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!

Let’s Go Bananas Again! Recent Tastings of Banana Teas

Check out my first Let’s Go Bananas tea posting.

It’s no secret I love the flavor of bananas. I like the taste in pastries, candy, breakfast, the fruit itself, and of course, the taste of bananas in tea! Here is another round of tasty banana inspired teas I’ve tried lately

Banana Split from The Necessiteas

Leaf type: red rooibos

This red rooibos blend has all three essential components of a banana split, with pieces of strawberries, bananas, and carob bean (“chocolate”).  The strong red rooibos compliments the sweet and tart fruit pieces in the blend. The chocolate is an undertone, taking a backseat to the driving banana and strawberry flavor combination. The blend benefits from sweetener and milk to make it feel more like a dessert and bring out more of the bananas.

 

Perles de Antilles Rooibos Blend from Camellia Sinensis distributed by Amoda Tea

Leaf type: green rooibos

This tropical green rooibos blend has pieces of dried banana, pineapple, and coconut. All three fruits are prominent, and no one ingredient takes the lead. Banana and coconut are the sweet components, bringing creaminess and body to the blend. The pineapple adds a much-needed pop of tartness to balance the blend. This tea is the most refreshing as an iced tea, and drinking it iced helps support its summertime tropical vibe.

 

Banana Marshmallow Treat Genmaicha from 52Teas

Leaf type: green

52Teas has a whole host of delicious flavored genmaicha teas. Being the sucker for banana that I am, this was one of my favorites. The sweet cream of the marshmallow pairs well with the banana, almost like a banana cream pie. The toasty flavors of the puffed rice help this blend from being too sweet, and if keeping with the pie analogy, the rice makes up the crust-like component of the blend. All the warm, roasted flavors of puffed rice and gentle green taste of genmaicha with creamy marshmallow fluff and banana.

 

I know there are still banana teas out there that I haven’t tried, so I’ll need to fill up my mug and go bananas for banana tea all over again!

Strawberry Shortcake from The NecessiTeas . . . .

There’s something about strawberry shortcake that makes me think of summer, or at least makes me think of flowery tea parties.  Maybe it’s just the fact that strawberries are at their height in the summer, or the fact that strawberry shortcake is often served with everyone getting their own little cake on a doily or saucer.  Either way, drinking Strawberry Shortcake tea from the Necessiteas felt like the right thing to do on a beautiful summer day.

This tea smells decadent even in the dry leaf, with lots of strawberry and vanilla fragrance.  The scent is supremely sweet, almost like strawberry Starburst candies.  The blend brews up gold in color, and continues to be berry-sweet and incredibly fragrant.

In taste, the most forward tastes are strawberries and cream, with a bit of the earthy white tea to balance all the dessert-flavors.  There are yellow cake notes at the back of each sip, reminding me of birthday cake ice cream.  These cake flavors combine with the white tea, bringing an almost buttery, savory feel to the tea that gets creamier as the brew cools.

Three things go into strawberry shortcake: berries, cake, and cream, and this blend has all three essential elements in tea form.  This is a must-try blend for any dessert-tea fans, or for any fun summery, strawberry occasions in your schedule.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: White
Where to Buy: The NecessiTeas
Description: Angel food cake perfectly combines with a light layer of sweet cream and juicy strawberries to create this guilt-free dessert. Enjoy hot or poured over ice.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Pineapple Mimosa from The NecessiTeas. . .

As I get older (hello, 30, comin’ round the mountain), I’ve noticed my body just can’t handle alcohol the way it used to. I’ve never been a huge drinker, but I enjoy a hearty glass of red wine with a big ol’ steak, or a fresh and fruity mimosa paired perfectly with a late-morning brunch. But in the interest of hangover-after-one-glass-of-wine-is-no-longer-worth-it, I’ve been abstaining mostly from alcohol as of late. I occasionally miss the special-ness of a fancy cocktail at a fancy event, but you guys. FOMO-no-more, I have found the perfect replacement.

Some of my very favorite tea companies (The Necessiteas being one) have blended up some spectacular brews that, on ice, make for a killer mocktail. This blend, Pineapple Mimosa, hits that brunch-tastic spot just perfectly. An herbal blend chock-full of fruit and beautiful marigold and cornflower petals, this one brews up to a beautiful golden liquor that looks like a dead-ringer for your favorite cocktail, served in a fancy glass. There’s a definite sweetness there, but a nice tempering of the fruit as well (perhaps from the addition of ginger?) that gives it a little more depth of flavor, mimicking something like a dry-but-fruity white wine. Even tastier is this one mixed with a plain sparkling water for just a hint of fizz.

If you’re like me and choose to stay away from alcohol, but still love the special-ness of a fancy beverage in the summer, look no further! The Necessiteas has the perfect solution.


Here’s the scoop!

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

I am a total brunch girl or at least a brunch cocktail girl! I love testing champagne cocktails with different tropical flavors the same way I do with tea. I decided to stick with pineapple for this blend because of it’s delicate taste. But it was the ginger that really blew up the whole combination and turned this fruit infusion into something spectacular! Ginger was the missing puzzle piece to complete this yummy champagne “mocktail”. It’s all there, the fizz, the slight ginger spice and the sweet pineapple flavor balancing everything out.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Hot Chocolate from The NecessiTeas. . .

Every so often I like to make tea packages for my friends. I go through a bunch of my teas and try to share samples of teas they might not otherwise come across themselves. Oftentimes that means I share my NecessiTea teas because NecessiTeas does not offer sample sizes so I have a lot to share and it allows my friends the opportunity to try the teas before they commit to a larger amount.

While packaging this Hot Chocolate tea to share, my mouth began to water at the smell of the dry leaf. I figured there was no better time to give it a try than when I already had the tin out and the teaspoon in hand. So, I got the kettle started and brewed this up both as a plain teas and as a concentrated version topped up with some vanilla almond milk to make a latte.

I was all prepared to get to drinking and blogging…and then food delivery arrived 20 minutes early. So by the time I got to trying the tea, I was completely stuffed from my meal, and the teas had cooled more than I intended. I only mention this because that may or may not have played a role in how I tasted the tea and I wanted to be completely transparent.

The plain tea was very murky, which was to be expected from all the various ingredients in the dry leaf including black tea, apples, cocoa beans, chocolate, barley, yogurt, freeze dried marshmallows, natural and organic flavors. The mouthfeel was surprisingly smooth for such a murky blend but the flavor was lighter than I hoped it would be. The chocolate flavor was present though it was more like cacao than a smooth milk/dark chocolate meaning it was an earthier flavor. The barley blended with that earthiness and gave it a more grainy flavor. Like chocolate cereal…in water. The smell really had me excited but this is weaker and less silky than I would have expected or hoped for from a Hot Chocolate tea.

The vanilla almond milk latte just latched on to that grain flavor from the barley and combined it with the nuttiness of the milk to give this an even earthier vibe than the plain tea. It almost tastes like unsweetened oatmeal. The chocolate is completely drowned out and honestly, it is a little bit chalky. I blame the almond milk more than the tea though because I haven’t had much success using it in lattes. Basically I am pretending like this didn’t happen because it just was not good.

All in all, the smell of this tea is amazing but a little misleading. It seems like it should be rich and creamy but I found this had a much lighter/weak flavor than one would expect. It has so many amazing ingredients and yet I didn’t get much of them. I wanted more from the marshmallow. More from the yogurt. Those flavors would have helped as they would have contributed some much needed sweetness and creaminess into this blend.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  The NecessiTeas
Description

What’s not to love about hot chocolate? It’s hot, sweet and chocolate-y goodness never does me wrong! The best part is licking the creamy marshmallows that have turned into a thick frothy cream! And that’s where my idea for this tea blend came about.. I combined flavorful black tea with cocoa beans, decadent chocolate, a touch of vanilla and topped it with mini marshmallows.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!