68
drank Carrot Cake by T2
316 tasting notes

Oookay, this one is SOCLOSE to being SOGOOD. It’s got a surprisingly rich and heavy mouthfeel, with loads of spicy-sweet-bready-cakey goodness. I definitely understand the carrot cake inspiration in the sense that carrot cake is often kind of dense and nutty and sweet, and those are the vibes I’m getting here. It’s definitely a dessert tea — there’s sugar in the pineapple bits and the hazelnut brittle, but I think the sweetness works to balance out the strong notes of cinnamon and clove (?) and to evoke sweet icing. I rarely purchase or drink tea with added sugar, but it makes sense here, I think.

Unfortunately, the whole effect is diminished by a burst of surprising tartness, probably from the orange slices and/or orange essence (and maaaybe the pineapple bits, but I doubt it because they’re sweetened). Don’t get me wrong; orange zest/juice in carrot cake is lovely and really complements the earthiness of carrots, but here it’s just far too strong! “Tart” should not be a main descriptor of carrot cake, IMHO.

On the plus side, the second steep is far less tart, so that’s something. And I think you could pick the orange slices out of the blend pretty easily. But still, it’s unfortunate.

Flavors: Bread, Cake, Cinnamon, Clove, Orange, Orange Zest, Roast Nuts, Sweet, Tart

gmathis

Don’t think I’ve ever seen a (real) carrot cake with orange anything in it…wonder if that’s just a regional flavor variation that’s common outside my part of the world.

ashmanra

I haven’t either. Some people put (shudder) raisins in.

Kelmishka

Oh, interesting! Maybe it is regional.
Raisins are the devil and putting them in cake is just cruel!

Leafhopper

I couldn’t agree more about raisins, and also about oranges in carrot cake!

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gmathis

Don’t think I’ve ever seen a (real) carrot cake with orange anything in it…wonder if that’s just a regional flavor variation that’s common outside my part of the world.

ashmanra

I haven’t either. Some people put (shudder) raisins in.

Kelmishka

Oh, interesting! Maybe it is regional.
Raisins are the devil and putting them in cake is just cruel!

Leafhopper

I couldn’t agree more about raisins, and also about oranges in carrot cake!

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Bio

I was an anxious child who didn’t like change, so when my parents flew across the country for my grandfather’s wedding and left us kids with my aunt and uncle, I was a nervous wreck. Our first night at their house was tough. I couldn’t sleep, so I got up and padded into the kitchen, where my aunt was puttering around. She could tell I was distressed and offered to make me a cup of tea. It was just Celestial Seasonings’ peppermint tea, but it was exactly what I needed. The tea itself, the comfort it represented, the ritual of making it… I was enchanted. I’ve loved tea ever since.

I’m partial to strong, intense flavors and prefer loose-leaf to bagged, but I also appreciate the convenience of bags and sachets. I mostly drink my tea straight but once in a blue moon I’ll add a little plant-based milk, generally oat.

I live in Maryland, USA, with my partner, three dogs, and one cat, and I’m an editor at an animal welfare nonprofit. I use she/her pronouns. I’ve actually been a Steepster reader for years and years, but only started posting in late 2021. :)

When I’m not drinking tea (or sometimes WHILE I’m drinking tea!) I’m reading, rewatching comfort shows on Netflix, going for a run, knitting, embroidering, hiking, or puttering in the garden. You can find me on Instagram at @kelmishka. (My account is private, but feel free to send a request!)

Favorite ingredients, flavors, etc.

Maple (all-time fave flavor!), vanilla, caramel, and all things dessert-y

Jasmine, lavender, violet, and most floral flavors

Most spices, although I go through phases and sometimes get bored of generic-feeling winter spice blends

Most fruity flavors

Matcha and other vegetal flavors

Not-so-favorite ingredients, flavors, etc.

Bergamot (I tolerate it, but it just doesn’t do it for me)

Hibiscus

Overly artificial flavors (banana, coconut, mango)

Overly herbacious blends, although this varies!

Stevia, monkfruit, and other sugar-alternative sweeteners — blech

Chocolate — it’s hard to get it right in tea, though I love real chocolate!

Animal products, including honey (long-time vegan checking in!)

My ratings

90-100: The best! Will almost definitely repurchase.

75-90: Really good, and potentially worthy of a restock.

60-75: Decent, if not terribly memorable.

50-60: In the “meh” range, but possibly for personal taste reasons.

35-50: I’m not a fan, and this is not very good tea.

20-35: Varying degrees of bad.

1-20: Actively bad. Like really bad. I can’t imagine anyone disagreeing.

Location

Maryland, USA

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