’s lightly sweet/creamy, but that’s really all. If anything, the bulk of the flavour seems to be in the aftertaste, but that’s not saying much because there’s not much flavour to be found.
I’d probably say that I’d stored this one too long if I hadn’t taken a tiny sip last night and found plenty of flavour. I’m going to let it warm up a little in case that improves things, but otherwise I’m at a loss to know what happened with this one. It was candy cane, and now it’s no more than just barely. Hmm.
ETA: It’s a little improved as it gets warmer, but not as much as I’d hoped. I’m going to give this one a rating of 60, because it tasted okay last night, and it still does except that it’s significantly fainter than I recall.
Today’s work iced tea. I made this up the way I usually do, giving the bag 3 minutes in 1/4 litre of boiling water, topped up to 2 litres with cold and then into the fridge overnight. While it was in the hot water, my family insisted the smell was caramel. At first that confused me, but I can kind of see it, I guess…it’s sweet, and there’s something that reminds me very much of vanilla beans. Not caramel, though, really.
When I took my first sip, I was immediately reminded of Della Terra’s Lemon Chiffon. This has the same creamy, dessert-like vibe. I can taste both lemon and lime pretty clearly, although the creaminess is dominant. I don’t have a problem with that, though – it’s delicious! The thing that most astounds me about SBTs is their ability to mimic the effervescence of a fizzy drink, or something like sherbet, without actually being carbonated, and there is a background fizziness here.Ultimately, it comes across as a hybrid of Mountain Dew and Cream Soda for me, which is better tasting than it sounds. I’m certainly going to find this one easy to drink today – it could be a new favourite SBT!
Today’s iced tea. I know I need to work on drinking down my SBT stash, and this is the beginning of that. To aid in this endeavor, I’ve pulled out my oldest ones so they’re first to hand (although I don’t think they’re actually THAT old, really).
This one got the usual SBT treatment – 3 minutes in 1/4 litre of boiling water, topped up to 2 litres with cold water and into the fridge for around 12 hours overnight. I wasn’t at all convinced by the scent of this one while it was brewing – it had a very strong, very sweet “throat sweet” honey scent.
To taste, it’s actually pretty good. Ginger isn’t my favourite thing, and so I’m pleased to find that it’s not super strong or particularly peppery. It actually reminds me most of crystallized ginger – there’s a mild spicy kick, but with an edge of sweetness. It’s mostly a background flavour. The main flavour is honey, but again it’s not too strong or overpowering. It’s pretty flavour accurate, and adds almost a syrupy texture to the mouthfeel – very smooth and sweet. It works better with the ginger than I thought it would – one seems to bring out the best in the other.
As SBTs go, I’m finding this a pretty subtle blend, but on a hot day that’s actually no bad thing. The flavours are definitely there – there’s no argument about this one being honey-ginger – but they’re not too in-your-face and I’m quite enjoying that today. It’s a thirst-quenching, easy-sipping delight of a tea.