Passion Berry Jolt from Tiesta Tea. . . .

Sometimes I just get a period of several days where I am constantly tired. Don’t know why that is but I just feel like I am dragging myself out of bed when all I want to do is sleep. Usually this occurs following periods of time when a lot has been going on so I think it is my body making up for lost rest. So when these tired periods roll around, I reach for teas that are supposed to wake you up and that is why I am sipping on Passion Berry Jolt by Tiesta Tea.

Passion Berry Jolt is a raspberry passion fruit black tea made with black tea, pineapple bis, natural passion fruit flavors, passion fruit bits, cornflowers, marigold flowers, and raspberry bits. However, I do wonder if this is a complete list of ingredients considering the package also notes that Tiesta Tea’s Energizer blends, which this is, contain black tea AND mate tea. It also provides brewing instructions for both black tea and mate tea so I can’t help but think this may have some mate in it, which would explain the high caffeine content but also make me a little less excited about trying this since mate can have a real earthy flavor that I don’t love.

Since mate is not explicitly stated in the ingredient list, I brewed this per the recommended steeping instructions for a black tea, steeping the leaves in 190F water for 3 minutes. I made both a hot and iced tea this way.

At first sip, the hot tea definitely has a lot of passion fruit flavor. It is coming off like a very tropical black tea. Not much raspberry. There is a sort of concentrated fruity sourness that hits you in the back of the throat and then dissolves into a black tea aftertaste that is brisk and ever so slightly metallic. The passion fruit is nice but I am just not loving the other flavors going on in this hot cup. I am perking up though so I guess the big bold letters reading “Energizer” are telling the truth.

A lot of the time when I ice black teas, they tend to get this thick mouthfeel. This is no exception. I am not sure why that happens and if I am being honest I don’t love it. As for the flavor, this is more of that same passion fruit flavor that I enjoyed in the hot tea, without the sourness at the back of your throat. However, that slightly metallic essence that came in in the aftertaste of the hot tea sort of lingers under the entire sip in the iced tea. Again, I am not getting much raspberry.

This tea, both hot and iced, has one of the better passion fruit flavors I have tried. I think I enjoyed the iced tea more but it was nice both ways if you don’t mind a brisk black tea and that metallic note. Personally, this is not my favorite but I could see it being enjoyed by many. Plus, it is an effective wake up tea for those needing that extra little boost in the morning.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  Tiesta Tea
Description

Packed with passion fruit and raspberry, this black tea blend gives you a jolt of pineapple energy to keep you charged.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Tropical Sunset from Love Some Tea

This is the first time I’m trying a blend from Love Some Tea.  I got a chance to try Tropical Sunset blend thanks to a generous SororiTea Sister.  The first thing I noticed about this tea is its colorful logo and package design. A green stylized tree is set on a bright background of orange and pink sunset rays.  The colors look a bit like a groovy blacklight poster or a flower power mural.

The second thing I notice about this tea is the size and quality of its leaves.  Their description says this includes both black and green teas, but it is hard to tell the difference in the dry leaves, they are all lush, long, curled leaves.  Brewed, the color difference between the green and black leaves is more distinct and you start to notice the layers of flavor in the scent and taste.

This tropical blend is a medium body tea, like an oolong, with a touch of green and mineral flavors.  But the black tea also adds a bit of unexpected starchiness and a tiny hint of woodsy smoke at the end of each sip.

Among all of these intense tea flavors, there are fruity flavors like passionfruit, mango and papaya.  The fruitiness is so lush the dry leaf almost smells like a fresh plum, but the tropical nature of the fruits comes out more in the brewing.

The quality of the tea leaves made it so that I really enjoyed this tea when brewed hot, but something about tropical flavors always makes me think the tea would be even better when served iced.

I was impressed by my first experience with Love Some Tea and I’ll have to try some of their other flavors sometime soon!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black and Green
Where to Buy: Love Some Tea
Description:

Our first green and black blend layered with all the wonderful aromas of Thailand, including dried mango, dried passion fruit, dried papaya, rose flower, blue lotus flower, jasmine flower.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Red, White, and Blue Black Tea from 52Teas

52Teas has some of the more creative tea flavors I’ve ever tasted, so when I saw my sample bag with a little American flag and a fun name like Red, White, and Blue Black Tea, I knew it had to come from 52Teas.

This blend features raspberries (red), coconut (white), and blueberries (blue), all mixed in with a black tea base. Even before brewing, the tea leaves were a colorful joy to look at. Brewed hot, the coconut and black tea were the most forward at first, very bold and buttery.

I used the 52Teas recommendation and let the tea cool for about 10 minutes before taking another sip.  When I returned to my cup there was much more flavor from the berries.  I tasted tart red raspberry and sweet dark blueberry, all swirled together with the lingering creaminess from the coconut.

Maybe I’m just thinking of patriotic summer days, but this blend would make an excellent cold brew.  It has rich fruit flavors for natural sweetness, solid black tea backing for body and robustness, and a touch of tropical coconut to lighten the mood.

If you’re not an American tea drinker, don’t let the flag theme put you off this blend, it is a great berry coconut black tea that will be sure to add some spring to your step as a hot morning brew or an iced afternoon treat.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: 52Teas

This tea is no longer available but check back to see if the tea gets a reblend and what blends are available.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Spotlight on Fraser Tea Bags

Sustainable business models are so hot right now. Seriously, Zoolander aside, I’m all about capitalists that care about future generations. Fraser Tea sells organic tea blends in corn-based, sustainably produced pyramids. I think it’s a great option to consider bringing in to your cubicle or on vacations. I received several of their pyramids in my tea mail this month, so their spotlight is a little from Column A and a little from Column B…

Spicy Chocolate Chai – flavored puerh

First things first, a girls gotta have her chocolate. There were oils on top of brew, which always equate to having been carefully handled and thus retain more of the goodness we expect from full leaf teas. A sneaky Chai taste followed by a  mellow chocolate aftertaste. The tiniest bit of sweetener rounded out these flavors. I want to point out for later on, those of you hardcore readers, that this tea has 60 mg caffeine.

Chamomile Dream – herbal

To me, Sleepy-time teas are the most swoon-worthy. There’s always something about them that is so restorative and comforting.  This pyramid has sweet smelling dry leaves. As soon as that scent connects in my brain, there’s that instant calming response. I know i’m not the only one!

The blend of wet leaves smell just as sweet, and I notice an enticing hint of a berry red in them now. This tastes like soft, pillowy, dreamy meadows… full of sheep, so many sheep, mmm and it feels like time to say goodnight.

Turmeric Ginger Green – flavored green

Ok, preface, turmeric and I got off on the wrong foot when it stained my gravity strainer for no good reason. I have been suspicious of its health claims ever since… but that’s a personal bias which does not discount dozens of peer-reviewed scientific studies…  I also need to state that my toddler helped me brew this and ripped the bag 😬 kay, so still waiting for the great feelings. Moving on, I found I prefer this ingredient in bag form because it eliminates my first problem with staining. So my palate has started to open up to tea for health reasons, as opposed to familiar tastes. There is an acquired taste to this tea, but it is not in your face. It certainly would be a perfect finish to a savory lunch.

Yerba Mint – alternative tea

Until now I never realized how powerful other plants could be in the caffeine department! I guess I should have known that from coffee beans, but I never put it all together until I saw there was 70+ mg caffeine in this non-camellia sinensis plant!!! Yikes! That probably explains a few restless nights after “just some herbal” tea… The juxtaposition between earthy and gentle is juuuuuuust right here. I can imagine putting this over ice would be a delightful way to ignore a humid summer.

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Variety
Where to Buy: Fraser Tea

https://frasertea.com/products/organic-spicy-chocolate-chai

Spicy Chocolate Chai Organic Pu-erh Tea is a fusion of cocoa nibs, spicy chili peppers, and delicate, sweet oranges combined to craft a flavor sensation with maximum health benefits. Striking a delicate balance between heat and sweetness, spicy chocolate chai is a smooth and flavorful tea that supports weight management and wellness.  Enjoy any time. Try it as-is or add milk and sugar.

https://frasertea.com/products/chamomile-dream-organic-herbal-tea.

Chamomile Dream Organic Herbal Tea soothes the mind and body.  Supporting health and digestion, this relaxing organic tea blends gentle, floral notes of chamomile, cleansing and bright lemongrass, tart hibiscus and refreshing peppermint. Try it anytime throughout the day, with a book before bedtime, or following a restorative meditation practice. Chamomile Dream offers gentle, soothing relaxation for mind, body and spirit.


https://frasertea.com/products/organic-turmeric-ginger

Turmeric Ginger Organic Green Tea delivers a multitude of health benefits in a delicious and flavorful way.  Green tea is blended with cinnamon, ginger, pink peppercorn, lemongrass, and turmeric offering a sweet and unexpected fresh taste. Known as a “superfood”, turmeric’s list of health benefits include boosting your body’s immunity, anti-inflammatory properties, improved brain function and heart health.

https://frasertea.com/products/organic-yerba-mate-mint

This Yerba Mate Mint Organic Herbal Tea is an energizing blend. At Fraser Tea we formulated this vibrant tea to maximize focus or help make the most of your daily workout. We combine the South American yerba mate plant with invigorating peppermint, a sophisticated green tea and an array of floral’s to amplify the natural benefits. Yerba mate is considered the healthy wonder drink grown in South America thanks to its energizing effects. Traditionally yerba mate is consumed with a gourd and a straw, however you can use your favorite teacup. Our Yerba Mate Mint tea is delicious iced or warm.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Nilgiri / Tea Queens . . . .

There are three main tea growing areas; Assam, Darjeeling, and the lesser known Nilgiri. These teas come from the Southern portion of India. This is the first time I’ve tried a plain black from the region and I’m amazed at how different all three are. While Assam tends to be known for their stronger bodied teas with a punch in the face, and Darjeeling known for their muscatel and delicate flavors, Nilgiri on the other hand is somewhat a mix of both. Woodsy flavors mix with very subtle fruity notes to form a light bodied brew. It’s smooth without any astringency. This is the type of tea that is best consumed on it’s own. Food in general is not a good pairing because the flavors are so light and delicate.

Just as a side note I wanted to mentioned how impressed I am with the company that produces this tea. Burnside estates located in Kotagiri Taluk in the “Blue Mountains” of the Nilgiris in South India. They are a sustainable company focused not only on good tea but also on making sure their employees are properly cared for and the eco-friendliness of this company is superb. If you have time please go to their website and give them a look!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Tea Queens 
Description:

A smooth, gentle and mellow black tea from the Burnside Estate in Southern India. This classic and elegant tea is rich with a slightly woody and fruity flavor.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!