Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Tea tasting: Adagio's Eternal Spring White Tea

It's April and I got 4' of snow on Monday.  What the bloody hell?

In a bid to bring about the end of the Fimbul Winter, I brewed up a pot of Adagio's Eternal Spring white tea.  Maybe it's because I'm desperate for anything suggesting spring, this blend of fruits, rose hips  and rose petals works quite well for me.

The aroma is highly floral, distinctly rose, but manages to avoid the "pot potpourri" quality that afflicts so many rose-based teas.  The rose largely drops out of the flavor, leaving behind a fruit blend with notes of pineapple and mango.  There's apparently apple in there too but I don't taste it.

It's not a strong enough fruit tea to make into iced tea.  It's a bit light and airy behind the fruitiness, almost, dare I say it, spring-like. 

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Tea tasting: Adagio's Peach Bellini

What a good idea!  What a lovely aroma!   What a lousy tea!

Adagio's Peach Bellini tisane has a lush, fruity peach aroma that promises a delightful taste to come.  It lies.   Even using 2 heaping tea spoons of the tisane (twice the recommended amount) and twice the normal steep time, all it yielded was bland, slightly peachy hot water.  It's not even bad tea because it doesn't have enough character to be properly bad.

Tea tasting: Tea Forte's Black Currant

Black currant is one of those flavors that goes quite nicely in a good black tea.  I've not yet had a bad black currant flavored tea.  Tea forte's black currant black tea continues that trend nicely, adding some sweet blackberry to go along with the currant flavors.

The base black tea is a really good Yunnan tea, with flavor notes of its own, which makes the resulting brew all the better.  The fruity qualities are lushly aromatic but less strong in the taste.  It's not overly fruited, like the horrid cough medicine quality black cherry tea from Tea Forte I tried a few months ago, for which I thank all the household gods of tea.

It's not remarkable, life-changing, revelatory tea.  It's a basic fruited black tea that has a nice balance of fruit and tea -- an above the ordinary caffeine delivery system.

Tea tasting: Bohea Tea

The Spice and Tea Exchange in Mystic, CT sells something they call "Bohea Tea," which they describe as a smokey orange tea that replicates as closely as possible Colonial-era tea of the type dumped into Boston Harbor.  It's a blend of Assam black tea, lapsang souchong, cinnamon chips, orange peel, cloves and unspecific "cinnamon" and "orange" flavoring.

Obviously, given my love for both history and tea I *had* to try this.

When I say it is very good for what it is, I'm trying not to damn this tea with faint praise.  Imagine if Constant Comment, that bane of my existence, were actually good tea.   Bohea Tea is far more smokey than orange-y.  The cinnamon and the smokiness work very nicely together.  The orange sneaks up to tap you on the shoulder in the aftertaste. 

Unfortunately, this tea is not to my personal taste.   I want more tea flavor elements than smoke.  I want a stronger orange element.   There are people who read this blog who are going to *adore* this tea.  I'm just not one of them. 

I'm going to fiddle a bit with adding honey and Sugar in the Raw to see what sweetener does to the flavor blend.   If any of my readers are fans of milk in tea, I'm willing to donate a bit of my sample to flavor-test that (I can't stand milk in tea).  If I have any revelations of note, I'll update this entry.

While I can enjoy Bohea Tea as an intellectual exercise, I won't be ordering more after I finish my sample package.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Guest review: Adagio's Bella Luna Blue

When there is a Blue Moon in the night sky, Adagio Teas offers, for 24 hours, a product called “Bella Luna Blue”.   Your humble blogger failed to notice the moon and order a sample.  However, +Camille des Jardins did, and helpfully provided this guest review:

You need a white or clear teacup to fully appreciate this drink.  Bella Luna Blue. Made with Butterfly Pea Flower, Lemongrass, and flavored with natural blueberries, the tisane has a strong blueberry scent when the bag is opened. When made, the water instantly colors a beautiful sapphire color which deepens as the steeping progresses. Blueberry with lemon wafts through the air.

I found that it did not have as strong a flavor as I like when drunk hot, and the taste improved considerably as it cooled. This would be a delightful iced tea. Adding a little lemon juice enhances the flavor nicely, and turns it a glorious fuchsia color! A teaspoon of honey deepens the color to either a dark indigo or deep purple, depending on whether lemon preceded it. Hot, I definitely prefer it with both lemon and honey, and I am sure it would taste nice cooled with these additions as well.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Elmwood Inn's Wild Strawberry Green Tea

Now that I have finished off some of my tea packages, I can start drinking and writing about new teas.   I picked up Elmwood Inn's Wild Strawberry Green Tea when I was in Meridies for KWHSS this past summer.   Elmwood Inn is a new tea vendor for me -- I spent hours today crawling through their website, which is chock full of great stuff.

Their Wild Strawberry uses green tea from Japan with strawberry and papaya flavors.  The particular green tea used here is one of the floral varieties, giving the brew a very flowery aroma both in the tin and after brewing.  I don't notice the papaya flavor in the brew.   The strawberry is nicely strong, however, fairly competing with the floral qualities of the tea.  It's a very soothing brew, not overly sweet, and a great antidote to gray February days.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Tea tasting: Tea Forte's Raspberry Ganache

I got a package of Tea Forte single steep packets for Christmas from +Joseph O'Malley and +Michelle O'Malley .  Today being horridly cold and awful, I decided to crack them open and try the Raspberry Ganache.

It's billed as raspberry and chocolate and it combines both flavors quite nicely.  It's neither overly fruity nor overly sweet.  The chocolate notes are dark chocolate, which blends wonderfully with the dark flavors of the tea.  All in all, it manages to taste like a good chocolate raspberry liqueur  (and not like those awful chocolate cherry cordials that find their way into holiday chocolate boxes) was added to a rich, black tea.   I highly approve.   It would be the perfect after dinner/dessert tea if not for the fact that it contains caffeine.