Peppermint Creme Brulee from A Quarter To Tea. . .

I am a creme brulee fiend. It is one heck of a tasty dessert and it is one of those flavors that always ends up in my shopping cart. So when this tea (complete with glitter balls and cute candy cane sprinkles) showed up in my monthly subscription box, I was all too excited to give it a try.

I steeped it per the package directions, in 185F water for 3 minutes. The brewed tea filled the entire kitchen with the smell of bruleed sugar deliciousness.  Flavor-wise, there is definitely a sugar sweetness but as much as I thought peppermint would be a great addition, I feel it is a bit too medicinal for this tea. It takes over and though there is a sweet mint aspect, there is also a burn that is far too distracting. With that, any hope of caramel from a bruleed brown sugar aspect or any creamy custard notes are drowned out.

I had high hopes for this one but it was a bit of a miss for my personal preferences.I want more brown sugar. More custard. Less herbal mint.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Oolong
Where to Buy:  A Quarter To Tea
Description

This tea is no longer available but click below for teas that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Grandma’s Apple Strudel from The NecessiTeas . . . .

My grandmother was more of an apple crumble lady herself. My dad’s grandmother, however, could apparently make a mean apple strudel. Now I never met his grandmother but I have gone to a Hungarian restaurant, Old Country Inn, with my Dad who has told me that the strudel there taste’s just like she used to make so that’s my basis of comparison here.

In order to recreate Grandma NecessiTea’s strudel, this tisane is a blend of apples, raisins, cinnamon, chicory, almonds, vanilla, and natural flavoring. I brewed this hot, steeping about 3 teaspoons of tea in 16 ounces of 200F water for 5 minutes.

The first thing this tea brought to mind was the Forever Nuts blend by DAVIDsTEA. Both teas have that warming and sweet nutty flavor to them that takes over. At first when I tried Forever Nuts, I loved the flavor but it is strong and I was quickly turned off of it to the point that even the smell was off-putting. However, whether it be the long time I went without a tea like this or the subtle differences between this and the DAVIDsTEA version, I don’t mind this so much.

The apple is definitely the foundation flavor of this blend, coating your tongue with its sweet and fresh cinnamon-apple note. At first it is a bit of light vanilla that sits atop the apple but that quickly is taken over by the heavier and nutty almond and chicory flavors. There is a baked good vibe here and though the different components all together sound like an apple strudel, I find in actuality this tea doesn’t come together quite how it should so instead it is a jumble of flavors. In fairness, that could be due to my negative experience of Forever Nuts and the similarity to that but as I sip, I just can’t help but think that this is not the Apple Strudel tea for me.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Fruit Tisane
Where to Buy:  The NecessiTeas
Description

This tea does not appear to be available but click below for teas that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Vanilla Bergamot from DAVIDs Tea. . .

“An elegant white tea…” is how DAVIDsTEA describes this Vanilla Bergamot tea but personally I wouldn’t describe the scum ring and oil drops on the surface of my mugs as “elegant”. That’s just me but maybe the flavor will show some of its elegance as opposed to the look.

I made this white tea mixed with apple, white chocolate, rose petals, vanilla, bergamot peel, and flavoring as a strawberry milk latte and a plain tea.

Despite the clearly visible drops of oil in the strawberry milk latte, the tea is creamy and smooth. The mouthfeel is soft, not slick and the sweetness of the strawberry milk really compliments the velvety vanilla and bright bergamot of the cup. At times the citrus of the bergamot gets so crisp it borders on bitter but between the prep method, the white chocolate and the gentle rose, it is kept in check. Though for those that tend to fear the blerg, this might still be too much for your tastes.

The plain hot cup is where I found the scum ring from the white chocolate, I’m assuming. Though the mouthfeel isn’t oily, it’s not really creamy either and since it doesn’t seem that the white chocolate contributes much, I don’t see why it is needed. What is contributing a lot is the bergamot, the brisk bergamot. Vanilla whisps float through but it’s the bergamot that’s hogging the limelight. The rose and apple also get their brief shot in the spotlight, adding a floral note that is a bit drying on top of the bergamot and the signature apple sweetness that so many DAVIDsTEA blends have, respectively.

Well, it seems the elegance comes through when made as a strawberry milk latte but the beauty is lost when the tea is made plain. Lose the white chocolate and perhaps tone down the bergamot and this could be a winner but as it is, I would say latte, preferably with strawberry milk, is the only way to go. It gives this tea just a little boost to take it from “meh” to “mmm”.

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  White Tea
Where to Buy:  DAVIDs Tea
Description

This tea is no longer available but click below for white teas that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Cerise Noire from Dammann Freres. . . .

I love black cherry. It is one of those flavors that just gets me. I blame my mom. When I was a little girl she used to go to an ice cream sale and pick up pints of ice cream to keep on hand. Among the haul was always Black Cherry Ice Cream and me and my mom would always sneak down in the middle of the night (aka 10 pm) and just eat it right out of the container. I got older and the fondness stuck so to this day I can’t resist black cherry or in the case of this tea, “Cerise Noire”.

French teas, such as this one, are best suited to a low and slow steeping so I brewed this for 4 minutes in 190F. The end result is surprisingly thick. Since its scented, the black tea comes through first, mild and smooth. Then comes the cherry flavoring which is subtle. French teas have a typical red fruits flavor and this tea has that, though it does lean more to cherry than anything else.

Since I had enough leaf, I decided to also brew this up as a chocolate milk latte. Chocolate and cherries are quite the pair so I figured how could this be bad. Unfortunately it isn’t great. The chocolate milk combined with with the black tea just makes for a dark flavor that is not really chocolate nor cherry nor tea. The combination is almost a bit bitter and quite heavy. I had high hopes but chocolate milk latte is not the way to go with this one.

As far as black cherry goes, there could be more. At least for my tastes. Though it does have the typical french tea flavor profile so if that is what your looking for and you’re a black cherry fan, this could be a tea for you.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  Dammann Freres
Description

A blend of black teas perfumed with the delicious flavour of black cherry.

 

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Organic Turmeric with Meadowsweet & Ginger from Traditional Medicinals. . . . .

My latest Sipsby box arrived and in it was several packages of this Organic Turmeric with Meadowsweet & Ginger tea by Traditional Medicinals. This isn’t something I would have ever picked for myself but I guess something in my profile suggested I would enjoy it. I guess that in and of itself warrants giving this a try.

Well it is not bad but it is also not a tea I would be all that interested in having again. I don’t often reach for herbals and this is a herbal through and through. When hot, there is a ginger burn, though just slightly and even that touch of burn is drowned out by a sweetness that I want to attribute to the Meadowsweet (but that is because of the name as I haven’t had this herb previously and when I tried researching what it is supposed to taste like, it just said “pleasant”). Before that burn and sweetness sets in though, there is a savory bitterness and that I think is contributed by the turmeric.

Each ingredient brings something different and for those that like these flavors, this could be a nice combination of the bunch. However, for me tea is about desserts and indulgence. This tastes like medicine to me which isn’t the indulgence I am looking for, though I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised when drinking a tea from a company called Traditional Medicinals.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Herbal
Where to Buy:  Traditional Medicinals
Description

Inflammation might get a bad rap, but it really can be a useful signal after exercise. Our formula honors this indication with turmeric, a root praised by healers around the world. Reinforced by the power of meadowsweet— historically used much like turmeric—and ginger’s warming properties, our tea represents an herbal trifecta of ancient wisdom and soothing relief.*

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!