8 Tasting Notes
It’s hard not to get caught up in the latest health-conscious fad when you live in Vancouver, and this time, kombucha beckoned.
Like many others, I found the taste of unflavoured kombucha to be disagreeable (read: cat piss). To my relief, the Yogi tea bags far surpassed my expectations, as they tasted mild and sweet with a hint of tangy, minty kombucha goodness.
Bonus: The steeping process was painless and hassle-free, as it is nearly impossible to oversteep this.
They’ve now become one of my staple bagged teas, and I’m now on my second box.
Flavors: Lemongrass, Mint
My first sipdown! Got a 10-pack of this back in May along with a black-green blend…unfortunately this is rather disappointing.
A couple of minutes of brewing results in a nice deep colour, but an utterly bland taste. I suppose Mrs. Grey must be the older spinster sister of Lady Grey, because this tea is flat and bland and reminds me of a stuffy attic.
Anyhow, glad this is off my shelf. Time to invest in more Irish Breakfasts!
My cupboard is dominated by tins of black, green, and white, so I can be rather close-minded when it comes to herbal teas. So I was pleasantly surprised when a couple of friends presented me with a can of David’s Pineapple Daiquiri, containing Hot Tropic and Redberry Tonic for my birthday. I decided to forgo the instructions to mix the two together, and brewed the latter by itself.
Imagine my apprehension when after 5 minutes of steeping, the result was a deep shade of fuchsia that looked and smelled like prune juice. However, the taste was pleasantly tangy, without overbearing herbal notes. Given the weather, this will probably go down easier iced.
Bottom line: Herbal is still uncharted territories for me, and it may take awhile for me to become accustomed to the taste.
Flavors: Berries, Fruit Punch, Lemongrass
First question for myself: Why drink tea when it is 30 degrees Celsius out?
Answer: Harney and Sons.
This particular tea has been sitting on my wish list for a tad too long. So following an afternoon at the office, I braved an arduous bus trip (who am I kidding, I’ve survived 10-hour Greyhound trips) to East Vancouver to pick up this baby, along with a second box of Clippers White Raspberry.
Classy box aside, this is positively the most deliciously-scented tea I’ve had the fortune to come across. I followed the instructions on the box and steeped for 5 minutes (well, 7 to be exact), and the result was delicate but flavourful. Another 5 minutes of steeping and I had myself a strong black brew. DO NOT OVERSTEEP!
Given the steep price (slow clap) of the box, silk sachets and all, I’ll probably save this for special occasions and stick to Twinings for the daily cuppa.
Flavors: Floral, Fruity
I distinctly recall last May as being rainy and dreary – in other words, no different from the winter months.
So when we were blessed with a spell of warm weather, I rushed to Granville Island between work and evening lectures to sample a new Earl Grey, of which I had become addicted to.
It took me awhile to find the small but well-stocked Granville Island Tea Company in the public market. When I asked for Earl Greys, the sales girl expertly pulled several tins from the shelves, which was no easy feat, seeing as there were several hundred black tins lining the walls.
I had a hard time choosing between the Cream Earl Grey and the aptly-named Dorian Grey (cue lit student squeals), but the sweet, creamy scent of the former won me over. The resulting brew was lighter on bergamot than standard Earl Greys, but intoxicatingly flavoured with vanilla. The taste was smooth, velvety, and utterly soothing. Definitely going back for seconds when my 100g runs out.
Being the enduring brand for Earl Greys, this is a must-try product for me during my transition from green to black tea.
I was lucky enough to snatch up two boxes from Shoppers for $3 apiece (bargain!) Strangely enough, Canadian shelves only carry the Earl Grey, Lady Grey and Chamomile from Twinings.
A delicious citrus scent met me when I tore open the package – a subject of much online griping after Twinings changed their formula. 3-4 minutes of steeping yielded a slightly murky shade, still with that overpowering citrus scent. I had a plain cup, and made my mom a cup with copious amounts of milk. One sip brought me back to the European tea salons (okay, they really do know their tea better across the pond). This is definitely one of the better bagged teas out there.
This will probably become my go-to Earl Grey, but I’m also itching to see what Harney and Sons has to offer.
Flavors: Lemon Zest