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Recent Tasting Notes
One of my friends and I are always looking for what we consider a “wow” tea. A wow tea is one of those teas that you drink and you are just overall mind blown at how delicious it is. We have definitely found a “wow” tea here with this one.
The way the flavors all come together harmoniously is outstanding. I have always had this tea, as is. It isn’t bitter and has a nice blend of sweet and tangy.
I highly recommend this tea and have even had some friends try a cup of it. I have yet to hear anyone have a single negative comment about it. I really do not think you will go wrong with this one.
Flavors: Fruity, Lime, Sweat, Tangy
Trick or Treat! I got this tea from Par Avion Tea, but they wholesale and repackage blends from Tea Guys. Unlike some of my other Par Avion Teas, the name of this blend hasn’t since changed by Tea Guys, nor has the ingredients been updated, other than the inclusion of the preservatives sea salt and citric acid in the listing on Tea Guys website, which isn’t on my Par Avion Tea tin (though to be fair, I bet it is in there and just not listed… * cough cough * )
In any event, this tea just smells of candied ginger. And steeped… it just tastes of candied ginger, too. Where in the world is the chocolate? It lists roasted cocoa beans, dark chocolate chips, and dark cocoa powder in the ingredients, and there isn’t so much as a hint of chocolate anywhere in the flavor. None! Just a really, really sweet gingery taste (not spicy at all), like those sugary ginger candies. The flavor actually reminds me exactly of their Ginger Darjeeling Peach tea, minus the peach flavor. It’s rather bland, without any of the other flavor notes that should be in the tea coming through.
So I actually pulled out some of my leftover cocoa shells from the Simpson & Vail sampler to see if I could… I don’t know… force some chocolate flavor into this to try to make it taste how it should? That certainly helped a bit, but I still wasn’t getting strong chocolately notes, and I added half a gram of cocoa shells, so it seems to me the candied ginger is just so strong it simply overwhelms whatever they were trying to go for with a chocolately-ginger tea.
Yaaaa… I think I’ll use this one up the same way I used up the Ginger Darjeeling Peach, by cold-steeping it in lemonade, which left the lemonade with the candied ginger flavor and at least gave me some tasty lemonade, if nothing else.
Flavors: Astringent, Candy, Ginger, Sweet
It’s late, I’m past my caffeine cut-off for the evening, and I’m feeling like something warm and sweet, so I think I’ll drink a cup of this. This is another Par Avion Tea that I was given as a gift last Christmas, and as I discovered with a little Nancy Drewing, all their teas are sourced from Tea Guys. This blend is Tea Guy’s Chocolate Mint Rooibos blend, which they have since renamed “Peppermint Chocolate Vanilla” and updated the blend slightly. The main differences to the blend are, other than all the preservatives they now put in all their teas (sea salt, citric acid), they now include cocoa powder and the yogurt has been swapped for vanilla. I have the original non-preservative-filled Chocolate Mint Rooibos version of the blend.
I love the scent of this tea, it smells like hard toffee candies wafting out of the cup to me. This is a very nice chocolate mint rooibos, the flavor is quite rich; you don’t really taste any of the rooibos base, and while I’m fine with rooibos, I think that’s a good thing in this case, because I tried a different chocolate mint rooibos in the past, Velvet Tea by Art of Tea, and the rooibos flavor was much more prevalent in that blend while the chocolate was more subtle, and it just didn’t really work for me with this particular flavor combo. This tea has a nice chocolate note that actually has this sort of creamy, caramel/toffee sort of note to it that is very pleasant. The mint comes out right at the finish of the sip and cools on the tongue, but it isn’t overbearing as peppermint can tend to be in these sort of teas.
This is a really nice dessert blend that really hits that sweet spot before bed.
Flavors: Caramel, Chocolate, Creamy, Mint, Sweet, Toffee
My iced tea today is “Cucumber Mojito” by Par Avion Teas, which sources and repackages tea blends from Tea Guys. This particular Tea Guys blend has been updated to “Cucumber Mint Mojito” and has slightly changed in its current form — Tea Guys now has tons of preservatives in their teas (sea salt, malic and citric acids) but besides that, the new version has removed the jasmine petals and added way more lemon (lemon peel and lemon juice). I still have the original Cucumber Mojito blend ingredients, which had the jasmine petals and only had lemon myrtle but was lacking the lemon peel and juice.
Since this green tea blend is meant to mimic a cocktail, I cold steeped it and am enjoying it iced. “Cucumber” is a bit misleading though, so I can see why the new incarnation was renamed “Cucumber Mint”, because the first flavor I’m assaulted with is a very strong minty flavor. In fact, when I emptied the next quart mason jar in my fridge into my water bottle and took a swig, I couldn’t even remember what I had made. I could tell it was a green base from the color and mouthfeel, but couldn’t remember making a minty green tea. I’d already finished my Moroccan Mint and knew I hadn’t made that tea again. It took a while before it clicked that I had made this tea. It smells quite sweet (almost makes me think of mint chocolate, though nothing about the taste is chocolately), and I suppose the flavor has a somewhat sweet finish. There is a lime note to the tea, but it is more subtle and a bit more subdued beneath the strong peppermint note of the tea. I’m not getting any cucumber, or any floral notes from the jasmine petals.
It’s a refreshing iced tea, but honestly doesn’t really taste all that different from a Moroccan Mint to me, other than having a slight lime note added. It’s a bit underwhelming overall.
Flavors: Lime, Mint, Peppermint, Sweet
A Berry Frui-tea July! New month, new theme, and since it’s the hot summer months, I’ve decided to feature fruit-flavored teas out of my collection, since they tend to make nice iced teas. And I drink a lot of iced tea during the hot summer months!
I received this tea as a gift from my bestie Todd last Christmas. It came in a tin from Par Avion Teas, but a little Nancy Drewing has led me to discover that all their blends are wholesaled and repackaged blends from Tea Guys. Ergo, I’m posting this under the source rather than creating a listing under Par Avion Teas, because that’s just how I choose to roll. This tea is still the original Ginger Darjeeling Peach name and blend ingredients.
I actually did try a warm cuppa of this tea with my breakfast this morning, steeping a teaspoon in 200 F water for four minutes. The steeped tea is a very orangey color, and has a strong sweet gingery smell, but there is something slightly metallic about the aroma as well that is slightly off and makes me a little worried about the taste… Thankfully it doesn’t have a metallic taste, but I wouldn’t say I’m crazy about the flavor, either. There is a really nice candied ginger top note with this somewhat sweet cinnamon-tasting aftertaste that is very pleasant, but the peach flavor is a little subtle… I notice it faintly, but somehow it feels a little… watery, or subdued. The black tea base itself also just feels… weak, somehow. I do like that it isn’t extremely harsh and bitter and overpowers all the flavor of the tea, but at the same time, I just wish it felt a bit more substantial. Something just feels a little off about all of this. I wonder if I have to use double-leaf to get a decent tasting cup? But if I have to use extra leaf, then there is already something a bit off. Meh.
It tastes all right, just a bit lackluster, like the flavors should all be a little more fuller than they are. Except for the ginger element, which feels just right, as I don’t like ginger to be too overwhelming. But the base and the peach just feel like they need a bit more “oomph” in the warm cuppa to pull it all together. Then this could really be something nice!
I also made a quart of this iced, cold-steeping six teaspoons in lemonade. I normally never cold steep black tea, as I feel it just won’t release a strong enough flavor, but eh… I was curious (and I added a little extra leaf-to-water as a result). After my hot cuppa felt so meh on flavor, now I’m especially worried that there is going to be no flavor pulling through against this lemonade… ah well, moment of truth time!
Oddly enough, I’m surprised how well the tea works this way! There is something about the lemon that actually brings out the peach notes in a way that I just wasn’t getting from the tea before, and the citrus and peach blend really well together. The ginger still doesn’t come off too strongly, but has that sweet candied ginger/slightly cinnamon taste that hits at the end of the sip, and it also accompanies the lemonade really nicely. I’m not really getting any of the base black tea, but then, I felt the black tea was a little weak on its own anyway, so I’m happy enough that the peach is at least more flavorful, and the gingered peach does taste nice in the lemonade. Since the tea was kinda meh on its own, I may just use it up over the summer this way instead.
Flavors: Candy, Cinnamon, Ginger, Peach, Sweet
I hated this tea. I absolutely love juniper, like coriander, and I tolerate lemon fine. But I hated this tea. Even the smell made me sick. I couldn’t try it more than once. Sickly sweet lemon peel/oil was way too prevalent. coriander made it a little chai like which didn’t go. $8 down the drain.
OK, I don’t know what’s up with my bag, but I swear it tasted like coffee with a faint hint of chocolate. 3/3 of my family thought it was coffee, not tea. My daughter thought that was great, as a mochaccino (sp?) lover. However, I loathe coffee so off it goes.
Flavors: Coffee, Espresso
I don’t find this to be tremendously grapefruity, but the flavor is definitely present. It’s more the actual fruit than peel or oil or anything, and it’s balanced nicely with the tea. I have yet to find a grapefruit tea that I love, but this is a nice one. (I do find this needs a bit more tea than average, although probably not as much as I used here for most people – I tend to go heavy on the tea.)
Here’s Hoping TTB
I had a cup of this with breakfast this morning. Unfortunately, I was running late for work, so I had to gulp it down and wasn’t able to notice much. Mostly apple flavor, not much fig, and quite astringent. I didn’t love it, but not going to rate since I didn’t really give it a fair trial.
My non tea drinking husband liked this one, that says a lot. I am a maple lover, I lived in Vermont for 7 years and even though maple wasn’t like a huge part of my existence there, it’s special to me as a symbol of that time. So I tried this without high hopes and IT’S SO GOOD!!! I love that I can still taste the black tea base but there is totally a mapley warm sweet flavor to this! I imagine this as a latte made with vanilla almond milk and with some sugar on a cold rainy Sunday. Daydreaming…
I drank this one at the movie theater over the weekend watching Beauty and the Beast :) The thing I like about Tea Guys, well there are a lot of things, but one of the main things is that you can still taste the tea. It isn’t so dense with artificial flavors that you don’t know you’re drinking tea, you can even tell what kind of tea is in the base. This one…I got the chocolate flavor and I got a hint of the nuttiness but I didn’t quite get the toffee. I think toffee is a hard flavor to capture without sweetness so maybe if I added sugar I would get it. I did like this though, and I have some more so I will try with a tiny bit of sugar next time.
Flavors: Chocolate, Nutty, Tea
Relatively weak, steep 1 pyramid bag at boiling for 6m30s. Uninspiring and didn’t really stand up to milk either. What flavor there was was promising, but with one bag in 12oz of water at over six minutes I would have expected to be able to discern more than nutmeg and a bit of maple. Purchased as a single bag in plastic, may have been old/stale.
Flavors: Cinnamon, Maple, Nutmeg, Rooibos
Here’s Hoping Teabox – Round Six – Tea #26
Upon sipping this, I’m pretty sure this is the same blend as Angry Tea Room’s Maple tea. The pink peppercorn, cocoa nibs, and the maple is a giveaway. But I like this blend! I love seeing all the vanilla bean pieces around the rim of the mug. YUM. More teas need vanilla residue. If this one had more spices, it could almost taste like eggnog. The cocoa nibs don’t make the tea too chocolatey. The peppercorn was actually noticeable the second steep. Two lovely steeps. Points for vanilla that isn’t even in the name!
Here’s Hoping Teabox – Round Six – Tea #14
I think a few tea companies have this blend and it’s a good one! There are so many ingredients in this one (including caramel pieces!) It’s a tasty blend that really goes for that pumpkin spice flavor while being unique on a roasted yerba mate base. Good stuff! A nice combination of goodies.
Here’s Hoping Teabox – Round Six – Tea #2
This is the tea I’ve wanted to try for years, so I was happy to see it in the teabox. Sadly, it didn’t turn out anything like I thought or what the description mentioned. It’s hard to describe! The rooibos wasn’t really necessary along with the black tea, though I remember saying years ago I’d like to see more black/rooibos combinations, I don’t really see the point now. Haha. I would love a nice woodsy (maybe that is the point of the rooibos? Literal woodsy?) apple and fig tea, so maybe this one would be better to try fresher.
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 teaspoons for a full mug// 14 minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 4 minute steep
Aroma: Divine. Strong chocolate & refreshing mint.
Flavour: MINT! mint in the foretaste, mint in the aftertaste, mint, mint, mint. Followed by creamy chocolate notes, which contains just a hint of honeyed rooibos.
Final Thoughts: Complete love this blend! If I had to list my top 10 this would definitely be in it.
For more on this: https://www.tastethetea.co.uk/2016/10/11/chocmintroo/
Flavors: Chocolate, Creamy, Honey, Mint, Rooibos, Vanilla
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While not the most unique white tea I’ve ever had, it doesn’t change the fact that this tea is delicious and perfect for drinking right before bedtime. It has a beautiful delicate taste that all white teas should have and a gorgeous gentle scent. I was able to re-steep this tea 3 times without the flavor differing even in the slightest.