May Flowers! This is one of my oldest samplers, so it’s time I finally tend to it (at least there is no coconut in it, so dodged a bullet there!) This is a guayusa tea blended with jasmine green tea (I admittedly can’t stand a plain, heavily-scented jasmine tea, but have found I’m usually fine when it’s blended with other things so it’s more subtle), and it also has some hibiscus petals as well as some strawberry (since my sampler was before they changed the formula to raspberry) and rosehip to add some other fruity notes.
Brewed up warm, this tea has a very odd aroma… I’m getting a somewhat tobacco smoky but somewhat earthy scent from the guayusa, but it is mixed with a very sweet floral aroma. Honestly, I don’t think the two really pair all that well, and after tasting the tea, I feel about the same. The flavor of the guayusa is a bit dominating and that smoky flavor sticks out a bit rather than really mixing well with the floral jasmine and soft, underlying fruity notes. It feels a little off. I think if it was a little more subdued it would be better, or maybe if the tea was somehow a little more naturally sweet, somehow the profile would work better. Since I still have quite a bit of the sampler left, I do plan to play around with brew amounts, water temperature, and steep time, and see if I can’t get a more favorable tasting cup out of this. I feel there may be potential, but for now I’m not impressed.
The batch of iced tea I made is a bit more pleasant; the guayusa is still a little stronger than I’d prefer, but much more subdued overall than my warm cup, with far more of the sweeter strawberry and floral jasmine notes coming through. Since my iced tea batch was prepared by cold steeping overnight, this definitely makes me think that experimenting with colder water temperatures and shorter steep times than what Art of Tea recommends may be the secret to a tastier warm cup. But if all else fails, I definitely can sip this down making iced tea!
Flavors: Berry, Earth, Floral, Hay, Smoke