Honey. Clover. (Maybe clover honey?) As it steeps, I’m getting something that reminds me of skiing in Steamboat Springs, CO. It’s mouthwatering…

1st steeping (4 min, boiling water): Honey. Slightly creamy. Now I’m getting a wave of cocoa—this IS like chocolate milk! Also, the clover is coming through. Still gives me the taste of skiing in Steamboat, and because that’s kind of confusing, I’ll explain: Every year around spring break, my family and another family that we’re all best friends with (the family we choose) go skiing in Steamboat, CO. Every year except for one we get completely dumped on with an out-of-the-blue late-season blizzard, and we get to ski in 3 foot deep powder to our hearts’ content. Pretty lucky. There’s this sunscreen/anti-windburn stick we always put on our faces when we’re out there, and the smell of it—whatever essential oils are in it—takes me back to bright shiny morning, riding up the gondola, wrapped up in base layers, coats, mittens, pants, gaiters, helmets, goggles, clipping into bindings and launching off into another adventure that gives meaning to life. It’s one of the sweetest memories I have.

Now does that make sense?

2nd steeping (4 min 45 sec, boiling water): Something I forgot to mention in the first steeping—the cocoa taste reminds me of the chocolate milk I would get at a diner I went to on some special mornings with my mom when I was little. I never got chocolate milk pre-made anywhere else (I claimed it tasted like cardboard), but I got it here and it was delicious.
Anyway, back to our regularly scheduled programming. Same mouthwatering aroma while it’s steeping…I’m probably going to use my coupon to get more of this…upon sipping, the cocoa taste is predominant, still with the delicious clover honey note, and wow, this is fantastic.

3rd steeping (~6 min, boiling water): The cocoa has receded a little and the clover honey’s coming back. Mmmm. This is a more subtle sweetness. I’m getting a bit of tingly cinnamon warmth on the back of my tongue, too.

4th steeping (~8 min, boiling water): Put this in my travel mug. Prior steepings have used up much of the flavor, but it retains the slightest hint of cocoa. It’s comforting nevertheless.

Overall: Sweet mercy, this is amazing. I love black tea, and this is one of the most comforting, tasty, unique ones I’ve ever tried. This has made it into my hall of fame—I’m going to always have some of this on hand.

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I’m a college tea drinker.
I cook feverishly.
I draw.
I make movies.
I knit.
Someday I wish to own chickens.

I love tea because of the complete sensory experience it offers me. Clock time fades away as I lean into my cup, watching the delicate cascades of steam waft up from the brew. Peace. Stillness. Feeling centered. It’s my meditation…

To give you a little background on my tea preferences (which will put my ratings into perspective)…

I love teas that are strong without bitterness and have earthy flavors to them, like rooibos or a really good black tea. (A few favorites in this category: Toffee Almond Supreme, Popped Rooibos, Oh Canada, Nutcracker Sweet.) Vanilla, cinnamon, and nutty are some of my favorite flavor notes. After about a year of warming up to greens, I absolutely love them—from the sweet, nutty, green-tea-ice-cream-like to the bold, grassy earthiness of Gunpowder Temple of Heaven. I also enjoy a nice white every once in a while. Fruity teas aren’t my favorite. I do have a few fruity teas that I love though, like TeaSource’s Green Tea with Pomegranate, Lemon Solstice, and Blueberry Fields.

I drink all of my teas unsweetened; if a tea needs sweetening, I usually don’t like it. A couple of notable exceptions: I sometimes sweeten straight green teas and matcha, and I drink my chai with soymilk (but no other sweetener). I sometimes like my black tea with a little dollop of soymilk.


Northfield, MN

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