Leaf Type: Fruit/Herbal Tisane
Where to Buy: Pluck Tea
A blend of dried grape skins from Niagara’s Organic and Biodynamic Southbrook Vinyards, layered with hibiscus and berries for a delicious fruit tea. Enjoy hot or iced. Caffeine – free
Learn more about August’s Postal Teas shipment here.
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Of the three teas that I received in this month’s box from Postal Teas, this is the tea that I was putting off trying. I was not looking forward to it. I can see the hibiscus! UGH! And because it’s dried grape skins, berries and hibiscus (all dark red) … it just looks like pure hibiscus!
So, needless to say, I didn’t have high hopes for this blend. To steep this, I got out my Kati tumbler and added 1 bamboo scoop of the dark, burgundy red leaves into the basket of the tumbler and poured water heated to 195°F into the tumbler and let it infuse for 4 1/2 minutes. Normally, I’d steep a fruit/berry/herbal tisane like this for 5 – 6 minutes, but because this looked like pure hibiscus to me, I went with slightly less time.
The thing about hibiscus is that the longer you let it steep, the tarter the flavor. Tarter? Tartier? More tart? In addition to a more tartness, the hibiscus turns the liquid into a thick, almost viscous syrup that is quite tart and not very enjoyable to sip. At least, not for me. I guess there are some people that dig that sort of thing.
Anyway, this tastes much better than I anticipated it would. Because of the short steep time, I don’t have a tisane with an unpleasantly thick texture. And because of the short steep time, I’m not tasting an overwhelmingly tart, hibiscus-y drink.
I can taste the berries! I can taste the grape! In fact, the grape is what I taste most. This tastes a whole lot like warm grape juice. I suspect that this tisane would taste really good iced and would go over well with children, and it’s a caffeine free alternative to all those sugary sodas.
The “berries” in this blend, because they meld in such a seamless way with the grape and the hibiscus, it’s difficult to discern what type of berry I’m tasting. It tastes like a berry/grape medley. The hibiscus is still there, of course, but it melds with the flavors of grape and berry in such a way that it doesn’t taste “hibiscus-y”. It tastes like a grape and berry juice that’s both sweet and tart. I am not one who particularly enjoys tart flavors so I added about half a teaspoon of raw sugar to the cup and this toned down the tartness to a tolerable level for my palate.
This is alright. It’s not my favorite tisane, but given how much I thought I’d dislike it, it turned out to be much better than I thought it would.
Overall, I enjoyed this month’s box from Postal Teas. And after perusing Pluck’s selection of teas, I’m finding a whole lot more that I’d love to try. Hey, Postal Teas, if you’re reading … you should feature Pluck again, soon!