Chai to Stay Dry! This is another tea that I picked up from Snake River Tea in Boise, and I remember being pretty taken by it from their sampler pot when I visited their shop last May (I’ll be making my yearly trip next month, and am already getting pretty excited, though with a much fuller tea cupboard this year, I probably won’t be picking up near so much!) A quick bit of searching and I’ve found this particular blend was sourced from Adagio Teas.
I’m… not exactly sure what I saw in this tea when I tasted the teaser, because it certainly doesn’t hold up for me now. The first major problem I have with this tea is it is heralded as a white tea chai, but the actual leaf has hardly any actual white tea leaf in it; it looks like a near replica of my Lemon Spice tisane by Strand Tea that can be found in my Tasting Notes. And honestly… it’s a pretty close taste match, too. The main differences, as far as flavor, is that this tea is a little stronger on the fruit notes and is therefore a little sweeter, and isn’t quite as spicy as Strand Tea’s Lemon Spice. The lemongrass forms the base of the tea, so it has a strong lemon flavor, and there are some very noticable pine notes to the blend, which paired with the heavy lemon just give it a very… Lemon Pledge sort of taste. It isn’t undrinkable, but it isn’t exactly a pleasant association, either… and if it weren’t for that, I actually do like the way the citrus and spices of the blend work together. I get notes of ginger, cinnamon, and peppercorn, and the fruit in the blend lends enough sweetness to compliment the spices and really bring out their flavor. It actually packs a pretty decent heat for a non-traditional chai. I just wish it actually had more white tea and didn’t taste so strongly of Pine-Sol. It’s that pine note that kind of ruins it, and I’m not exactly sure where it is coming from. If it’s actually the white tea causing that, then they should’ve just dropped it altogether and made it a tisane spice blend like Strand’s Lemon Spice tea. Honestly, I don’t remember the Lemon Spice tea having that strong pine note, but it’s been a while.
I tried a different white chai in the past which can be found in my Tasting Notes, Art of Tea’s White Winter Chai, and I liked it far more than this one. That tea has sort of a refreshing evergreen note. So it tasted a bit of pine, but it wasn’t paired with lemon, so it didn’t give off that Pine-Sol association, and it was full of leafy white tea, and the spice blend in it was wonderful. But it is only available during the holidays, and only in quarter-pound or larger sizes, and I sort of hate having such a large size on hand (it takes me eons to finish off that size of tea). Next winter I may just have to break down and buy a bag anyway if I can’t find another white chai in the meantime I like as much (or better). But this one definitely isn’t working out for me.
Flavors: Cinnamon, Ginger, Lemon, Medicinal, Peppercorn, Pine, Resin, Spicy, Sweet