steep by Bigelow

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Recent Tasting Notes

70

So This is an old free tea sample I got in the mail about 2 years ago. I found it in a moving box recently along with a Breakfast Black tea. I don’t have much to say since I gulped this cup down rather quickly. Just let it be noted that this was really good, the best bagged green I’ve ever had. It wasn’t nearly as vegetal as most bagged green teas. Unfortunately I’ve never seen this sold in stores near me otherwise I might consider grabbing a box.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 15 sec

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10

Bitter green with medicinal cherry. Bleh.

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70

I don’t drink a lot of bagged teas these days but I saw a box of these English Breakfast tea bags during a visit to the break room at my wife’s office. I was curious about this new Steep By Bigelow tea line and “borrowed” one tea bag. This line appeared to be an upscale version of Bigelow’s standard tea bags. The label specified that the tea within was organic and Fair Trade Certified. Bigelow seems to be in an expansion mode lately as they also recently acquired South Carolina’s Charleston tea plantation and tea company. At one time, Charleston had the only remaining tea plantation in the country.

To prepare this tea, I microwaved a glass mug of filtered water for three minutes until boiling. I then instructed Alexa (of my Amazon Echo) to set a four-minute timer.

The brewed color was golden orange. The aroma was faint and like malty black tea.

The flavor was actually quite robust. It tasted malty like the aroma indicated. The tea flavor was full and easily identifiable as Ceylon. My first few sips contained just a tweak of bitterness. The liquor also seemed to briefly coat my tongue and mouth with some sort of milky texture. That twist was unexpected and strange but quickly disappeared with the bitter attribute after a few more sips. The aftertaste was light and posed no problems.

Although I wouldn’t pay more for this item than I would for the standard Bigelow English Breakfast tea bags, this was a decent blend that was perhaps a tad more flavor-fortified than their standard offering. I would have no problem drinking this tea in an office situation if I didn’t have access to my infuser.

Flavors: Malt, Tea

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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67

I “borrowed” a tea bag of this selection from my wife’s office breakroom. I mainly wanted to see how this apparently deluxe version of Bigelow’s Earl Grey compared to their standard Earl Grey product. The Bigelow Steep line of teas all seem to be labeled “organic.” Some are also labeled “Fair Trade Certified” (but not this one).

When I tore open the bag’s wrapper, I could smell the bergamot. The aroma was potent and easily recognizable.

I boiled a cup of filtered water for three minutes in my “nuker.” I then steeped (no pun intended in this instance) the bag for four minutes to comply with the wrapper’s preparation instructions.

The finished color was a dark amber. There was very little aroma (bergamot or otherwise) to speak of, even with my nose pushed into the cup.

The flavor of this tea was medium-strength. The taste was mildly bergamot with Ceylon attributes quietly tip-toeing in the shadows behind it. As with another Bigelow Steep selection that I tried, this one also seemed to coat my tongue and mouth with a strange milk-like texture that remained during the first few sips. There also was a slight astringency present but not enough to complain about. The aftertaste was inoffensive.

Personally, I prefer a more robust and natural bergamot flavor in Earl Grey blends. Perhaps this is just an advantage of the loose-leaf teas that I drink 99.9999% of the time.

I initially stated that I wanted to see how this assumed higher end version of Bigelow’s Earl Grey compared with its standard product. On Amazon, a package of six boxes containing 20 bags each of the Bigelow Steep Earl Grey currently costs about $9 more than an equal package of their standard brand. Having experienced both products, I would not feel like I was missing anything by choosing the standard offering.

Flavors: Bergamot, Tea

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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71

I can’t remember where this teabag came from, but I thought a no caffeine day was the right time to drink it.

Toasty, notes of squash, bok choy, vegetal, but not as vegetal and grassy as most bagged greens. The toasted flavour is really nice. It reminds me a lot of a genmaicha, but this is straight. As far as bagged greens go, this is the best I’ve had.

Flavors: Butternut Squash, Rice, Toasted, Vegetal

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 4 min, 30 sec 20 OZ / 580 ML

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65

This Organic Earl Grey, from Bigelow’s Steep, is a workhorse Earl Grey. It does not delight, it does not astonish but it does, on very unpretentious terms, soothe. This modest goal, seemingly humble, is beyond the talents of most mainstream tea makers, and that Steep by Bigelow has achieved this inoffensive Earl Grey is commendable indeed.
Instead of the usual grim suspicions that yet another big tea maker has packeted and sold bags of twigs under the euphemistic advertisement of “tea,” this drink rests all fears due to its placid black tea blend which is accompanied by notes of lightly skimming bergamot.
This tea is best served on late afternoons when fuss and fanciness would only further irritate the soul.

Flavors: Bergamot

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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84

The tea bag smells strongly of spicy ginger, but the steeped liquid is balanced between ginger and lemon. I like that it is very flavourful and spicy.

Flavors: Citrus, Ginger, Herbs, Lemon, Lime, Spicy

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec 14 OZ / 400 ML

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Preparation
Boiling 8 OZ / 236 ML

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